Head Lice Treatment - How To Treat Head Lice - 14 Part Series
When you suspect your child has lice you want accurate head lice treatment information. This is a 14 part series on how to treat head lice based on my experiences when my child had them, and how I got rid of them.
I know the topic of head lice is pretty gross, and I seriously considered not writing about this because I don't want to drive people away from the site.
However, when this happened to my family recently, which I will call the "lice incident," I really wanted to learn how to kill all those little bugs as quickly, easily, and most importantly as safely as possible.
Basically, this is a series I wish I had been able to find on the Internet when this happened to my family, and I could not, at least not all in one place. Therefore, this series is intended to be a resource for your family if this happens to you.
But No One In My Family Will Ever Need A Head Lice Treatment . . . Will They?
There are some common misconceptions about head lice, such as that only dirty or poor people have them. Basically, it is assumed that if you live a good middle class or better life you won't get lice.
That is simply not true.
Head lice is a growing epidemic in this country, especially amongst children between the ages of approximately 5-12 (in other words, elementary and middle school children). The other growing demographic is ages 24-36 year olds, who are generally the parents or caregivers of these 5-12 year old children. In addition to parents, any siblings living in the home are also at risk of getting lice too.
Head lice can effect all socioeconomic groups, and does not discriminate between the rich and poor. Basically, if you have hair you can get head lice. Although, girls tend to have more problems with lice than boys, typically because girls have longer hair than boys.
There are estimated to be between 6-12 million cases of head lice in the United States each year, and that 8% of school children populations have head lice infestations.*
Therefore, if you have a school age child, or come into contact with one, you and your family members are at risk of getting head lice. That makes this is a concern for just about everyone.
What If I Think My Child Has Head Lice - What Kind Of Head Lice Treatment Should I Buy Right Now?
As soon as we suspected that my child, a daughter with long hair, had head lice, at 11:00 at night, we rushed right out and bought lots of commercially available head lice treatment products, including lice shampoo and sprays with pesticides in them and used them without question.
By the way those products are very, very expensive.
We were up until 5 a.m. applying product, combing her hair, frantically washing bed linens, and over all just panicking. It was perhaps the most exhausting night of my life, aside from the nights I actually gave birth to each of my babies.
Here is what I later learned -- I was basically putting poison on my child's head, on purpose, and to top it all off it didn't even work! I risked my child's health and wasted a bunch of money for no reason, to be stuck where we started.
Head Lice Are Making A Comeback Partially Due To Pesticide Resistance
It is clear from both statistical and anecdotal evidence that head lice prevalence is increasing in this country, and around the world, both in developing countries and developed ones.
I am sure there are many reasons for this, but frankly when you think your child has head lice all the reasons just don't matter. You just want to get rid of them with any type of head lice treatment that has promised to work.
However, the knee jerk response to go out and buy chemicals, which is exactly what we did, has caused a problem -- pesticide resistance.
Those nasty cooties have begun to develop resistance to the chemicals in those commercial head lice treatment products which are designed to kill them, similar to how we are seeing an increase in antibiotic resistance among many types of bacteria.
Apparently my daughter had "super-lice," kind of like the superbugs that are resistant to antibiotics, like MRSA, that are the scourge of hospitals and nursing homes everywhere.
I can't speak for everyone, so those shampoos and sprays may work for some people in some circumstances. But I know they didn't work for us.
So What Do I Need To Do? What Head Lice Treatment Will Really Work?
I am speaking to you now as a seasoned lice killing, nit picking warrior. How am I an expert? Once you go through this trauma of head lice you too will be a warrior and expert on the subject, and will have earned a new parent badge of honor.
In addition, I have a Bachelor of Science in Biology, so I do understand the basic science behind what I'm talking about, from my schooling.
Like I said, I started this process all wrong. I went with a knee jerk response and grabbed the first head lice treatment that came along.
Thinking your child may have head lice will send a chill up your spine, but you need to sit back a minute and not panic. Definitely don't yell at your child or blame them for this problem. They will just feel bad, and you will be blaming them wrongly anyway.
Sit back and read this series, in order, since I have started at the beginning and will tell you everything you need to know, in a logical sequence, all the way until the end when you will conquer your lice infestation safely and effectively, assuming you are constantly vigilant!
Right now each topic is laid out, to give you a preview of the topics ahead, and I will come back and add the link to the page as it is published on the site over the next couple of weeks.
Head Lice Treatment Series - Read This Series In Order
Part 1: Head Lice Treatment - How To Treat Head Lice - Introduction (you are here)
Part 2: Your Lice Treatment Stories - Tell Me About Your Experience And Get Resources From Around The Web, including . . .
Part 5: What Does Lice Look Like? - Head Lice Pictures So You Can Know What You Are Even Looking For
Part 9: How To Treat Head Lice - The Equipment Needed
Part 10: Lice Spray - Does It Work? What Are The Alternatives?
Part 11: Head Lice Shampoo - It Didn't Work For Me. What Are The Alternatives?
Part 12: Lice Comb - An Essential Piece Of Equipment In Your Fight Against Lice And Their Nits
Part 13: Remove Lice From Hair And Your Home - How To Do It
Part 14: Preventing Head Lice - Tips, Tricks And Realistic Advice
* Source: Human Lice: Their Prevalence, Control And Resistance To Insecticides: A Review 1985-1997 (opens a PDF)
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