3 lesser-known tips on fighting lice

     Mother treating daughter's hair against lice image courtesy of Shutterstock.com

    Mother treating daughter's hair against lice image courtesy of Shutterstock.com

    The most feared bug in schools is also one of the tiniest. So scary that even its eggs wreak havoc both in the classroom and at home. It’s those lousy lice and their nit-picky progeny.

    Not that we would know anything about them in our house. And not that there’s anything wrong with having them. Just, you know, if you know someone who has them…. a friend… maybe you could pass some of this information along.

    Lice are small bugs (think sesame seed size). They are difficult to spot and the nits are even trickier without a magnifier.

    The life cycle is relatively short. It takes one week for nits to hatch, and they grow to adult size (and can lay more nits) in about another week.

    They feed off of human blood like tiny little vampires, so they can only live off of the human scalp for 1-2 days. On humans, they can live for up to 30 days.

    They can withstand hot water and soap, so showering doesn’t get rid of them.

    They like clean hair, but they allegedly dislike tea tree oil and coconut (so look for shampoos with those ingredients to help with prevention).

    There are lots of treatments. You’ve probably heard of Rid and Nix, common chemical treatments designed to annihilate the little beasts. Or maybe you’ve tried natural treatments, including remedies like coconut oil and mayonnaise.

    But there are three alternatives you may not know about:

    1. Call in the professionals. There are now lice treatment professionals who will do all of the nit-picking and combing for you. Not for a small fee, but it may be worth it, depending upon your ability to handle all the treatment and maintenance yourself.

    2. Call your doctor. There is an oral medication used for years to treat parasitic infections that is now being used by some doctors to treat lice.

    3. Buy some face cleanser. Yes, one of the most effective (in terms of results, cost, and sanity) is the Nuvo treatment. It’s relatively mild and appears to be a promising option.

    Please feel free to pass this along to your… friend, if you think it might help.

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