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Thread: Options, risks and side effects for killing demodex mites?

  1. #1
    Senior Member findingaway's Avatar
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    Default Options, risks and side effects for killing demodex mites?

    Hi,

    I am starting to think treating demodex mites might be a very good idea. I was going to go down the sea buckthorn route, but there is just such a lack of evidence. It seemed like the safest option.

    I would like to try tea tree oil mixed, but I know having the concentration (with a carrier oil) too low can actually have a negative effect and too high can sensitise the skin.

    Permethrin and Ivermectin are other options, but a little to chemical and harsh for my liking. However, they could be better then the 'natural' option of tea tree oil, so not writing them off.

    This page talks about how to kills the demodex mites: http://rosacea-support.org/just-how-...dex-mites.html - but it doesn't go into any detail re 100% carraway oil and dill weed oil, only the other options.

    Now demodex mites, are they beneficial to the skin in anyway, or just a bug that cohabits the skin? From what I read, they don't serve any purpose to us. Will eradicating the mites cause other issues?

    Anyway, thoughts on this would be greatly appreciated.

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    have you been tested for demodex, findingaway? i'd think that would be the place to start. and you've read the other demodex threads on this forum, right?

    i've never heard of demodex doing anything desirable for us; i believe that for most people who have them they're innocuous, but not beneficial.

    overly strong dilutions of ti tree oil (or any essential oil) are indeed really risky, but i've never heard of low dilutions having "a negative effect" - could explain what you mean, and where you read that? (until further notice i reckon you mean something more than just "ineffective against mites".)

    i can't get that page you provided the link to to open, so i don't know if it's mentioned there, but another approach you might want to add to your list is clotrimazole cream, which is an antifungal, but my dermatologist says it also sometimes helps against demodex. my skin seems to like it.

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    As dora suggested, you can ask a derm to do a skin scraping to see if demodex is your issue. The problem is, in a lot of countries (e.g. U.S. and the UK), derms don't seem to take the mite seriously. In countries like China and Russia, it is a different story. If you can't get a derm to check properly, you can use a microscope at 400 times (if I remember), and do several scrapings. If neither of these things are available, another way to go about it is to use Eurax or Permethrin every night for 2 weeks and see what happens. Although, that may also not be entirely convincing, because the red skin won't disappear from doing this (or it may). (That will take a long time to get rid of, longer than the infections. First your immune system has to stop reacting to the mites/mite bacteria, so it could even take a year from what I understand.)

    Even if you do just have "classic" rosacea, there is nothing controversial about just killing mites, as they aren't really "good" for anyones skin in my opinion, and certainly not good for rosacea. If you do decide to go that route, I would give it a long go (at least 6 months).

    As far as methods, it is up to you and what you can tolerate. There is the ZZ cream from demodex solutions, which is a sulfur treatment (sulfur is an insecticide) that I have been using myself. Then there is Permethrin, Eurax, Ivermectin, Benzyl Benzoate, TTO, and other things that have been mentioned in this forum. I have taken Ivermectin orally, with no side effects, and I can't say what it did. Russians have been using sulfur and Benzyl Benzoate with a lot of success in treating demodex. TTO, which I have, might actually be worse than Permethrin in some ways. I wouldn't use even 50% TTO on your face, and I wouldn't put that stuff anywhere near your eyes.

    Demodex can indeed do a lot of damage to your skin if they are not controlled, so it is more about weighing the risks here. Just treating for a few weeks will likely not show any kind of substantial result. I am going to go the topical Ivermectin and Benzyl Benzoate route soon.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Brady Barrows's Avatar
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    Default No known risks and side effects of killing demodex mites

    As far as I know there are no known risks or side effects for killing demodex mites. Interesting thread. It has already deviated from the title.

    My understanding is that there is no known purpose for the demodex mites on humans and they prove innocuous to most people who give little if any thought to them since most people aren't even aware they have them. They are also in your carpet, sheets, blankets and pillow cases and everywhere there is human skin droppings. Just because there is no known purpose for these little critters doesn't mean they serve no useful purpose. Maybe they do?

    For instance, E. coli can help people and animals to digest food and help in providing vitamins but sometimes runs amuck causing some serious food poisoning. Could demodex mites have a useful yet unknown purpose and at the same time sometimes cause problems?

    If more were known about these little buggers we would probably know the risks and side effects of killing them. But since there hasn't been any published articles showing the benefits and purpose of demodex mites on human skin it would be quite astonishing to show any risk or side effect from the result of killing them.

    What is probably more important to know is what are the side effects and risks of using a particular anti-mite treatment? You can read on a prescription what the risks and side effects of ivermectin (Stromectol) since it is published on the insert that comes with the medicine or easily read online.

    What is important to know is how many clinical papers are published about demodectic rosacea and browse through them getting a knowledge of this subject. There is a lot of information on demodectic rosacea.

    A recent post by Maleman reports that a mixture of 50% Sweet almond oil and 50% of the TTO morning and night works.
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    Senior Member Brady Barrows's Avatar
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    Default Options for killing demodex mites

    I posted this earlier here on Feb 18 07:25 AM:

    There are a number of treatments proposed:

    Eurax (crotamiton, Ranbaxy)
    Topical application of 1/3 diluted camphor oil with glycerol and 500 mg metronidazole orally were given for fifteen days
    Freshly prepared camphor oil with or without glycerol dilutions gave complete cure with concentrations of 100%, 75%. and 50%
    topical Elimite (permethrin, Allergan)
    Ivermectin (Stromectol) is also prescribed orally and topically
    Oil of Oregano has been reported as treatment
    Tea Tree Oil is another treatment

    All the above treatments are mentioned in this post.

    There are also others mentioned previously in this thread.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brady Barrows View Post
    A recent post [in this forum] reports that a mixture of 50% Sweet almond oil and 50% of the TTO morning and night works.
    well, a blowtorch might get rid of the mites too, but that doesn't mean it's a good idea.
    50% dilutions of ti tree oil (or any essential oil) is way way too strong to use safely on the skin.

  7. #7
    Senior Member findingaway's Avatar
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    Wow. Loads of posts.

    Dora

    Have you been tested for demodex, findingaway?
    I haven't no and after my last experience with the derm (>here<), I don't think I will be rushing back. Isn't there a way to home test?

    When I posted my >picture< up on here, someone mentioned my skin looked like theirs and that they had a demodex infestation.


    Gumbo

    As dora suggested, you can ask a derm to do a skin scraping to see if demodex is your issue. The problem is, in a lot of countries (e.g. U.S. and the UK), derms don't seem to take the mite seriously. In countries like China and Russia, it is a different story. If you can't get a derm to check properly, you can use a microscope at 400 times (if I remember), and do several scrapings. If neither of these things are available, another way to go about it is to use Eurax or Permethrin every night for 2 weeks and see what happens. Although, that may also not be entirely convincing, because the red skin won't disappear from doing this (or it may). (That will take a long time to get rid of, longer than the infections. First your immune system has to stop reacting to the mites/mite bacteria, so it could even take a year from what I understand.)
    Very true. Well this poster: http://www.rosaceagroup.org/The_Rosa...0-Rosacea-Gone. said their rosacea had gone in just 4 days of using the tea tree solution. I would be worried about sensitising myself to TTO.

    I have read other reports of TTO miraculously helping. I did try a mix a very long time ago at the start of all this, but never stuck with it.


    Dora

    and you've read the other demodex threads on this forum, right?
    I have found these threads which I have looked through:


    I bookmark all interesting threads incase I want to go back to one to find info out.

    I started this thread because I could not find a thread that detailed down all the different treatment options, their risks and side effects. Please correct me if I am wrong, I would be very interested to read it.

    They are interesting threads and discuss demodex mites, but I couldn't find any definitive answer on whether they are somehow helpful to us - maybe by killing other parasitic (correct term?) cohabiting our skin? Essentially upsetting the balance of cohabiters on our skin. I have found no evidence to suggest this.

    I take it all these treatments kill both Demodex folliculorum and Demodex brevis?


    Brady

    I posted this earlier here on Feb 18 07:25 AM:

    There are a number of treatments proposed:

    Eurax (crotamiton, Ranbaxy)
    Topical application of 1/3 diluted camphor oil with glycerol and 500 mg metronidazole orally were given for fifteen days
    Freshly prepared camphor oil with or without glycerol dilutions gave complete cure with concentrations of 100%, 75%. and 50%
    topical Elimite (permethrin, Allergan)
    Ivermectin (Stromectol) is also prescribed orally and topically
    Oil of Oregano has been reported as treatment
    Tea Tree Oil is another treatment

    All the above treatments are mentioned in this post.

    There are also others mentioned previously in this thread.
    Thanks Brady, interesting. As I said above, I am interesting in the risks and side effects of these treatments too, both short and long term. Any info you have would be very beneficial.

    I suppose what I would like to know is what side effects the different treatment options have?


    This is what I have found so far and more questions than answers! This information was lifted from websites after I googled 'side effects' and the substance, so please don't take it verbatim:

    Tea Tree Oil

    In vitro, a 50% solution killed demodex mites in 15 minutes (>here<). I cannot find the link now, but I read too low a dilution was detrimental in some way, less then 5% I think. It was more then just ineffective. Annoying.

    Will lower concentrations still kill the mites?

    Side effects:

    • Dry skin
    • Burning
    • Allergic Reaction
    • Sensitisation


    Any other side effects?


    Permethrin

    Information >here< says can be effective against papulopustular rosacea.

    Side effects:

    • Itching
    • Mild burning
    • Stinging
    • Redness
    • Swelling


    What are the consequences of long term use of this product?


    Ivermectin

    Lots of info >here<

    Side effects:

    ORAL
    • Headache
    • Dizziness
    • Muscle pain
    • Nausea
    • Diarrhea


    ORAL RARE
    • Neck/back pain
    • Swelling face/arms/hands/feet
    • Chest pain
    • Fast heartbeat
    • Confusion
    • Seizures
    • Loss of consciousness
    • Allergic reaction


    ************

    Couldn't find anything on the topical application of Ivermectin, only this:

    In an alternative embodiment, ivermectin is formulated into a cosmetically-acceptible topical lotion, cream, or gel and applied to skin affected by rosacea. Because of the well-known barrier effect the skin presents to the penetration of topical medications, such a route of treatment with ivermectin would be anticipated to require once- or twice-daily applications for as long as four weeks to achieve sufficient follicle penetration and effective miticidal activity. A topical formulation that could achieve this effect would contain about 1-5% ivermectin and could be enhanced in penetration if the active agent were encapsulated inside microliposomes. Such a topical treatment would likely need to be repeated more frequently than the preferred oral embodiment, but a disease-free interval should be achieved by each course of therapy.

    SOURCE

    Carraway Oil

    Shown to kill demodex mites in 4 minutes (>here<)

    More info >here<

    Side effects:

    • Skin rashes
    • Itching



    Dill weed Oil

    Shown to kill demodex mites in 14 minutes (>here<)

    More info >here<

    Side effects:

    Little is known...
    • Skin irritation
    • Extra sensitive to the sun


    I did find this though (whether it is the same thing I don't know)

    Potential Acute Health Effects:
    Very hazardous in case of skin contact (irritant), of eye contact (irritant). Hazardous in case of ingestion, of inhalation. Slightly hazardous in case of skin contact (permeator). Inflammation of the eye is characterized by redness, watering, and itching. Skin inflammation is characterized by itching, scaling, reddening, or, occasionally, blistering.

    SOURCE

    Brady, maybe you could shed some light on the others you mentioned.

    Some further questions to ponder...

    I know you you can increase certain acids in the skin by applying acids and it would be interesting to know what the 'ideal' breeding ground is for demodex mites. Knowing this might help to create an environment, with oils, where the demodex lesson in number because their environment is not best suited to their needs.

    I have no idea if there is any mileage in this idea, but just a thought. It could be why some people report they have success with the likes of grapeseed oil (high in linoleic acid) and sea buckthorn oil (high in palmitoleic acid). Just a thought.

    And one last question. What do demodex mights feed on?

    I think I need to brush up on my knowledge of demodex mites.

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    Right, just a bit more research to add which may be of interest and makes (in my mind) a stronger correlation between rosacea and demodex mites.

    Early research indicated that they are most numerous around the nose and eyes, but some recent studies have found the highest numbers on the cheeks and forehead.

    SOURCE
    ...Rosacea areas.

    The older you are, the more likely you are to have a few mites living in your follicles, with some sources stating that virtually all senior citizens have them.

    ...In children, Demodex are rare and almost exceptional in neonates.

    SOURCE
    ...Hmm, so they probably don't help us as not all people have them as cohabiting their skin.

    Plus, isn't rosacea more prevalent from 30 onwards...

    Several therapeutic modalities have been reported to be effective in eradication of Demodex. The use of topical and systemic acaricidal agents, such as permethrin, lindane, crotamiton, malathion and benzyl benzoate, as well as oral ivermectin may lead to rapid and complete recovery (3). Alternatives are oral erythromycin, and topical or systemic metronidazole (3, 5, 6, 8).

    SOURCE
    ...A few more to add to the list.

    The use of yellow mercurial ointment, sulphur ointment, camphorated oil, crotamiton, choline esterase inhibitors, sulfacetamide, steroids, antibiotics, as well as antimycotic drugs offers some improvement. A good response has been observed after oral application of ivermectin along with topical application of cream permethrin. However, the best results were obtained after 2% metronidazole gel or ointment treatment.

    SOURCE
    ...Hmm, maybe explains why metrogel works for so many...

    "This indicates that the Bacillus bacteria found in the Demodex mite produce an antigen that could be responsible for the tissue inflammation associated with papulopustular rosacea," Dr. Kavanagh said.*

    SOURCE
    ...So maybe it's the bacteria the demodex are associated with that causes the problem? Maybe eradicating the bacteria is the key.

    Bacillus bacteria are good bacteria. According to health scientists, they are beneficial to your health. Most of them provide anti-bacterial properties and help clean your body of toxins, which can wreak havoc to your health.

    SOURCE
    ...Good for the body. Maybe not so good on the skin?


    I'm all researched out. Will do some more later...

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    Regarding your experience with your derm, I can say I have had probably 7 completely useless appointments. The last time I went I simply said do a skin scraping, as that is all I'm interested in (since no dermatologist diagnosed me as having anything, not SD, not rosacea). I have slight pink, the occasional red bump (which I don't have anymore after treating for demodex), and dry, itchy, rough skin. If you go to another derm, make sure you just ask for a skin scraping and biopsy, and ask to check for fungus and demodex. I honestly don't think dermatologists have the ability to say what rosacea or SD is, unless it is a bad case. All they check for is a red face and blood vessels. The symptoms of type 1 rosacea (flushing and blushing) are foreign to me. I have never really had that.

    Antibiotics are good, as they kill mite bacteria, but unless you get rid of the mite population, that bacteria will just come back when they die in your skin. Metronidazole will not get rid of demodex.

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    Senior Member Brady Barrows's Avatar
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    Default Risks and Side Effects of various anti-mite treatments

    Quote Originally Posted by findingaway View Post
    Wow. Loads of posts......
    Thanks Brady, interesting. As I said above, I am interesting in the risks and side effects of these treatments too, both short and long term. Any info you have would be very beneficial.

    I suppose what I would like to know is what side effects the different treatment options have?.......

    Brady, maybe you could shed some light on the others you mentioned.......
    Ok. Well that is a task to take on. You might want to read this long thread about Ivermectin to start with. This will take some time to do this project, but this is an excellent thread you have started and I hope everyone helps.
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