Demodex Test: How to Diagnose Demodex Mite Infection

demodex test

If you wonder if you have a Demodex infection or are looking for a straightforward explanation of how the Demodex mite test works, this article is probably what you are looking for. After a brief introduction about Demodex mites and their complications, this article fully explains the methods to diagnose this parasite.

Demodex Mites and Their Symptoms

Demodex is a genus of mites that lives predominantly near all mammals’ pilosebaceous units. So far, scientists have identified 65 species of them, among which folliculorum and Demodex Brevis are the only species that live on humans. They usually move between the skin’s surface and its depth. Demodex mites crawl with eight stubby legs clustered in their front third, spread through the skin’s pores, and fit deep into the follicles and sebaceous glands. These parasites tend to avoid the bright lights, spend most of their time hooked under the skin, and only come to the skin surface at night.

Although Demodex infestation usually remains asymptomatic, they may be responsible for exacerbating skin lesions when they grow in number. The symptoms usually occur when there are more than five mites per square centimetre of skin.

Demodex mites can aggravate, mimic or even cause the following concerns:

How to Diagnose a Demodex Mite Infection

Since they are only 0.1 – 0.4 mm long, observing and counting Demodex mites with the naked eye is impossible. Rather, scientists have designed indirect methods to track down, detect, and count them. Sampling and counting parasites under a microscope is a standard method employed in various studies. An online test, on the other hand, examines the severity of symptoms as well as the mites’ growth aiding factors using a questionnaire.

Each of these methods (microscopic Demodex diagnostic test and online quiz) has its pros and cons, which we will examine.

Demodex Microscopic Diagnostic Tests

  • Standardised Skin Surface Biopsy (SSSB)
  • Direct Microscopic Examination (DME)

Standardised Skin Surface Biopsy (SSSB):

SSSD is the gold standard technique for diagnosing Demodex infection, which is performed in the following steps:

  • Clients are guided not to clean the affected zone for at least 12 hours.
  • A standard surface area of 1 cm2 is drawn on a glass slide with a waterproof pen.
  • A drop of cyanoacrylate adhesive is put on the glass in the 1 cm2 area.
  • The adhesive containing surface is laid to the affected part of the skin.
  • Then removed gently after being allowed to dry (about 1 min).
  • After removing the side, the sample is clarified using a few drops of immersion oil and covered with a coverslip.
  • Demodex mites are counted under a lens with a magnification of × 40, × 100.
demodex test

Direct Microscopic Examination (DME)

DME is another valid microscopic test to detect demodex infection:

  • A drop of paraffin is placed on the slide and a drop on the client’s skin. (Potassium hydroxide may be used.)
  • Paraffin is spread on the skin to prevent the collected sample from slipping.
  • An area of 1 cm2 of the affected skin is squeezed between the thumb and index finger.
  • Then, fresh secretions of oil glands and skin scrapings are collected using the blunt end of a sterile scalpel. 
  • The sample is transmitted to a microscope slide, mixed with a drop of glycerine, then covered with a coverslip. 
  • Demodex mites are counted under a lens with a magnification of × 40, × 100.

The dermatologist diagnoses Demodex infection in both microscopic methods if the number of parasites exceeds 5 per square centimetre.

Demodex Online Diagnostic Test

Demodex Online Diagnostic Test is a questionnaire consisting of multiple-choice questions. These inquiries examine the symptoms of Demodex as well as the elements that assist them in growing. For example, pruritus, rosacea, and dermatitis are Demodex parasite infection symptoms that the online test measures. On the other hand, factors such as weak immune system, being old, poor mental status, etc., significantly impact the Demodex mites’ population. By examining all these factors in total and assigning different weights to the answers, this questionnaire examines the individual’s status in terms of Demodex infection. It provides the results in four tiers immediately after the test. The green colour, which indicates the low density of Demodex, is the most favourable condition, while yellow, red and purple indicate moderate, high and very high numbers of these parasites, respectively. Individuals with a high Demodex density would better seek a solution to control them abruptly.

Ungex products, including PDT and SDT, are specifically formulated to solve the Demodex-originated problems and even prevent them. Individuals with a moderate density of parasites would better stop Demodex from overgrowing by applying these products once a week.

Microscopic vs. Online Demodex Testing

Although counting Demodex mites under a lens sounds ultimately practical and convincing, the Demodex microscopic test has its drawbacks like other types of procedures. Some of the microscopic test challenges are as follows:

  • Requires great precision; the results may vary depending on technician skill.
  • Results vary based on light changes over the day. 
  • The result of the microscopic test can change in different types of skin (Oily skins carry more Demodex on the surface while in dry kinds, Demodex mites tend to hide in depth.)

In contrast, online testing does not have the shortcomings of microscopic testing, but it may seem unreliable because it is not based on observation. However, our studies in recent years have revealed that online testing accurately estimates the density of Demodex. This test is available anywhere in the world for free and helps all those who suffer from skin problems to evaluate their Demodex mite’s density.


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19 thoughts on “Demodex Test: How to Diagnose Demodex Mite Infection


    Hi I no I have some kind of mute on my body I feel them moving and they are in my hair and eyes all over me cannot sleep or do much at all I have copd bad Lungs and realy need help my doctor just had a little luck at me said nothing is on my skin I no this is not true please help me thank you

    • Sepideh Ghaffari says:

      Hi Miss Tracey,
      Sorry for the late reply. Demodex mites are microscopic parasites, so some dermatologists don’t that much attention to them since they are invisible to the naked eye. You can book a time to speak about your problem with our consultant here

      • Sepideh Ghaffari says:

        Hi Lela,

        Thanks for your comment. I have to add that Demodex mites are microscopic mites, so if you see them, they might be other mites or insects. Our products can help some other mites or insects to be removed too. You may read it here.

    • Sepideh Ghaffari says:

      Hi Lisa,
      Thank you very much for asking your question here.
      Demodex usually lives under the surface layer of the skin. And they travel between the surface of the skin and the layers below it. But they do not have the power to penetrate the intestines. I think your problem is another complication and you may need a colonoscopy for further investigation.

    • Dei says:

      Hi I believe I have demodex mites internally and externally, they are in my nose, mouth, back of throat, outer and inner ears, back and chest. Have staph in my outer right ear, infection in both ears, staph on my face. I clean my face 3/4 times a day with a ph face cleanser. I also use this for the rest of my body. This slows the mites down for awhile! I have sores inside my nose, face, back,chest, buttocks and I can feel them coming out of my anus biting me and when they bite the bite (I do not have worms) as I have been tested. I have been on antibiotics, that slows them down while I’m on them, within 2 / 3 days of finishing the antibiotics. They come back, I don’t know how to break the cycle! New findings have shown that they can live internally! Had a colonoscopy etc…

      • Sepideh Ghaffari says:

        Hi Dei,

        Thanks for your comment. I’m so sorry for hearing you’re suffering from this issue, but I don’t think this problem is related to Demodex mites. Since they are very small and you can’t feel their bitings. Also, they can’t live inside of the body. I think maybe there’s another type of mite that make you annoyed. But if you still think that Demodex mites are the reason of your problem, you may use our PDT spray, which lets you feel much better.

      • Amanda bruen says:

        Hi there. I just got done reading your post and I have been going through the same thing for 2 years now. I would love to discuss with you. Please google me and my number will come for you to text.

  2. Angela Camacho says:

    I have been dealing with this problem for over 7 years. I was overly infested for the past two years. I have minimized them with a home made oil and everytime i think i got the recipe and I’ve been close they come back harder. The lastest recipe I’ve made us made from essential oil Diatinacia earth and herbs and spices. I have made an oil and it literally rubs them off of me in seconds. But there are a few who are deeply embedded. I have become suicidal and depressed. I’m am so tired of fighting this battle it wears me out continuously cleaning and reading and trying new ingredients. My family has deemed me insane. my psychiatrist tells me it’s a mentally disease and treats me with phziphernia meds. I’m so tired death seems like heaven

    • Sepideh Ghaffari says:

      I am sorry to hear that you have been dealing with a Demodex mite infestation for such a long time. It sounds like you have tried many home remedies, but may not have found one that completely gets rid of them. I understand how frustrating and exhausting this battle can be, and I want to assure you that you are not alone in this struggle. However, there is hope! Ungex offers a range of anti-Demodex products that have been specifically designed to target and eliminate these mites. Our products have been tested and proven to work effectively, giving you relief from the symptoms and a lasting solution to the problem. It is understandable that you may feel hopeless at this point, but I strongly encourage you to give Ungex a try. You deserve to live a life free from the constant burden of Demodex mites, and our products can help make that a reality for you. Don’t give up, there is a solution out there for you.

  3. James says:

    I have been suffering with demodex for the last year. I have roseacea and have used ivermecitin cream.
    Today I went to the third dermatologist who did a skin scratch test. I was advised that I have no demodex mites and the sensation is all in my head.
    My skin looks terrible and I am noticing acne scars on my skin.
    I am lost and there seems to be no hope in sight . I am a 70 year old man and have no desire to continue living but I dont want to hurt my loved ones.
    Due to my age I have the feeling that doctors are not interested in my condition.
    Please advise.
    Does ivermectin change the appearance of facial skin?
    Some of the marks on my face look like burrowing trails.

    • Sepideh Ghaffari says:

      I understand your frustration with the conflicting information you’ve received, but it’s worth considering that Demodex mites may still be a potential factor in your condition. While it’s true that Ungex products may not directly remove existing acne scars, they can help manage rosacea symptoms associated with Demodex mite overgrowth. Ungex offers specialized products formulated to target Demodex mites, which could potentially alleviate some of your skin concerns. It might be beneficial to consult with our team here.

  4. Linda says:

    I have been to so many Doctors that won’t even consider that these mites exist. I have tried some treatments but none work. They are now sending me to mental health Doctor. They have taken over my whole body and just move when one spot is under control. There has to be a pill that will kill the entire colony.

    • Sepideh Ghaffari says:

      I’m sorry to hear about your frustrating experience. Dealing with Demodex mites can be challenging. If you’re seeking alternative options, you might want to explore the Ungex Demodex treatment products. These products are designed to target Demodex mite concerns, often utilizing natural ingredients. It’s important to address both the physical and emotional aspects of this issue, so consulting with a mental health professional could also provide valuable support. Please be in contact with our consultants here.

    • D says:

      Need help! I’m not sleeping do to the itching and crawling sensation. I’m also losing my hair 😢 and have ringing in my ears. Plz help me!

      • Sepideh Ghaffari says:

        I’m sorry to hear about your distress. It sounds like you might be experiencing symptoms that could be related to an overgrowth of Demodex mites on your skin, known as Demodex infestation. These mites can cause itching, crawling sensations, and sometimes contribute to hair loss. Please be in touch with our consultant here.

  5. Jack Ballistrea says:

    Hello Sepideh

    Thank you for all of this information. This is really helpful. A lot of this information validates the experiences I have had. I believe I’ve been dealing with a mite infestation beginning in 2018. I’m incredibly desperate right now as I believe they have made their ways into my ear canals. Listen, I understand how bizarre this sounds, but all of the evidence in the things I’ve experienced points in this direction. It wasn’t long after first realizing I had bites that I could feel things moving in my ears. It’s been a real struggle the past few years trying to get the help of ANY medical professionals to effectively evaluate this. Do you happen to have any contacts or resources I might be able to connect with to discuss this further? I’ve exhausted the traditional american medical system with no luck. I need to connect with people who are informed on this and can offer recommendations, unlike any of the doctors I’ve spoken with. Any help would truly be appreciated. Thank you so much.


    • Sepideh Ghaffari says:

      Hi Jack,

      I’m sorry for what you’re experiencing. Contact Alex, the Ungex consultant here. They specialize in Demodex mite-related issues and can help determine if your problem is related to them. Or you may call or message this number: +61 497 472 333
      Wishing you the best in finding relief.
      Take care.

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