Summary: There is nothing more annoying than being in public and having to scratch down there where you should not be scratching in public. Having pubic crabs leaves you little choice.
Having pubic crabs is painful as tiny little crab-like creatures crawl around and feed on your blood. This creates horrible itching, which is usually the first sign of a problem. Fear not! Although crabs are commonly spread through close body contact it is not a sexually transmitted disease (STD) and can be treated with little difficulty.
There are three types of crab lice that live on humans: head lice, body lice, and pubic lice, commonly known as crabs. Each type is different from the other in location, size and where they lay their eggs, but each is spread through close human contact crawling, not hoping or flying, from one person to the other. Crabs cannot be spread by pets. Once the louse falls from the body and can no longer feed on human blood it dies within two days. With the exception of body lice it is not known to spread disease. However, spread of secondary bacteria can be caused by excessive itching.
Head lice are found on the head and neck and attach their eggs to the base of the hair shaft. Head lice are most common to children, as children tend to play together in confined areas such as schools and daycares and share items such as hairbrushes, barrettes and hats without hestitation.
Body lice differ from the others as these lice lay their eggs on clothing, moving to the body only to feed. Body lice are most commonly found among people who do not launder or change their clothing regularly.
Having crab lice is not the end of the world although you might want to question your sexual partner about with whom he or she has been seeing. Although it is not an STD it is most commonly transmitted during sex because it is found on the pubic hairs - hence the term pubic lice. "I got it from the toilet seat" is possible, but not likely a truthful response, as crabs can only live one to two days once they no longer can feed on human blood.
To rid yourself of lice it is important to follow labeling instructions when using over the counter or prescription medicines as these medicines contain insecticides and can be harmful if misused or overused. Do not use the same medication more than two or three times if the treatment does not seem to be working. Instead, contact a doctor because this could be a sign of misuse or a resistance to the medication. Also, do not use more than one medicine at a time unless instructed to do so by a pharmacist or doctor.
To treat your home, wash all clothing and bedding that the infested person has come in contact with during the previous two days before being diagnosed. Washable items, including combs and other hair tools, should be washed in hot water (130 F) and dried with high heat for at least twenty minutes. Items that cannot be washed can either be drycleaned or sealed in a plastic bag for two weeks. Do not use fumigants or fogs as they are harmful to the environment and are not necessary. As previously mentioned, lice will die within two days once removed from their food source. Instead, simply vacuum the areas that the infected person may have come into contact with, such as carpet and upholstery.
If you wish to avoid the harsh chemical insecticides and use natural remedies there are numerous natural remedies that can be found on the internet that work by suffocating the lice and their eggs. There are some excellent articles about natural remedies to kill and remove lice and how to prevent lice with shampoos and conditioners.
To avoid lice infestations simply avoid hair-to-hair contact with others (one of many added benefits to shaving the pubic hairs) and do not share unlaundered clothing or items that touches the body's hair such as hats, combs, and barrettes.