What is Demodex? Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment

Demodex: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment

Demodex is the name given to small mites that live in hair follicles. In humans, demodex is found in humans on the skin of the face, especially the forehead, cheeks, edges of the nose, eyelashes and outer ear canals. Sometimes it causes a condition called demodicosis (demodicosis). There are two mites that are mainly involved in demodex invasions in humans: Demodex folliculorum and Demodex brevis. Demodex folliculorum mites live in or around the hair follicles, tend to be more common around the eyes, affecting the eyelids and lashes. In both immature and adulthood, dead skin cells are fed with fats and hormones that form there. Demodex brevis is found in sebaceous glands attached to small hair follicles and is fed on gland cells. The length of Demodex brevis mites is 0.15-0.2 mm.

In this article, we will look at the situations that cause Demodex folliculorum mites to become a problem and their existence, diagnosis and treatment methods including home remedies will be discussed.

Demodex Folliculorum

Demodex folliculorum mites are 0.3-0.4 mm long. These mites are often harmless and cannot be seen with the naked eye, only their structure can be seen under a microscope. Demodex folliculorum mites can cause unwanted symptoms and skin problems when they are too many. Eight feet of this mite move at a speed of 8-16 mm / s, which is done mainly overnight because bright light causes the mites to retract into the follicle.

Though the idea of ​​mites on the skin is unpleasant, it is actually common for small amounts. Human demodex mites are a normal finding in older children and adults, and are rarely seen in children under the age of five. D. folliculorum mites are more common in males than females, people aged 20-30 are more likely to be affected. It is also diagnosed in immunodeficiency states such as human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection. Skin problems caused by mites of Demodex species are called demodicosis (demodicosis). The skin problem caused by Demodex folliculorum mites is also known as “pityriasis folliculorum” or “spinulate demodicosis”. It is a type of keratosis that manifests itself with a slight redness of the skin and sandpaper-like texture due to follicular flaking. It can also cause irritation and a burning sensation.

What are the Symptoms of Demodex Folliculorum?

D. folliculorum naturally occurs on human skin. These mites spread to others through contact. They can survive up to 15 days. Unlike other skin mites, D. folliculorum increases the amount of skin cells in the hair follicles. Many people with mites on their skin do not know their existence. A large number of D. folliculorum mites can cause rosacea (rose disease)-like symptoms on the skin of the face. such people may be diagnosed with demodicosis. The symptoms are:


-Itchy or scaly skin

-Reddening (flushing)

-Akin-like stains


-Increased skin sensitivity

-Burning sensation

-A skin that feels rough like sandpaper


-Eye redness

D. folliculorum becomes problematic only if it aggravates pre-existing skin problems such as rosacea, it can worsen acne, rosacea rashes and patches of dermatitis. Symptoms caused by mites belonging to D. Folliculorum can sometimes be confused with dry skin and acne, which can be serious. Controlling mites can help with the outcome of this type of inflammatory skin disease. The doctor can prescribe a cream that can help get rid of mites, as well as mites.

Who is at Risk?

D. folliculorum mites are generally harmless, but people who have the following conditions may have a high risk of getting these mites:

Those with weakened immune systems

Taking corticosteroids, such as prednisone

Those with a history of cancer or liver disease

Living with HIV

Skin infections

Acne, especially inflammatory types

Some other people may be genetically more sensitive to D. folliculorum and therefore the presence of mites. Also, D. folliculorum mites are sometimes more common in people with certain skin conditions. Examples of these are:

Rosacea (Rose Disease)

Rosacea is an inflammatory problem that causes redness, dryness, and redness on the face. Whether D. Folliculorum is a possible cause of rosacea is still being investigated. There is evidence that these mites can cause an exacerbation if a person has a rosacea problem. Some studies have found that a person with rosacea may have 4 times more Demodex mites on someone’s face than someone without this disease. Among people with rosacea, it is more possible to have a large number of demodex mites in the skin of people with subtype 1. D. folliculorum mites have been found to be in the tear ducts of individuals with ocular rosacea, a type of rosacea that is effective in the eyes.


Blepharitis is an eyelid inflammation that causes redness, watering, and crusting. It has been noted that demodex mites increase in people with blepharitis.

Androgenetic Alopecia

Hereditary hair loss problem called androgenetic alopecia can be seen in both men and women. It has been suggested that a type of chemical produced by mites can trigger an inflammatory reaction that affects hair follicles. Although Demodex mites do not cause direct androgenetic alopecia, they can worsen the condition.

Non-Specific Face Dermatitis

Increasing the number of demodex mites is also associated with non-specific dermatitis symptoms on the face. Some of these symptoms are acne-like spots, spots around the lips, and itching.

How is Demodex diagnosed?

D. folliculorum is microscopic in size, so people cannot diagnose its presence on their own. Since D. folliculorum is not visible to the naked eye, it is necessary to visit a doctor to get a definitive diagnosis. The doctor will take a medical history and examine the skin and scrape a small sample of follicular tissue and fat to diagnose mites. A skin biopsy examined under a microscope can determine the presence of these mites on the face. Dermoscopy typically shows prickly white structures that block follicular openings. Demodex can be found in the hair follicles on the face of mineral oil skin scraps or a skin biopsy examined under a microscope by KOH examination. It is important to determine the amount of mites that live on the skin. Few mites are unlikely to cause skin problems. Demodicosis is diagnosed when the density of demodex mites is high (> 5 / cm2).

Demodicosis Treatment

Demodex can only live in the human hair follicle and they do not cause problems when kept under control. In most cases, nothing needs to be done about mites unless they cause symptoms. Some home treatments can help get rid of D. folliculorum while also preventing their spread.

* Home Treatment and Prevention Strategies

– Wash or clean the face twice daily with a soap-free cleanser

– Every day, rub eyelids, lashes, eyelashes with a soft shampoo like baby shampoo.

-Gently rub the lashes with 50 percent tea tree oil solution, then apply tea tree oil or macadamia coconut oil to kill the eggs left behind

-Avoiding oil-based cleansers and oily makeup, which can provide more nutrients for mites

Periodic (once or twice a week) to remove dead skin cells

Keeping the skin clean and dry, addressing other underlying issues can help reduce the number of D. folliculorum mites.

* Medical Treatments

D. folliculorum mites are more likely to be seen on the face. Medical treatments are used when there are a large number of mites in the facial area. Their presence on the face can make treatment more difficult because the skin is very sensitive. Creams, gels and face wash products containing active ingredients such as benzyl benzoate, salicylic acid, selenium sulfide and sulfur can help treat. For D. folliculorum in eyelashes, a medicated ointment can be used. Treatment with acaricides is aimed at reducing excessive growth of mites, preventing the release of eggs into other hair follicles, and clinical treatment of symptoms and signs. Doctors may also prescribe an antibiotic drug, topical or oral metronidazole. In serious cases (such as those with HIV infection, people with a severely weakened immune system), ivermectin taken orally, that is, can be recommended. Doctors can also apply a highly concentrated alcohol solution to a person’s face. This brings Demodex mites to the surface. The doctor can then apply substances to the skin that kill mites and treat the condition. People who have problems can clean their eye area using demodex facial wipes or towels.

What are the Possibilities About Demodex Folliculorum?

For most people, the presence of D. folliculorum mites on their faces is harmless, but when they are in larger quantities, these mites can cause rosacea-like symptoms. The future of D. folliculorum depends on the underlying cause. People with inflammatory conditions such as rosacea and acne may have recurrent mites that aggravate the symptoms. Frequent skin infections can also increase the chances of mites returning. In most cases, no symptoms may be seen. Mites live a few weeks and usually disappear without symptoms. Few D. folliculorum mites can actually benefit as they can remove excess dead skin cells.

Resource: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3884930/

SEE ALSO: What is Artificial Heart? How Artificial Heart Works?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *