Do lice prefer certain blood types?
Many myths about lice have been created over the years, one of which is that lice are attracted to certain types of blood.
The reality is that, while this is a widely popular myth, there is some truth in it. However, that part of the truth has almost no impact on your child's chances of getting lice or not. Let's explain ...
Lice are attracted to all types of blood
First, lice do not need to have the same blood type as their host, and lice do not prefer a specific blood type. Therefore, regardless of whether your child is A, B, AB or O, this will not increase or decrease your chances of getting lice. However, the lice 'ability to transfer from one head to another is based on the compatibility of the Rh factor in the new host's blood.
What is a Rh factor?
In addition to its type (A, B, AB or O), blood may have a positive or negative Rhesus factor, or Rh factor, which is the presence or absence of a certain type of protein found on the outside of blood cells. For this reason, each blood type can be grouped as Rh positive or Rh negative.
Lice need the same Rh factor in a new host
After hatching, lice must continue to feed on blood with the same Rh factor for life. This is because if the Rh factors change, the incompatibility will cause the intestinal tract to explode. For this reason, lice will remain in the original host, even if there are other feeding areas nearby.
Therefore, lice can only be transferred from one person to another if the previous host and the new host have the same Rh factor. This means that children A +, B +, AB + and O + can pass lice to each other. On the other hand, A-, B-, AB- and O- can pass lice to each other.
Lice will alter the Rh factor to prevent hunger
In the event that a louse is starving, it can feed on a host with a different Rh factor. Yes, that will eventually lead to the death of that louse. However, if the louse is a female capable of laying her eggs before she dies, the infestation will continue unimpeded - as her young will be compatible with the new host from the moment they start feeding. After all, survival is a louse's main instinct.
Blood type is not important
In the end, it is true that the speed with which lice are able to spread in a group of children may depend on the positive or negative Rh values of the blood. And on rare occasions, your child can avoid infestation if the Rh factor is incompatible with that of another lice-infested child. However, due to the prevalence of each blood group, as well as lice, the likelihood of your child being infested will be the same.
Professional lice treatment in the Algarve
It is important to know the truth about lice infestations to see what is a real concern and how to get the right treatment. Many parents come to Happy Heads Clinic because we inform them of facts that refute the myths.
Get rid of lice with the help of professionals
Happy Heads Clinic is a professional lice treatment center in Faro, Algarve. Find out about our treatment that can eliminate lice in just over an hour! Our professionals offer the best and most comfortable care to treat lice.