A head louse is a tiny, wingless insect that lives among human hair and feeds by drawing small amounts of blood from the scalp. They are commonly found in children, three to 12 years of age, and are more commonly among girls. Head lice are not dangerous, but they can cause itchy scalp which can lead to skin irritation and infection. The movement of lice among the hairs tickles and can be very annoying. Lice are highly contagious so it is important that once detected, they are eradicated. Treatments for head lice are available over the counter, and they come in different preparations, but most often shampoos. Here are some steps to get rid of head lice.
- Fine-teeth comb
- Regular shampoo
- Regular conditioner
- Medicated shampoo or rubbing alcohol
- Hot water
- Shower cap
- Children under 2 years of age should not use medicated lice treatments and therefore, the lice must be removed by hand. To do this, wash the child’s hair every three days with shampoo, then conditioner. While the hair is wet and conditioned, use the fine-teeth comb to comb through the hair. The wet hair makes it harder for lice to move around and the conditioner makes it easy for the comb to pass through the hair. Once the lice fall out they will no longer survive. After the hair is dried, use a bright light to search for eggs by parting the hair with a comb. Pick out any egg that you see with your hand.
- Set the temperature controls on the washing machine to hot, then select the load size and wash cycle. Add bed linen, any towel that was used by a person infested with head lice, and clothing. If you do not have a washing machine, boil water and pour on the items in a pan and leave to soak.
- Use vacuum cleaner to vacuum carpets, rugs and all upholstered furniture. Cars must also be vacuumed.
- Soak all hair-care items such as combs, brushes and other hair accessories in medicated shampoo or rubbing alcohol for one hour.
- Follow the instructions provided on the label of the medicated shampoo and wash the hair accordingly for the length of time that is stated for the treatment to work.
- Use mayonnaise to cream the hair thoroughly. Cover with a shower cap. Leave on for two hours then wash the hair thoroughly with shampoo. Rinse.
Tips and warnings
- Do not wash your child’s hair for one to two days after using medicated shampoo.
- Do not use more than one head lice treatment at any given time.
- Avoid head contact as this is how lice are contracted.
- Do not share brushes, combs and other hair care items.
- Comb girl’s hair in updo’s so that it will be out of the way for lice can swing on the hair to other people’s hair.
Jenny Richards is a free lancer writer and content builder of http://www.folkremedy.net