If you have children in primary school my guess is at some point you will have come into contact with head lice and lice eggs. Because head lice are so common in children I thought it would be helpful to talk about how to get rid of head lice today. In September I will have 2 girls in primary school and I know there will be regular messages home about reports of head lice and nits going round the class. If you are one of those parents who regularly finds head lice in their child’s hair then these tips are for you.
How to Prevent Head Lice
There are definitely things you can do to help with head lice prevention. These tips will make it a lot harder for head lice to get into your child’s hair in the first place so that they don’t have chance to lay eggs and cause an infestation.
The reason head lice spreads so quickly among young children is because they are always touching heads. When I watched my daughter at sports day the girls are always hugging each other and I lost count of the number of times her head came into contact with someone else’s.
If your child has long hair, tie it back every day they are at school. If your child is anything like mine, they might go to school with plaits in their hair, but by the time they get home it is down. If this happens regularly, talk to your child about why it’s important to keep their hair tied back. If they understand that the head lice crawl from one head to another and this is more likely to happen when their hair is lose, they will hopefully leave their hair in all day.
I would also recommend using a head lice prevention spray on the hair daily. These tend to be tea tree oil based and you can buy them online or in the supermarket. We use the Vosene Head Lice Repellant which is also available on Amazon. You can also make your own natural head lice prevention spray if you prefer.
The other key to preventing head lice is to check the hair regularly for lice and eggs. The sooner you spot head lice in the hair and treat them, the more effective you will be at getting rid of them.
How To Treat Head Lice
One of the symptoms of having head lice is itchy hair, and if your child is scratching a lot it is time to check their hair. If you have found lice or lice eggs in their hair you will need to use some head lice treatment. We have used a variety of head lice products like Full Marks 5 Minute Solution and Hedrin Treat and Go.
If one person in the family has head lice, to make sure you effectively treat them, you need to treat everyone’s head at the same time to get rid of them.
Which ever head lice treatment you use, make sure that you follow the instructions fully otherwise it might not be effective.
Once you have treated everyone’s hair for head lice, use a nit or lice comb to go through the entire head of hair to remove any eggs or lice that might be left. This can take a long time so it’s best to sit young children down on a chair, wrap a towel round their necks and give them something to entertain them as you could be here a while.
Once you have been through the sections of hair with a lice comb, put the towel in the wash and hover the area where the child was sat. Clean your lice comb throughly too.
If you have trouble getting rid of the head lice eggs we have a very effective home remedy that you can use. Mix one part white vinegar with one part water and use it to wet the entire head of hair. Once the entire head is covered in the white vinegar solution leave it in the hair for a few minutes. Then run the nit comb through the hair using the method above.
Once you have combed through the hair you can wash the vinegar out of the hair with your regular shampoo or a head lice prevention shampoo to try and keep them from getting back into the hair.
If you are really struggling to get rid of head lice then you can shave of the head completely. It is a method more easyily used on boys hair than girls hair, but it will get rid of them and it’s also very effective at preventing the head lice coming back.
The important thing to remember about head lice is they are very common and it is not a sign your child has dirty hair. Catching head lice regularly can be very frustrating but if you get into a routine of checking the hair regularly and using the head lice prevention tips I shared at the beginning of this post, you might just win the battle against nits!
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