Lice (Pediculus humanus capitis) are insects measuring between two and three millimeters that can appear on the head’s hair, eyebrows, or eyelashes. Lice lay their eggs, known as nits, which adhere to the hair in a dandruff-like shape and are difficult to remove. Once settled, they survive by feeding on blood that they extract from the scalp.
Lice are most often spread among children and can cause itchy heads or small red bumps on the scalp. Animals cannot be carriers of human lice according to Lice Doctors Riverside CA.
Generally, lice are caused by contagion through another person who carries them, either by direct contact or by sharing personal hygiene objects such as brushes, combs, or towels. Lice crawl when it comes to moving, as they cannot jump or fly.
Lice have a maximum life of 30 days, but when they remain in the hair, they can deposit nits, which can last up to two weeks in that form until they hatch.
The appearance of lice is not related to personal hygiene or health since they do not carry any disease or cause pathologies in people who have them. On the other hand, they tend to appear more frequently in crowded living conditions.
They also do not occur more frequently in people with long hair, although it is true that long hair serves as a bridge for these insects to colonize new hosts.
Lice infestation, called pediculosis, causes itching and irritation of the scalp. These symptoms can take between four and six weeks to manifest themselves, the maximum time that the immune system may need to develop sensitivity to the saliva secreted by these insects, which causes a reaction. During this period, females can lay six to 10 units per day.
On some occasions, the infected person may develop hypersensitivity due to an allergic reaction to the lice or treatment to combat head lice. The most severe inflammatory reactions can last for months so that the infestation can be ended and the head still itches according to Lice Doctors Riverside CA.
Myths About Lice
Lice Are Detected Immediately.
The saliva generated by this insect can take between four and six weeks to produce sensitivity and alert the immune system. During this time, females can lay six to 10 nits each day.
Lice Bite When Biting The Scalp.
These parasites do not bite. The itch is our body’s reaction to the saliva secreted by the insect.