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Natural Remedies For Head Lice - Unattainable For Orphans In Kenya

Updated on January 11, 2014

Children at The Rahab Centre For Orphaned Children

Constant Itching and Skin Irritation
Constant Itching and Skin Irritation

Head Lice Can Cause Misery

The orphans at the Rahab Centre for Orphaned Children in Mombasa, Kenya have had their share of misery. Head lice is a source of constant itching and skin irritation for them. Poor economic conditions prevent any kind of relief.

I have read that head lice pose no danger to chidren, but I wonder how much misery a child can take. I wonder how long we could allow these tiny blood-sucking leaches to reside in our hair without having a panic attack.

How hard it is to not scratch an itch! Certainly these children scratch! With scratching comes skin abrasions and with skin abrasions comes the possibility of infections. Little situations can become big problems for the underprivileged.

For those who can afford treatment, it might be a matter of simply going to the drug store and purchasing whatever method of eradication might work. From what I've read, some approachs work and some don't. Some work for a while and some don't. All modes of attack; however, cost money.

Headlice have nothing to do with cleanliness, but nearly all the treatments I've studied call for a thorough washing of the hair after treating. Washing hair and bathing require water. These orphans must purchase water as there is no indoor plumbing and no well. A simple achievement for us is often unattainable for others.

Most of the chemicals used to remove lice are pricey and have bad side effects. After all, they are insecticides. Neurological disorders are not uncommon. Natural, less expensive products and methods would be the safest course of action, but let's see what that involves:

* Fine tooth combs. There are combs made for the purpose of removing lice. This requires days of combing and for many ethnic peoples, much pain. With consistency, complete elimination can be accomplished.

* Listerine. Dousing the head with Listerine has been very successful. After wetting the hair with this antiseptic, cover with a shower cap for a couple of hours, then shampoo and rinse.

* Tea Tree Oil - A natural antiseptic that also works great used in moderation. After applying several drops, use the same routine mentioned above. Many report no more lice.

* Olive Oil - Reports state that the lice smother when covered with olive oil for a couple of hours and are then combed out with a fine tooth comb.

* Flat iron - This method seems to be the most successful and safest in all I've read. The flat iron could be used on all types of hair and is hot enough so as to fry the lice. Typically, the sound of popping is heard when the heat comes in contact with the parasite and they are instantly killed.

There are other methods such as mayonaisse, essential oils and petroleum jelly, but what good are they if there is no money to purchase even the cheapest of treatments?

I pray we never know extreme poverty or the misery of head lice. I also pray that we will always remember that many suffer constantly and yearn for a helping hand. I have pledged to be a constant reminder for a small group of orphans and their caretakers in Mombasa. Read more about them and get to know them personally. Go to Gitonga and the Rahab Centre for Orphaned Children.

For those who bless the poor, God promises to bless them (Ps 41:1-3; 112; Prov. 14:21; 19:17, 22:9, 14:31, 28:27; Isaiah 58:6-10).

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Head Lice

The Life Of Lice And Other Lousy Information

The intriguing little head louse has been with us for eons. They were one of the plagues sent upon Egypt by God as recorded in the Holy Bible, Exodus 8. Evidence also shows their existence in ancient Egyptian mummies. To say he's a resilient little pest is to put it mildly. We'll just call him "head strong."

We're going to learn some lousy information about the life of lice. Surprisingly, many people know nothing about them and have never known anyone that's been a target of their blood feasts. In fact, in America, every year only about 5% of the population suffers an attack by this tormentor.

How do you know if you have head lice? If the constant extreme itching all over your head doesn't give it away, the feeling of something moving or crawling on your scalp probably will.

To confirm the presence of head lice, a visual examination is all that's necessary. Usually the first thing you'll notice is the presence of the little empty egg sacks, called nits which are whitish and oval shaped and have a smooth surface. The mother louse uses her own type of adhesive to attach the eggs to a strand of hair very near the scalp. Here, they can hatch successfully with the aid of the warmth of the host's head.

When the baby louse hatches, he is called a nymph. As he grows to adulthood, he'll shed his outer shell three times, reaching the size of an okra seed when mature. He'll quickly turn from a light see-through color to a rusty color due to his constant source of food, blood from the scalp on which he lives.

The only place a head louse can survive is on a human head and that's just plain lousy! Once they find a home, they reproduce quickly. One mother louse can lay over two hundred eggs in her six week lifetime.

If in the unlikely event a louse becomes unattached from his human's head, he will only live 48 hours, even though he can survive under water for 24 hours! However, lice are equipped to hang on. Their six legs have claws that help them remain attached to the hair.

Lice do not have wings and cannot jump like a flea. They just crawl. One of the reasons why they might be less visible than the stationary nits is a louse can crawl very quickly thanks to his long front legs and is easily able to hide in a forest of hair.

The life of lice might not be so lousy, but they can certainly make our lives miserable. Thankfully, there are ways to lose your lice. With proper information and methods, you can live life lice free. Choose safe alternatives that do not involve the use of harmful chemicals.

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    • Anjili profile image

      Anjili 5 years ago from planet earth, a humanoid

      Uuuuuh. I hate the sight of lice. They can indeed be a menace to growing children. I usually encourage people with the problem to wash their hair daily, trim it short if not cut it off completely, them run through daily with a clean comb. The nit can't survive the torture. Ohhh, they look terrible especially when magnified. Good share. voted up and useful.