ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How to Treat Your Children for Head Lice

Updated on September 6, 2012

Head lice are a common nuisance for kids, especially kids that attend school or are in close contact with other kids. Lice are tiny, wingless parasites that feed on small amounts of blood in the scalp. They attach to the small, narrow hair shafts on the scalp, feast on the host's blood, and lay hundreds of their eggs. Kids tend to share things like hats, sporting helmets, clothing, towels, etc. making the transfer of lice between other children extremely easy.

The Signs & Symptoms

Check your child's scalp often; you will probably see lice eggs before you see any small bugs crawling around, unless the infestation is very bad. You will see eggs or egg shells still attached to the shaft of the hair. Lice are light brown or gray and about the size of a sesame seed. One of the symptoms of lice is an itchy scalp--your child may complain of itching, burning, or feeling something moving or crawling on their scalp. Areas most common to lice are behind the ears, on the scalp, or around the nape of the neck.

Treating an Infestation

The only way to get rid of lice is with medicated shampoo and combing out the lice and eggs. There are several options that are very effective, including Nix and Rid brands. There are several home remedies and natural treatments, but neither are effective. You can't "suffocate" the lice and eggs with things like olive oil, mayonnaise, or petroleum oil. You need to treat your child quickly and thoroughly to prevent spreading lice to other family members or children. Follow all package instructions carefully; keep in mind these products are insecticides!

In addition to treating your child's scalp and hair, you will need to remove the lice from anything that they may have come in contact with. Wash bedding, pillows, and clothing in very hot water, at least 130 degrees. Things that can't be washed in hot water need to be placed in an airtight bag for 2 weeks to kill the lice and eggs. Check the mattress, furniture and carpet for lice; a good, thorough vacuuming should do the trick.

Soak hair brushes, combs, hair bows, and anything else that has come in contact with the infected person in rubbing alcohol or treat with the same medicated shampoo.

How to Prevent Future Infestations

Remind your children not to share hats, scarves, sporting helmets, hair brushes, or anything else that comes in contact with other people's hair or head. All outbreaks at school should be reported to the teacher or school nurse. Children with lice should avoid contact with other kids until their lice are gone.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • parwatisingari profile image

      parwatisingari 

      6 years ago from India

      Ayurveda talks of ginger juice, what I did with my younger one is I would grate ginger, apply it to her scalp. after about 3 minutes wash it off.

    • teresapelka profile image

      Teresa Pelka 

      6 years ago from Dublin, Ireland

      What if you took a bath and kept your scalp underwater, reading a book? :)

    • aykianink profile image

      aykianink 

      6 years ago

      "You can't "suffocate" the lice and eggs with things like olive oil, mayonnaise, or petroleum oil." Seriously? They can be in mayonnaise and just laugh it off? Yikes...

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)