Treatment

In order to get rid of head lice, all nits must be removed. Since no lice pesticide kills all nits, remaining nits left on the hair must be removed to eliminate the need for more treatments. Nits can be removed with a special nit removal comb, with baby safety scissors, or with the fingernails.

Drug treatment Lotions containing malathion or carbaryl kill lice quickly; the lotion should be washed off 12 hours after application, followed by combing the hair with a fine-toothed comb to remove dead lice and nits. Shampoos containing malathion or carbaryl are also effective if used repeatedly over several days. Combs and brushes should be plunged into very hot water to kill any attached eggs.

The National Pediculosis Association discouraged the use of lindane products (such as Kwell) because they appear to be potentially more toxic and no more effective than other treatments. Still, no product kills 100 percent of nits. Lice medications are not intended to be used on a routine or preventive basis.

All lice-killing medications are really pesticides and therefore should be used with caution. A health-care expert should be consulted before using or applying pesticides when the child has lice or nits in the eyebrows or eyelashes or has other health problems (such as allergies). Because head lice pesticides can be absorbed into the blood, they should not be used on open wounds on the scalp. These medications should not be used at all on infants and should be used with caution on children under age two. Instead, lice and nits can be removed by hand on very young children while wearing gloves.

The product should be used over a sink (not applied in a tub or shower) to minimize pesticide exposure to the rest of the body. The child's eyes should be kept covered while administering the pesticide.

Environmental treatments Bedding and recently worn clothing also should be washed in hot water and dried in a hot drier. Combs and brushes should be cleaned and then soaked in hot water for 10 minutes. Vacuuming is the best way to remove lice and attached nits from furniture, mattresses, rugs, stuffed toys, and car seats. According to the National Pediculosis Association, lice sprays should not be used.

The Best Home Remedies For Head Lice

The Best Home Remedies For Head Lice

Discover The Best All Natural, Inexpensive Home Remedies For Treating and Preventing Head Lice No Matter How Severe The Case.

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