What Do I Need to Know About Head Lice?

What Do I Need to Know About Head Lice?


Carol Gilbert, president of Fairy LiceMothers, shares what you need to know about preventing, treating, and getting rid of head lice.

What should I know about head lice?

Here is a simple list of things you need to know:

1. The only place in this entire world lice can survive is on a human head that has hair. This means lice cannot infest a place (house, car, school, camp) it can only live on a human head. When you have lice, the house cleaning is minimal—change sheets, boil brushes and combs, and vacuum couches and upholstery. Not every day, just the first day of treatment.

2. There is no product, even a prescription, that kills the nits (eggs) and washes them off the hair. This means lice removal is a manual process of using a good nit comb. Make sure to comb the hair in all four directions because the nits are glued to only one side of the hair strand.

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3. Lice removal is a two-week process. There is no quick fix for this. You must comb the hair for two weeks to ensure every nit is gone and to make sure you are not contracting lice back from someone else.

4. It is advised that parents check their children once a week when they don’t have lice. This means sit your kids down, remove tangles, and use a nit comb to comb through the hair. If you find evidence of lice or nits you will be happy that you found it at an early stage.

5. You get lice from head-to-head contact with someone who has lice. Lice are found on children more often because they play so closely together. But this is a human parasite, not a child parasite. Any age, race, or gender can get lice. It is a human thing. It does not mean people are dirty. It means a person was in contact with someone who has lice.

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