How to Detect Head Lice, Treat It, and Then Clean Your Home Afterwards…

If you have ever gotten a call from school that a child in your child’s class has head lice we all know the anxiety that news causes. Do not worry lice happen in 6 million to 12 million school kids every year. Many areas of the U.S. have lice that resist permethrin-based treatments, so you need to be aware of the best choices to get rid of lice. Do not worry if you or your child has lice, your pediatrician can help you through the best methods for getting rid of pesky head lice. You want a treatment that works — fast.

How to Find Head Lice

If You Notice the Head Lice

There is no way around it, you have to treat the lice. They do not go away on their own. Be sure and check all members of your family to make sure they do not have lice also. Lice travel quickly. Seeing them crawling in your family’s head will make you shiver and want to shout but it is important to find treatment quickly.

You Can Treat Head Lice

You can treat them yourself in your own home. There is a variety of over-the-counter shampoos and rinses that can kill lice and their eggs. Your pediatrician can give you suggestions about the best products to use and if you should reapply a second time.

What To Do If You Are Still Seeing Lice

Your pediatrician may prescribe a stronger treatment option such as pesticides and insecticides that contain benzyl alcohol or ivermectin lotion which is used to treat head lice in adults and children 6 months of age and older. Ivermectin is in a class of medications called anthelmintics. It is important that you read and follow all the instructions. Some products will require more than one application while others will only require one. When in doubt call your pediatrician.

Treating Your Home After Lice

The good news is that lice need blood to survive so they won’t live very long if they do not have a human host. Try these tips to treat lice in your house…

  • Use Heat – Wash any items used or worn by the person in hot water, and dry them on high heat
  • Bag Items in Plastic – If you can’t toss the items into the washer and dryer, seal them in a plastic bag for 2 weeks.
  • Vacuum – Vacuum your entire home
  • Clean Hair Tools – Brushes, combs, accessories, and anything you keep close to them.
  • Insecticides – Don’t use insecticide fogs or sprays

Unfortunately, there is no proven head lice deterrent that will prevent your child from getting head lice again. The best you can do is stay alert for suspicious head-scratching. Catching this behavior early and treating it will help you stop a head lice problem at its roots.

Contact Us (859-525-8181) if you have any questions!

Pediatrics of About Pediatrics of Florence

We believe that children are more than just “little adults.” They have unique personalities, challenges, and life circumstances and we have made every effort to make our offices and care as “kid friendly” as possible. We have an aquatic theme in the waiting rooms (separated for sick and well children) as well as themed examination rooms. All of our physicians are Board Certified Pediatricians and members of the American Academy of Pediatrics and our nurse practitioners are all licensed Pediatric Nurse Practitioners and are available to see both well and sick children.
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