The Different Types of Lice and How to Tell if You Have Them

The thought of several tiny mites crawling around on the scalp is enough to give anyone the jitters. Lice, or pediculosis, are a group of parasites that attach themselves on to hair and suck blood out of the scalp in order to survive. A lice infestation or two is common amongst school-going children. If unchecked, a lice outbreak can be a tough thing to deal with. Generally, people think of lice infestations as only affecting the head, as it is the most common one; but there are other types as well. The three types are:
  • Head lice
  • Body lice
  • Pubic lice or crabs
Let’s take a closer look at all three.

Head Lice – Pediculus Humanus Capites

Head Lice – Pediculus Humanus Capites Head lice can be found anywhere on your scalp or they can attach themselves on your hair strands. They particularly like to feed off of blood from the tender nape of the neck area. Lice infestations are among the most common type found and are usually more widespread in children of school-going age. Head lice lay eggs, or nits, on the hair shafts, and the infestation perpetuates once the nits hatch. They can spread through head-to-head contact. Unlike the other two types, head lice are not caused due to lack of hygiene.

Body Lice – Pediculus Humanus Corporis

Body lice are a little harder to locate on the skin because when they are not feeding, they tend to hide inside the seams and folds of clothing and lay their eggs there. They usually live in the linings and folds of clothing items and beddings and only move to the body when they want to feed. Body lice are more dangerous as they carry diseases such as typhoid, relapsing fever, trench, or more. They occur more as a result of unhygienic conditions and not bathing frequently. They are also not that common in the U.S. and are found more in places with no proper sanitation.

Pubic Lice – Pthirus Pubis

As the name suggests, this type of lice infests the genital region and can hide and fester in pubic hair. While the head and body lice gave similar physical characteristic, the body of a pubic lice resembles a crab, hence the nickname. The body is rounder, with the first pair of legs near its head. It thrives in the coarse hair of the pubic and perinatal regions, but can also crawl to the eyebrows, eyelashes, or body hair if the person is especially hairy. Pubic lice can either be contracted through sexual intercourse with a person who has them or by sitting on a toilet seat soon after someone else who has them has sat on it. Since it is found in the pubic hair, pre-teen children usually can’t contract them.

About Lice Troopers

Lice Troopers is a professional lice clinic in Miami Beach and Key Biscayne. We are a team of professional hair care experts, offering the best lice treatment in addition to other lice removal services. For more information, visit our website and contact us for a free consultation today!