Hygiene and Head Lice Infestation

A lice infestation is a nasty annoyance that no one wants to deal with, but these creepy pests can infect anyone. Studies show that there are approximately twenty-five million infestation cases every year in the United States alone. However, it is possible to treat and control this nasty problem. Here are some facts and hygiene and head lice infestation and what you can do to prevent an outbreak in your family.

Head lice are parasites that live on the scalp and feed on human blood. Anyone who comes in close contact with someone who already has head lice is at risk. The insects can also be spread by sharing clothing, brushes or towels.

Personal hygiene or cleanliness in the home or school has nothing to do with getting them. In fact, lice seem to prefer clean hair and can live on a person's head for as long as thirty days. Nits are head lice eggs and appear as oval, whitish beads on the hair shaft. They are most commonly found behind the ears and at the back of the neck, but are rarely found on the body, eyelashes or eyebrows.

Scalp irritation or a crawling sensation in your hair may be a sign of an infestation. Adult lice are very small and fast, so you may not see them. Nits are far more visible. To remove the nits, use a metal lice comb your fingernails or tape. Removing nits is essential to controlling an infestation. There are a number of very effective, over the counter treatments. Use the products as directed and do not leave the head lice shampoo or rinse in hair longer than instructed because they can burn the scalp. Continue to remove any nits that remain and repeat the treatment a week later.

Once you have dealt with the lice infestation in your hair, cleaning your house is very simple. Wash all of your sheets, towels and recently worn clothing using hot water and dry them in a very hot dryer to wipe out any surviving lice and nits. A thorough vacuuming will take care of carpet and furniture since lice do not live long without a host. do not forget to also clean the upholstery in your car. After that, educate yourself and your family about how lice prevention and how they are spread. They're the kind of house guests that you never want to come back!

To control the spread of lice, you should advise your child's school of a lice infestation at home. Because infestations are so common among children, it is likely that other kids have been affected. Use this as a chance to teach your child how to stay safe and clean. Prevention is the best way of keeping these nasty pests away from your home.

Page Updated: November 12, 2016
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