The pubic louse, or Pthirus pubis, is a parasitic bug that eats the blood of human beings. Pubic lice are also referred to as crab lice, or simply “crabs”. They have acquired this nickname due to their large front legs that look just like the pincers of a crab.
Pubic lice are sent via intimate physical contact, such as sexual relations, and are less frequently transferred by plagued products such as bedding or clothes. While lice can not live without a human host for more than two days, they are extremely nimble pests and can quickly climb on and connect to hair without detection.
Allergic Reaction to Pubic Lice
Pubic lice eat blood by biting skin at the base of a hair roots. They prevent clotting of the blood, a regular bodily repair work mechanism, by an anticoagulant in their saliva. This together with other substances in the louse’s saliva is seen as foreign by the human body immune system, resulting in a mild allergic reaction (inflammation and itching) around the bite. While the itchy sensation caused by the allergic reaction is more frustrating than hazardous, extreme itching can rapidly damage the skin of the infested area.
The Body’s Largest Organ: The Skin
You may have heard the factoid that the skin in the body’s biggest organ. However what exactly is its function? The immune system is generally what enters your mind when we think of defense versus disease. However the skin is in fact the first line of defense versus pathogens.
While the skin is virtually impenetrable, resistant to mild mechanical injury, and protects internal organs by blocking hazardous radiation, the skin also releases a little acidic secretions, making it an inhospitable environment to a lot of dangerous bacteria along with infections. Scratching can quickly compromise the skin’s integrity, allowing for much easier seepage of dangerous pathogens.
See also: Dangers of Not Treating Head Lice
How Can I Prevent Pubic Lice
While the secondary infections caused by a lice invasion can have frightening and painful results, such infections can be quickly avoided. There are many hair shampoos and lotions readily available both with a prescription or over the counter that work well.
Although lice can not live off of a human host for more than two days, all suspect bed linen, underwears, and other linens such as towels need to be cleaned in hot water and thoroughly dried under hot air. Pubic lice are most easily spread out during intimate contact, such as sexual intercourse.