OMG - Head lice

@toosh21 (800)
Australia
May 7, 2008 5:56pm CST
Yesterday morning I was getting my kids ready so we could go to playgroup. Usually I have a friends son on Wednesdays too but he was home sick. My youngest son (15 months) was standing on the stool in the bathroom brushing his teeth so I sprayed his hair with water & was about to brush it when I found a nit! OMG was I shocked! I ran out & grabbed my older son (he will be 3 in July) and he had them all over! I had checked his hair a few times in the days before as I had noticed him scratching but for the little time he would sit still I could see nothing - and he did have them obviously! Luckily I worked in pharmacy for 5 years up until I had our first son & had a tube of head lice treatment in the cupboard (I was paranoid when people cam in to buy the treatments that I might get them so I always kept some at home). I spent 3 hours treating my 2 sons & myself. I think we must have got it from my friends son - he is 4 and goes to kindergarden & comes here 2 days a week. I rang my friend straight away & she said she hadn't noticed her son scratching his head & had never seen them before but would check his head & treat them all anyway. I am so unhappy that it happened to my boys so young, I know it is bound to happen when they start school etc, but they are both under 3 years old! I have had to wash everything off the beds, their little couches, clothes etc & still have a huge pile in the laundry as there is no sun here at this time of year to hang them out in & I have to dry them in the house slowly. My husband has short hair & shaves his head but he hadn't shaved it for weeks so when he got home he shaved it off. I have to go and get some more treatment today and will get a Robicomb too I think as it will be handy in the future if they get them again. I just want to keep cleaning our hair - I know it's not a dirty thing as they like clean hair, but it's just a feeling I get. My poor little boy's hair is so fine that the lice comb did nothing much & I had to pull most out with my fingernails - they were very good and didn't give me much trouble while I did it though bless them. Do you have any tips on making sure they lice are all gone? Any tips on cleaning all the bedding & furniture? I know from now on everyday I will be spraying water with Lavender and Tea Tree oil in it into our hair as a deterrent as I know that works & I really should have thought to do it before now.
8 responses
• United States
7 May 08
My niece got them once, and I'm not sure if she brought them with her or she happened to get them while staying with us [No one staying in the house aside from her got them, so I'm not really sure one way or the other.] We tried every treatment possible, combed through, picked them out individually. The poor thing had them for a few weeks, despite treatment. Eventually I ended up shaving the underside of her hair, where they seemed to be hiding the most. Thankfully the longer parts of her hair that they seemed to be leaving alone [for whatever reason, it was the strangest thing] seemed to cover the buzzed bits. She didn't mind, it was summer and longish hair was too hot, but that was the final step to getting rid of them. They vanished after that. Best of luck with your guys, I don't have any suggestions on getting rid of them, I just wish you the best of luck... and I don't know about everyone else, but I started scratching my head after reading this topic. :P
1 person likes this
@toosh21 (800)
• Australia
7 May 08
Thankyou for your response. I know they can be stubborn little buggers! I am hoping I don't have to shave our heads like hubby does, haha! I will just go through the hair everyday until I know they are gone.
1 person likes this
@phoenix25 (1542)
• United States
8 May 08
Some people don't get them. I haven't gotten them since I was a child when I had thinner, finer hair. Apparently, lice don't like course, thick hair. My sister had fine, thin hair and got it once in high school. My parents made me wash my hair with those nasty chemicals anyway even though there wasn't a nit on my head.
1 person likes this
• Australia
8 May 08
Don't freak out over a few head lice. I have five children and have put up with the lice problem on and off for years. I now refuse to buy any solutions from the chemist and have found two really good products that work but might sound weird. Firstly, use Fido dog wash to wash your hair in. Sounds strange but it works and leave your fair soft and with no horrible smell. Secondly, you don't have to wash everything, keep a spray bottle of Isocol on hand and spray bedding and furniture with that. My two young boys use a nit comb to do their hair every morning and that way they are checking constantly to make sure they have nothing. There is not much you can do to stop them but you can learn to live around it.
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@toosh21 (800)
• Australia
8 May 08
Thanks for your response - I have dealt with head lice a lot through my work at the pharmacy before I had the children, but I never expected them to get it so young! We have been using natural remedies that I am making myself now & spraying furniture & bedding (and car seats) with a natural solution I have made too. I will now also be spraying our hair with water containing Tea Tree, Eucalyptus and Lavender oils everyday to deter them - it really works & I should have been doing it all along!
@eden32 (3976)
• United States
7 May 08
I know it freaks out every good parent, but it's really not a sign of being dirty or neglect. If your kids play with other kids, go to school or really just leave the house, odds are they're going to be exposed to them at least once. My poor daughter & all of her long haired friends passed them back & forth for nearly a month before all the parents were able to eradicate them- and trust me we were all working hard to try to get rid of them. Here's what I learned when we went through it... You really don't have to treat bedding or furniture with any chemicals. Washing your bedding & vacuuming is more than enough, and even that isn't truly needed. Lice can't live without a host for long.And head lice only feeds on humans- your pets can't carry them. The chemicals for treating the hair are harsh & potentially dangerous (imo). I tried a couple, and got really concerned when the lice weren't dying but my daughter was being exposed to these chemicals over & over again. What worked was getting a good lice comb & some almond oil (I suppose any food grade oil would work- but almond doesn't leave the hair too disgusting & washes out easily). I would section off her hair, clipping chunks out of the way- and one section at a time go through with the comb. I would dunk the comb in boiling hot water in between each pass. I had a super bright light (she has blond hair, I was nearly blind by the time we were done!) and I would look for nits that the comb missed as we went- those ones would get a drop of oil & then pulled off with my nails. Do this every day until you don't find any nits or lice for at least three days.
@toosh21 (800)
• Australia
7 May 08
Thanks for your response. I know it's not about being dirty or neglect - I know lice only like clean hair. I haven't used chemicals either - I used a natural lice treatment as we don't use any chemicals for anything. I haven't treated bedding or anything with chemicals either - just normal washing powder & vinegar & fresh air. I used the boiling water for the comb too & we will be doing it daily until they are gone. Thanks you have reassured me I am doing it right!
1 person likes this
@phoenix25 (1542)
• United States
8 May 08
If you don't like to use chemicals, there are a lot of natural remedies out there. Some people on this website say that some of them really work: http://www.earthclinic.com/CURES/lice.html#APPLECIDERVINEGAR They suggest mayonnaise with an apple cider vinegar rinse, olive oil, and even coconut oil. Some of them say it works. I don't know. I don't know what I'm going to do when my son gets lice one day.
@toosh21 (800)
• Australia
8 May 08
Thankyou for the link - I will be trying some more of their ideas - I used the vinegar rinse last night & it really did loosed the eggs off! And I am now making my own remedy & using it everyday until I know they are gone.
@violeta_va (4834)
• Australia
8 May 08
My son was 8 months old when he got some. we went to a store and we saw this cute fireman toy hat and put it on him. few days later he had a whole vilage head lice I was able to remove them without any chemicals. Dont blame your friend over it you dont know 100% and even if it was her son its not like they did it on purpose. Some kids just get them others dont. Me and my sister slept in the same bed and I would have them she wont. Same as my nephews now the little one will have them the big one wont. When you wash your things use hot water and when you find one make sure you kill it (by presing it in between your nails or in the bath tub by presing it on the surface with your nail)
@toosh21 (800)
• Australia
9 May 08
I am not blaming my friend over it - she says her son doesn't have any, although I will check him when he comes on Monday just in case as we don't want to get re-infested. I haven't used any chemicals - only natural remedies & I always kill any I find but I think we've got them all now. Thanks!
• Australia
9 May 08
The last time I had them was when I was pregnant with my son and with a very long hair it was pain in the behind to get rid of them. I faund using head and sholders shampoo to be very efective as I didnt want to use chemicals but non of the natural things worked and I didnt want to shave my hair lol. I know the shampoo is stil a chemical but at least it wasnt marked with poison.
@roniroxas (10574)
• Philippines
7 May 08
i started a discussion about this. i found out this site but it was too late already for me because my children are all teens already and we are over with the lice attack lol. http://www.mylot.com/w/discussions/1392731.aspx this is my discussion and in there is a link of a site that can teach you how to get rid of the lice egg and all. i hope that link will help you.
@toosh21 (800)
• Australia
7 May 08
Thankyou so much - that site is fantastic & just reassures me that I was doing the right things. Luckily with my work in pharmacy I became qualified in natural medicine & aromatherapy & have been using this. I use a spray with the natural oils in it & also vinegar to clean the bedding etc. Thanks again!
@roniroxas (10574)
• Philippines
8 May 08
its really hard if one catches because it will spread out with all of the members of the family. even we are clean or we send our kids to school clean, lice just keep growing. well its because younger children loves to play under the sun. i am glad that i can help
@thedaddym (1736)
• United States
8 May 08
I have heard that Olive oil is really good at getting rid of them, it apparently smothers them. So far we have avoided this happening. Thank goodness. Sorry this happened to you guys. I hope you all get rid of them quickly.
@toosh21 (800)
• Australia
9 May 08
Now I should know that olive oil would help - olive oil is good for everything! Thanks!
@amerexp (25)
• United States
8 May 08
I always found that using a nit comb with tea tree conditioner in your kids hair was an effective way to deter them and made it a lot easier to comb the nits out. While you are spraying bedding and furniture and all that, don't forget to spray the kids' car seats!
@toosh21 (800)
• Australia
9 May 08
Yep that's what I have done - thanks for confirming it for me!
@gemini_rose (16192)
8 May 08
Head lice are only a reoccuring nuisance if other parents do not keep a check on their children, some people do not notice them for a while and some people do not bother doing anything even when they do spot them. If it was me I would get your friend to mention it at the kindergarten, as they might not know. I went on holiday last year and I always check my kids for nits every week without fail, 3 days after being on holiday my kids had nits, all 4 of them, they had come from the bedding where we were staying. I was furious. It is not the nits you have to watch for but the eggs, once the nits are off the hair they have no survival as they feed on you, so it is just the eggs. Simple hot washes should be enough for any bedding. Not sure about furniture though.
@toosh21 (800)
• Australia
9 May 08
My friend says her son doesn't have any - but I will be checking him when he comes on Monday because I've worked too hard to get rid of them to have us get them again! I have washed all the bedding in hot water with vinegar and sprayed everything with Eucalyptus, Lavender & Tea Tree oils so hopefully we will be completely rid of them now!