We are talking lice remedies, everything you need to know about head lice, nits, removal and more. Oh, and all about the lovely way teens selfies are spreading head bugs!, and selfies, teens and how to get rid of head lice.
Facebook is always full of all kinds of interesting things. Today, I logged into find a friend posting to a group of us alerting us that her and her 2 daughters had come down with lice.
Thankfully we were not able to go, avoided lice THIS TIME – but believe me we have had to get rid of lice many times before.
My Head Itches Writing About Head Bugs
If you have ever had to deal with lice, bless you. Lice does not discriminate. I never thought I would write this post but I didn’t think I would write about getting rid of rats either.
Just writing about lice makes my head itch. Yes, head itching is a side effect of these pesky bugs. Also, can we just refer to these things as head bugs from now on?
We once contracted the lovely head lice issue or head bugs issue while on vacation. We only had 2 kids at the time. Our son, who had been growing out his hair – had to have his head shaved. This post is about how to get rid of lice and while shaving your head will do the job, we have better tips!
Teens + Selfies = Lice
Well interesting enough – during my friends trip to the lice place – she learned an interesting thing. There were several teens at the lice treatment place and the lady doing her hair informed her that lice spreads between teens like mad. And the main reason? SELFIES.
Selfies and Lice
Teens take selfies all the time together. Think about the millions of Instagram photos where 2 or more teens are head-to-head posing for a selfie. If 1 teen has lice, the other teen or teens are sure to get this. Great, another fun aspect of parenting.
SELFIES DO NOT GIVE TEENS LICE — UNLESS ONE OF THE TEENS ALREADY HAS LICE.
All About Head Lice
Okay, I write this NOT to freak out about selfies or teens. I’ve been there, done that with lice – it is SO not fun people. If there is a lice outbreak that you know about in your area, or you get the dreaded letter home from the school nurse stating a child in your kid’s class has lice – don’t freak. ACT.
LICE is SO not fun but LICE HAPPENS.
10 Tips for Getting Rid of Lice for Good
Here are 10 tips to get you get rid of lice and learn about this annoyance invading heads of hair everywhere.
Home Remedies for Lice
These are most home remedies for lice. There are multiple ways to handle head lice – here are 10 tips to help!
If you receive a letter from the school nurse that there is a case of lice in your child’s class or learn that friends have lice – be diligent in checking your child’s head. Acting quickly is a must. You DO NOT want to deal with a lice infestation. The longer the lice are present, the more they reproduce. And the more lice reproduce the more you have to get rid of. Dealing with head full of hair with a lice infestation is not fun.
If you do find that your child is contaminated, please do contact your child’s school and let them know that your child has lice. The school nurse is not going to shame you or your child. This is something that happens and the best course of action is making sure that people know when it is present.
When checking for lice, you will need good lighting. Work under a bright light, such as a lamp or natural sunlight to look for lice. The main spots to check are the crown of the head, behind the ears and make sure you are evaluating the hair roots.
If you do find lice, you will need a good lice comb. This is a comb that we have used: the LiceMeister.
Divide hair into sections and work from the scalp to the end of the hair.
You can dip the comb into a cup of water, use a paper towel, or use the LiceMeister comb cleaning device to remove any lice, nits or debris from the comb between passings.
Lice Eggs (Nits)
Let’s learn all about Lice and their eggs, known as nits.
Look through that same section of hair for attached nits (lice eggs) and live lice. Lice eggs typically do not come out of the hair easily and can be confused with dandruff. Dandruff will flake off, lice eggs will not. You want to get rid of the lice eggs because these will hatch!
Lice Home Remedies
There are numerous lice home remedies. First, remember you must comb out the nits. Buy a nit brush. Lice are now resistant to many of the over the counter methods for lice removal. We always use natural remedies to get rid of the hair pests.
Natural Lice Remedies
If you are looking for a natural lice remedies, here are several natural ways to get rid of lice.
You will need a shower cap, I purchase several cheap shower caps in bulk as you will be using these for several days. If you have multiple family members you are naturally treating for lice, they will need their own shower caps.
Create a Overnight Hair Mask Using Coconut Oil, Tea Tree Oil and Peppermint Oil
Here is the natural lice removal recipe that we use for getting rid of nits and lice. Let’s just chalk this up as a life hack. Not necessarily one we want to do but we must. Here is what you will need to create the lice killing hair mask.
I create a massive jar of this as you will be using this nightly for several nights. Mix together coconut oil with several drops of tea tree oil and a few drops of peppermint oil. You will want to make sure that you do not get the oils in eyes, this stings. Also, peppermint is not recommended for younger children and can sting if there are any scratches on the scalp. Use peppermint in small increments.
After you have made the hair mask, will want to make sure that hair is brushed.
Next, we put this lice removal hair mask on with a shower cap and left on the hair for an hour.
After the hour is up, comes lice picking and nit removal time. Remember when we said to make sure the hair is brushed? This is why! You will need paper towels, a bowl of soapy water and a trash bag, in addition to your nit comb.
Make sure that you are in a well lit area and that you and the person you are removing lice from are comfortable because this could take a while, especially if you are dealing with long hair.
A major part of how to get rid of lice is learning about nit removal. It’s best to section hair off into pieces so that you know what areas you have already done.
Start at the scalp and pull the comb thru to the end. Wipe the comb off on the paper towel. You will be able to see if there are any live lice, dead lice or nits (aka eggs.) Then dump your nit comb into the water to make sure it’s clean. You don’t want to be re-homing the lice from one area to another!
After you have completely gone thru the entire scalp and hair, you will want to have the person with lice wash their hair out. I then blow dry the hair because the heat is not good for lice. We want to make them uncomfortable as possible!
Repeat Lice Treatment
Now this is where you are going to hate me. You will want to sleep with the hair mask on. Make sure to use the shower cap. This will help ensure that all nits are smoothered. We want to kill the nits and live lice and while yes, you just spent 2 hours of your life combing bugs out of someone’s hair – there is still a chance there are more.
In the morning, again – wash hair and blow dry, straight iron if you feel the need!
The next night, do a lice check. You may want to wear the hair mask for a few nights. Something else is even if you do not see lice for a few days, the next week do another lice check. Why? Nits hatch every 7-10 days. You miss a few of those little eggs and BOOM – they can come back loud and proud.
Over the Counter Lice Shampoos
Remember, all lice-killing products purchased are pesticides. If you choose to purchase an over-the-counter treatment, follow the directions carefully and use with caution.
Consult your pharmacist or physician before applying or using lice treatment pesticides when the person involved is pregnant, nursing, has allergies, asthma, epilepsy, pre-existing medical conditions, or has lice or nits in the eyebrows or eyelashes.
Never use products that contain lindane. Never use a pesticide on or near the eyes.
Contact Your Doctor If You Cannot Get Rid of Lice at Home
Contact your doctor if you are unable to get rid of the lice in a matter of days. Some doctors will prescribe a lice shampoo that is only available thru prescription.
Wash all clothes, stuffed animals, sheets, pillow cases (pillows), vacuum couches and carpets.
Repeat Lice Treatment
If additional nits (at least 3-5 per day) are discovered, this may signal that live lice may be on the head. Another thorough manual search is recommended at that time. Remember also that each day is a new day for the risk of a new infestation.
Daily screening is vital for anything that may have been missed and for identifying a new infestation as early as possible. We repeated lice treatment a week after we were “clean” using the lice home remedy with coconut oil listed above.
Lice Removal Facility
Consider contacting a lice removal facility to get rid of lice. This is best for working parents, I know we were desperate when our long haired teenager came home with a head filled with nits.
Now a days, there are places you can go and they will either come to you or you go to them. They have professional lice remover people who remove the lice and eggs from your hair, treat your hair. They guarantee it not to return (or will treat you again.) This service does cost a pretty penny.
My friend paid around $600 for treatment of 3 full heads of long hair. (I read that you maybe able to claim this on health spending, which I thought was interesting.) You of course, are still in the position of cleaning your house from top to bottom and doing laundry (including all sheets/pillows, etc.) It’s a nightmare.
In the Texas, check out The Lice Place.
- Here’s an interesting read on the matter from Time.com: Experts Claim Selfies Are Giving Teens Head Lice
Lice are Not Harmful
While yes, lice may make you itch – the thought is making my head itch as I type this. Lice are not harmful.
Head Lice 101
Let’s learn everything you want to know about head lice. I know, no one ever wants to know this stuff but if you are dealing with head bugs, you will need to know this.
What is the Lice Life Cycle?
The lice life cycle is as follows. Head lice can survive around 30 days on a human host. Without a human, they typically die in 24 hours.
Female louse lay 3-5 eggs a day. Those eggs hatch is 7-10 days. It takes 7-10 days after a louse hatches to be mature enough to lay their own eggs. All that said, take care of the problem sooner rather than later to prevent widespread lice infestation.
What Shape are Lice Eggs (Nits)?
Lice eggs and nits are always oval-shaped.
What Color are Lice Eggs?
While lice eggs / nits usually grayish-white they can vary in color.
Lice Eggs vs Dandruff
Viable nits are generally laid close to the scalp but can be found anywhere on the hair shaft.
How to Prevent Lice Eggs From Hatching?
Prevent lice eggs from hatching by killing them.
What is Head Lice?
Here is Lice info from the CDC. The head louse, or Pediculus humanus capitis, is a parasitic insect that can be found on the head, eyebrows, and eyelashes of people. Head lice feed on human blood several time a day and live close to the human scalp. Head lice are not known to spread disease
Who is at Risk for Getting Head Lice?
In the United States, infestation with head lice is much less common among African-Americans than among persons of other races, possibly because the claws of the of the head louse found most frequently in the United States are better adapted for grasping the shape and width of the hair shaft of other races.
Head lice move by crawling; they cannot hop or fly. Head lice are spread by direct contact with the hair of an infested person. Anyone who comes in head-to-head contact with someone who already has head lice is at greatest risk.
Spread by contact with clothing (such as hats, scarves, coats) or other personal items (such as combs, brushes, or towels) used by an infested person is uncommon. Personal hygiene or cleanliness in the home or school has nothing to do with getting head lice.
What Head Lice Tips Can You Share? Or have an awful lice story? SHARE IT. We hope this posts help you get rid of lice. Want to get rid of rats?
Follow Digital Mom Blog on Social