Pubic lice. Crabs. Genital parasites. Whatever one calls them, they all mean one thing: an embarrassingly itchy penis that necessitates refraining from sexual congress. As penis health issues go, pubic lice are more of a n annoyance than a crisis. Aside from the itchy penis, they may bring about a fever and a feeling of fatigue; and as with any itch situation, scratching too much and too intensely can result in an infection. But otherwise, pubic lice are just a pest.
Some men recommend shaving the pubic hair as a way of getting rid of pubic lice. But is this really the best approach?
On one hand, shaving the hair around the penis and balls does make sense. Pubic lice get their name because they tend to live in pubic hair, so getting rid of their “habitat” would seem a good way to get rid of the little buggers themselves. But looking further into the matter reveals this isn’t really the best treatment.
About pubic lice
As the name implies, pubic lice are similar to the lice commonly found on the head. They too are tiny parasites, but pubic lice generally stick to the pubic area – although they can very occasionally migrate to other hairy parts of the body, such as the chest or armpits.
Pubic lice are also called crabs because – well, because they look like crabs. However, they are very small – about one-tenth of an inch, and smaller when young – so it may be difficult to see their crablike shape in some cases. They start out as eggs (called nits), develop into a nymph phase and then transform into adults.
These parasites like to attach themselves to the skin and start feeding. An intense itch often follows.
If a person already has lice and they shave their pubic hair, it is possible that some of the lice will be caught up by the razor and disposed of. However, shaving alone is unlikely to catch the majority of the lice, and so shaving by itself is not an effective way to get rid of crabs. (By the way, if a person does shave his crotch while crabs are present, he needs to thoroughly wash the razor with very hot water to help kill the lice and send them down the drain. He should then dispose of the razor, in the event that any lice have remained on it.)
While shaving is not an effective way of killing pubic lice, it can be helpful in preventing crabs from infesting. With no pubic hair, they are easier to spot and to target for treatment. And less hair also makes it easier to apply medications aimed at killing the parasites.
Fortunately, there are several over-the-counter remedies for pubic lice that can be purchased at most drug stores. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends either a lotion with an ingredient called permethrin or a mousse with pyrethins and piperonyl butoxide. There are also prescription lotions and shampoos which a doctor can recommend.
Often eggs may be left after treatment and may need to be removed manually.
Clothing, bedsheets and towels should be washed thoroughly to kill any lice which may have fallen off the body.
Even after ridding the body of pubic lice, a guy may still have an itchy penis for a while. Utilizing a top drawer penis health creme (health professionals recommend Man 1 Man Oil, which is clinically proven mild and safe for skin) may be helpful. The best cremes help to moisturize delicate penis skin, which can ease the itchy feelings. Look for a crème with both a high end emollient (such as shea butter) and a natural hydrator (such as vitamin E). Strengthening the skin can also help, so the crème should also include a powerful antioxidant, such as alpha lipoic acid. This helps fight free radicals that can otherwise cause oxidative damage to the skin.