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Pubic lice

Written by Healthwords's team of doctors and pharmacists based in UK | Updated: 25.04.2023 | 1 min read

Pubic lice are known unaffectionately as crabs, as they are small insects that grip onto pubic hair and stay there. They will feel intensely itchy, much like lice on your head, and you may be able to see them as tiny black specs.

Is this condition contagious?

Pubic lice are contagious and are spread mainly by skin-to-skin contact - they jump from person to person. It's possible – though much rarer – for pubic lice to be spread through sharing clothes, towels and bedding.

Pharmacist recommended products

When should I see my doctor?

You should see your doctor or sexual health centre so that you can be treated. Clean the bed sheets, as the lice can spread to your partner, or anybody who sleeps in the same bed. It is important that you avoid any sexual contact until treated, as lice can be spread through skin contact.

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