As well as treating roundworm infections with medicine, the infection can be controlled by improving sanitation and health education.
Although treatments are usually effective, preventing roundworm infections that affect tropical countries is very challenging.
Good hand hygiene can help prevent the spread of roundworm.
Always wash your hands thoroughly:
- after using the toilet
- after changing a nappy
- after touching soil
- before preparing and eating food
You'll need to take extra precautions when travelling to parts of the world where it's hot, there's poor sanitation, and roundworm is widespread.
Places where roundworm is particularly widespread include:
- Asia – particularly China, India and the large islands of East Asia, such as Indonesia
- sub-Saharan Africa (all the countries south of the Sahara Desert) such as Kenya and Nigeria
- South and Central America, and the Caribbean
- the Middle East
If you're travelling to these parts of the world, you should:
- only drink bottled or boiled water
- avoid eating raw fruit or vegetables
- wash your hands thoroughly if you come into contact with soil
- eat hot food that's been cooked thoroughly