Neem use and scabies re-infestation: quarantined home rather than cleaning?
Last night I started using neem oil diluted in coconut oil on my scabies infection. Nothing miraculous yet, but I seem to be getting some relief. Keeping my fingers crossed...
I understand that re-infestation can be a real problem, and that getting scabies out of the home and not just off of the body is a big plus.
However, if properly used neem disrupts the life-cycle to the extent that mites can't reproduce, why all the preoccupation with bagging clothes up for 10 days, spraying sofas, carpets, drapes, etc.?
Most people in the world are not like our readers: they don't have access to hot water for laundry, and they certainly don't have dryers--most people in the world are obliged to hang their clothes out to dry. And they can't vacuum because they have neither vacuum cleaners nor the electricity to power them. My point/question is that 99% of households in the developing world would have been continually infested with scabies for the last 2000 years, if this extreme level of hygiene/eradication were necessary to overcome an infestation.
If scabies mites can only survive for 4 days without a human host, and if their eggs cannot hatch unless imbedded in a human host, then shouldn't proper use of neem on the humans who come into contact with one another or share living space be enough to eliminate these pests?
I live alone. If I continue to apply neem oil daily, and forget about washing & drying the bedsheets daily, spraying the mattress daily, spraying the sofa daily, etc., etc., won't I succeed in eliminating the mites anyway? Because even when mites climb back onto me at night from my bed, they're not going to succeed in reproducing! They'll ultimately die of old age and they won't have any offspring, right? So they'd be eradicated anyway whether I go nuts with cleaning the whole house daily like an operating room or not.
To me, it seems that the real issue is keeping "friendly" (non neem-using) human hosts away from your home, your bedding, your clothes, etc. as you eradicate the mites. Because if someone were to come over and spend the night in my bed tonite (2nd nite of using neem), mites could infest them as they sleep. They could get up in the morning and leave town for two months, over which time both myself and my home would have become free of scabies mites (provided I have no visitors) as I continue to use neem oil on my skin daily. So now two months later, if this same person returns (now infested with scabies) to my scabies-free home, and sleeps in my bed, I would get re-infested again!
Am I correct? No human host = no reproduction and therefore eventual death of the entire mite population. And that this is really why neem works. It doesn't kill them in one go. It just effectively prevents them from reproducing, so the population just grows "old" and dies out. Please correct me if I've misunderstood. Seems to me that a sort of "quarantine" is really what's required, rather than Howard Hughes-style hygiene.