Head Lice

  • Two words that make parents cringe when they hear them!

    Live lice

    Live Lice

    And their egg sacks called Nits 

    Nits

    Remember, head lice do not fly or jump, they crawl.

    ANYONE can be infected with head lice. It is not about being clean, just about being in the right palce at the right time for a louse to walk on to your head or be transferred there by :

    • sharing hats
    • sharing coats or other clothing that would supply a route to your head
    • sharing combs, brushes or other hair items
    • upholstered furniture
    • bedding
    • stuffed animals

    There are chemical shampoos available but frankly, I do not recommend using them, especially on children. The head lice have become resistant to the pesticides and often the harsh chemical treatments are not effective.

    The most effective way of removing all nits (eggs) and live lice is to use a long tooth lice comb.

    lice comb

    Comb your student's hair until you no longer can find any more nits or lice. It is also recommended to use the lice comb at least daily for up to two weeks to be sure no new eggs have hatched and your student has not become re-infested. 

    All Natural Lice Shampoo

    • 1 Cup Apple Cider Vinegar - DO NOT USE WHITE VINEGAR
    • ¼ Cup shampoo – any kind will do

    How to use:

    1. Wet hair with warm water
    2. Add 2 ounces of vinegar/shampoo mixture to hair and massage for 5 minutes – DO NOT RINSE
    3. Add 2 more ounces and massage 5 more minutes. DO NOT RINSE
    4. Leave product on hair and scalp for 15 minutes
    5. With shampoo still in the hair, comp through the hair with any fine tooth comb to assist in removing the nits that have been released.
    6. Rinse thoroughly with a strong spray of very warm water. The lice and the nits will rinse out
    7. Inspect under bright light

    This shampoo does not contain harsh chemicals and should not harm your child. 

    It is recommended that you use this shampoo mixture every day until all nits and lice are removed from the hair.

    The shampoo and cider vinegar solution helps to loosen the grip the nits have on the hair shafts so it will be easier to comb out with the fine, long tooth comb. Using the special comb frequently for the first 3 days and then at least daily for then next two weeks is the most effective way of controlling head lice.

    There are countless suggested ways to rid one of these dreaded infestations. We ask you to use a large dose of common sense as you come across unique suggestions. Please DO NOT EVER use a flammable substance on your student's head or body as a treatment.

     

    Cleaning Household Items to Get Rid of the Lice

    
Nothing beats nit picking when it comes to effectively removing nits from the hair.
Remember, head lice do not fly or jump, they crawl.
Reinfestation of lice usually does not come from household items such as carpets or furniture. For some chronic cases, intense cleaning may be necessary. Keep reading for tips on cleaning your home.
Remember...



    • Off the head, adult lice usually cannot survive for more than a day or two. Nits off the hair will die within hours of hatching if they can't find a meal (blood). So, there is no point in cleaning every nook and cranny.

    • Pets do not carry human head lice. They do not need any special cleaning.

    • Evidence shows that lice sprays are not effective in killing lice or nits. They only put poisons into the air. Save your money and avoid buying lice sprays!



     

    Things to wash in a washing machine

    • Wash items using very hot water or dry items in the dryer using high heat for 30 minutes. The heat will help kill the lice and nits.
    • Bath towels

    • Coats

    • Washable rugs, hats and scarves

    • Sheets, blankets, and pillow cases

    • Stuffed animals in contact with head and neck



     

    Things to sanitize

    • To sanitize these items, soak the item in 1/4 cup bleach to 1 quart cold water for one hour.
    • Brushes, combs, and special nit loosening combs

    • Barrettes, other hair holders

    • Detachable foam pads inside bike and sport helmets



     

    Things to vacuum

    • Rugs and carpets

    • Car seats

    • Chairs and couches

    • Pillows from a couch or bed (wash the pillowcases)

    • Bed mattresses

    • Stuffed animals in contact with head and neck



     

    Another cleaning option

    • 
Items exposed to lice, such as stuffed animals, should be placed in a plastic bag and closed tightly for two weeks. During these two weeks the lice and nits will not have food (blood) and will die.

    It is very annoying and extremely time consuming to rid your student and home of nits and lice. Comb, Comb, Comb using the special lice comb - it is the best defense and offense against head lice. Rather than think if it as a chore, think of it as an opportunity to spend time with your son or daughter. We are all so busy and rarely get to spend larger blocks of time with individual children. Good luck and don't hesitate to call the health office if you have further questions.