By Sister Paddleme’ Tooshie
When I was a small nun I had frequent talks of sex and venereal diseases (that is what we called them at the time) with my mother and my grandmother. This is probably what warped me. One of my favorite talks was over a delightful lunch. I think I was a sophomore in high school, which really doesn’t matter, just gives depth to the story. Back to lunch. The story goes like this:
When my grandmother was a young girl, in high school herself, she and her friends would often ditch school and drive over to the Pismo Beach. Yes, Sister Paddleme’ is not from Seattle. I was cursed to live in the central valley of Cali – again, irrelevant. On one of her adventures, Grams brought some “friends” home. She had no idea. By the next day, she was having horrible itching “down there.” A few more days passed and the itching was unbearable. She knew she needed to see the family doctor but she was too embarrassed because she was “a good girl and good girls didn’t get this kind of thing.” But sure enough even “good girls” can get crabs from “toilet seats”. The cure was easy enough, the doctor gave her a special shampoo and, “He made me shave my beaver!” From that day forward she always trimmed her beaver.
Pthius pubis commonly known as Crab louse is the bug of the day.
This is what the little bugger looks like:
Crab Louse (a crab louse)
Crab Louse Egg (a crab louse egg, this one is glued to a hair)
Ok, Can you say, *Ouch!*? Look at those claws.
Pubic lice are normally spread by sexual contact and are considered a sexually transmitted disease, but can also be spread by sharing clothes or bedding. A common misbelief is that infestation can be spread by sitting on a toilet seat. This is not likely since lice cannot live long away from a warm human body. Also, lice do not have feet designed to walk or hold onto smooth surfaces such as toilet seats. I know that I said that is how my Grams got it. I just relayed the story. More than likely one of her friends was a whore and they shared clothes. Crabs can be found in any human hair. Most common is the pubic areas but they can also be found in eyelashes, beards, mustaches and armpits.
How do you know it the armpit/crotch you are diving into is infeted? OPEN YOUR EYES!! There are a couple of big clues:
- You SEE bugs jumping around.
- You can see little white beads on the hair. These are actually the egg pods. A female can lay up to 40 eggs at a time.
- The skin below the hair can have these funny, sometimes blue dots by the base of the hair. This is because the louse sucks blood to survive. Neat huh?
There are really no long term affects, other than insanity from itching, found with a crab’s infestation. I suppose you could get a little anemic, but there is no research to prove this. The main effect is ITCHING!! You can also get secondary infections at the sites where they suck your blood.
Pubic lice are easily killed with a 1% permethrin or pyrethrin lice shampoo, but the pubic hair must be shaved or combed with a fine-toothed comb to remove the nits. Lice can survive in bedding and clothing, so these items must be treated, sterilized, or contact with them must be avoided for two weeks, after which time any lice will have died. Lindane (1%), another pediculocide, is not recommended for pregnant or nursing women or for children less than 2 years old.
Take us home Sister –
I hope you have enjoyed my time of sharing with you. What big lesson do I want you to walk away with… Be careful out there. Know who you are bedding with. Take care of yourself; I think you are beautiful and I hope you do too.