The Weird Way Lice is Spreading

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We are talking lice 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. A few of the girls in our group had been over this weekend (we weren’t there, unfortunately – now fortunately).

MY HEAD IS ITCHING JUST WRITING THIS.

If you have ever had to deal with lice, bless you. We once contracted the lovely head lice 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.

Me and my daughter spent every night for a week in coconut oil and olive coil hair masks. My husband spent many nights picking nits. It was awful.

lice and selfies the weird way lice is spreading thanks to technology

 

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 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.

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, I recommend you suggesting to your teen to hold off on the selfies or to watch who they selfie with. LICE is SO not fun! AND JUST IN CASE you have a case of lice (ugh, prayers)

teens lice spreading thru selfies

10 Tips for Getting Rid of Lice

Here are 10 tips to get you get rid of lice and learn about this annoyance invading heads of hair everywhere. 

Getting Rid of Lice

Contact the School

Contact your child’s school and let them know that your child has lice. If you receive a notice from school that there is a case of lice in your child’s class, be diligent in checking your child’s head. The longer the lice are present, the more they reproduce.

Good Lighting

Work under a good light, such as a lamp or natural sunlight to look for lice. Look at the roots and behind ears.

Lice Comb

Use a lice comb, such as the LiceMeister.

licemeister lice comb removing lice eggs

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

Look through that same section of hair for attached nits (lice eggs) and live lice. 

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 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. 

Lice Home Remedies

There are numerous lice home remedies. First, remember you must comb out the nits. Buy a nit brush.

Natural Lice Remedy

If you are looking for a natural lice remedy, consider using a mask of coconut oil and virgin olive oil under a shower cap. We were able to treat lice this way (though it took 10 days to completely get rid). You must comb your hair daily with a lice comb.

We also including use of coconut shampoo and conditioner for the weeks during and after finding out we had lice. I added peppermint essential oils added to the shampoo. 

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 Everything

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 remove the lice.  

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.

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 

Here is Lice info from the CDC:

What are head lice?

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?

Head lice are found worldwide. In the United States, infestation with head lice is most common among pre-school children attending child care, elementary schoolchildren, and the household members of infested children.

Although reliable data on how many people in the United States get head lice each year are not available, an estimated 6 million to 12 million infestations occur each year in the United States among children 3 to 11 years of age.

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. 

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