Self-management

Lifestyle and home remedies

You can get rid of pubic lice with a patient, thorough approach that involves cleaning yourself and any personal belongings that may be contaminated.

These steps may help you eliminate lice infestations:

  • Use lotions and shampoos. Choose from among several over-the-counter lotions and shampoos (Nix, Rid, others) designed to kill lice. Apply the product according to instructions. You may need to repeat treatment in seven to 10 days.
  • Wash contaminated items. Wash bedding, clothing and towels used in the two days prior to treatment with hot, soapy water — at least 130 F (54 C) — and dry them at high heat for at least 20 minutes.
  • Dry-clean or seal unwashable items. If you can't wash an item, have it dry-cleaned or place it in an airtight bag for two weeks.

Prevention

To prevent pubic lice infestation, avoid having sexual contact or sharing bedding or clothing with anyone who has an infestation. If you are being treated for pubic lice, all sexual partners must also be treated.

Dec. 12, 2015
References
  1. AskMayoExpert. Lice infestation. Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2015.
  2. Goldstein AO, et al. Pediculosis pubis and pediculosis ciliaris. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Oct. 15, 2015.
  3. Goldsmith LA, et al., eds. Scabies, other mites, and pediculosis. In: Fitzpatrick's Dermatology in General Medicine. 8th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2012. http://www.accessmedicine.com. Accessed Oct. 15, 2015.
  4. Hoffman BL, et al. Gynecologic infection. In: Williams Gynecology. 2nd ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2012. http://accessmedicine.com. Accessed Oct. 15, 2015.
  5. Parasites: Lice. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/parasites/lice/. Accessed Oct. 15, 2015