What are Pubic Lice?
Pubic lice (also called Phthirus pubis) are small, wingless, parasitic insects that live in your genital area. They produce tiny eggs called nits which are similar in size to dandruff flakes and attach themselves to the hair shaft. Once these nits hatch, they multiply even more quickly. Pubic lice can cause intense itching and scratching, which sometimes leads to a secondary bacterial infection.
Although pubic lice can affect any part of the body; they generally favor the hairs of the genital area.
Symptoms and signs
The most common symptoms and signs of pubic lice include:
- Frequent itching and scratching of the pubic hair area
- Sores or small, red bumps on the genital area
- Nits (Pubic lice eggs) that appear as tiny, white, clear or oval-shaped dots ( usually sitting at an angle on the hair shaft)
What Causes Pubic Lice?
Pubic lice (crabs) are spread through person-to-person contact (usually during intercourse) and these pubic lice can inhabit the pubic hair, scalp, eyelashes, beard and armpit hair.
Help for Pubic Lice
There are several pubic lice treatments and these include over-the-counter and prescription medicated shampoos and lotions. These treatments are insecticides and contain very strong and toxic chemicals. Those who suffer from asthma, allergies, eczema or are pregnant should avoid using these products.
Another method to remove pubic lice is wet-combing and this involves using a fine-toothed comb. The hair is combed in sections from root to tip and it is generally easier to do this when the hair is wet. The comb should be checked for lice after each stroke or the hair can be combed over white tissue paper. Wet-combing should be done every three days for at least two weeks.
Natural remedies have proven to be a gentler and effective treatment option for pubic lice without the harsh chemicals used in insecticide products. There are many plants in nature that manage to ward off insects and parasites naturally! Three excellent herbal ingredients such as Azadirachta indica (Neem), Rosmarinus officinalis (Rosemary) and Lavender contain natural insecticidal properties and act as an anti-inflammatory and antiseptic.
These herbs together with aromatherapeutic ingredients such as Melaleuca alternifolia (Tea Tree Oil) and Pelargonium Graveolens (Rose Geranium) have the ability to eliminate parasites and prevent re-infestation.