How Long Can Lice Live?

Lice Illustration

How Long Can Lice Live Without a Host?

Conditions such as temperature, humidity, moisture and availability of food determine how long lice can live.

Head Lice & Pubic Lice

For a lifespan longer than about 8 to 24 hours, head lice and pubic lice need temperatures of 82-86 degrees F, high relative humidity, and an easily obtained source of food (blood.) All of which are conditions closely associated with the human body.

Body Lice

Body lice do not live in constant contact with the human body. Instead they live in the seams and folds of underclothing worn on a person’s body, but they still need to feed on humans in order to survive.

When not able to obtain a blood meal, body lice will usually live only about one week and in harsh environmental conditions, even less time than that.

Resources

Dig Deeper on Lice

Human Head Lice

Bird Lice

Can you get rid of lice?

Q

Can you get rid of lice?

Lice

Can Adults Get Lice?

Lice Bites

Can You See Lice?

How Long Can Lice Live?

Book lice control: Do I have book lice?

Q

We have noticed in the last several days small (about the size of a small pepper flake) brownish-black bugs in our bathtub below the ceiling fan/vent (not near the drain or faucet), and around some of our windows. Any idea what they could be?

I have tiny white bugs in my bathroom

Q

I have very tiny white bugs in my bathroom. They stay in large groups and seem to move fairly quick. What are they?

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