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Head Lice: The Epidemic Rages

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As school begins, so does this year's epidemic of lice. Find out what to do if your kids have 'em.

Brace yourselves for one of THE most annoying conditions your kid can get at school--lice. In a recent study, reported that between 6 to 12 million kids ages 3 to 11 are infected every year. These are bugs that have grown resistant to most medications and are extremely difficult to get rid of. They spread like wildfire (actually, they spread by crawling ... eeww)--and in many cases, students are forced to stay home from school to prevent further infestations.

How do you fight these annoying beasts? First, check your kids on a regular basis when you notice signs of irritation. Lice are usually found on the scalp, behind the ears and on the nape of the neck. The school nurse should be able to provide guidance to help you find a company that gets rid of them for you, like "Hair Fairies."  It's a full service salon located in several major cities that's dedicated to removing head lice safely, effectively and with all non-toxic products. Over-the-counter creams and shampoos typically don't do the trick--and need to be repeated numerous times. Several additional products are currently awaiting approval by the FDA--but until then, check out Hair Fairies' tips and techniques below--so you can know how to fight these buggers.

To find a location or to buy their products to use at home, check out the Hair Fairies Web site!

39 comments so far | Post a comment now
Health Professional September 10, 2008, 4:48 PM

If your going to a head lice removal place: please consult your physician first or make sure the store is medical staffed or watched over by physicians. Head lice is a medical condition and should be handle by buy medical professionals.

ashley September 11, 2008, 7:22 AM

Just reading this story makes me itch. Last year my son and I had head lice. He got it from his preschool where they would pile all of their coats in a corner. I didn’t know he had it. I just kept itching and itching and finally my husband checked me and sure enough. They loved my long hair. And I have a lot of hair. It took me a month to get them out of my hair. I was so miserable, (plus I was 9 months preggo), I would have to sit in the bathroom for over an hour trying to run that stupid little comb through my tangled hair. I cried alot. I am definately scared anytime I have an itch on my head.

Tracy September 11, 2008, 12:13 PM

Using Products with Tea Tree Oil in them will help keep the Lice away.
Its a pain to have to take care of lice once you have them.
I buy shampoo from the beauty supply stores that have Tea Tree Oil and so far no sign of them.
And we kept getting it all the time before using the Tea Tree Oil Shampoos.

Anonymous September 11, 2008, 2:49 PM

the best way to get thelice away it’s vaceline,put alot on your child head and massage then put a plastic bag over his head and just wait 4 to 5 hours then rinse with lundry soap until the grease is gone rinse and use shampoo and your kid will never get lice again…
thats my grand mother recepie

Kay September 11, 2008, 5:12 PM

I heard LISTERINE can really help get rid of lice and keep them away. It also works to ward off mosquitoes! Just be careful when using it, stay away from any flames or such. The BEST thing for lice though is to get to one of those places that picks each and every lice out with the non-toxic products and special combs and lights. Trust me, it is EXPENSIVE, but, Definitely WORTH it! I spent YEARS literally, with 4 children and myself, having lice on and off and the over-the-counter and prescription products did not work and lice seem immune to them. Only by finally spending a few hundred dollars, about $100 per person, did we finally resolve the problem, once and for all at one of these lice-picking and removal places. God BLESS them! I am so HAPPY we found one in the next county over and that it WORKED!!!

Tom September 11, 2008, 6:31 PM

Attention Parents!!
Did you know that the leading lice shampoo contains
a potent pesticide called LINDANE, which has been
know to cause vomiting, diarrhea, convulsions, liver
damage and many other health issues with our kids.
LINDANE has been banned in 18 countries and
severely restricted in 10 others. Why are we using it
on our kids’ heads? The health of our kids is at stake,
don’t let them be exposed to this sometimes deadly
treatment when there is a natural, safe, non-toxic,
chemical free and effective way to prevent and treat
lice infestations.
Let’s get rid of these pests once and for all in our
community! LET’S DO IT FOR OUR KIDS!!
Don’t get me wrong, The Hair Fairies will remove the lice, but they charge by the hour and stretch the procedure out well beyond the time required — all the while making unfounded claims about their products, which reportedly interfere with the head lice nervous system and reproduction. The products themselves are nothing remarkable and very toxic. They are basic stock formulations private labeled by Trademark Cosmetic Laboratories in Riverside, CA. If you purchase one of these products, be prepared to shell out nearly $20 for a $6 shampoo.
Before wasting your cash at Hair Fairies; google them and that should scare the hell out of you. Also google “head lice Los Angeles” (or any city you live in) and you will find that they are far from the only game in town.
There are many other nit pickers out there. The Hair Fairies are just the most expensive and they tell you that they are the only one doing this service.

Polly September 11, 2008, 6:40 PM

Welcome back to school and Here comes
the Head Lice Again.
Do not let your
preschoolers and your children sleep on
the carpet or share their blanket, or
pillows while napping in school.
Keep safe and check your children’s hair often
when you are combing their hair to go
to school.
Head Lice Spreads so fast in
the schools.
Olive Oil is the cure
It works and it is safe.
I recommend a
video title ” Getting Rid Of Head Lice” that
you can order on line.
I say that the olive oil is your best bet;
because it is safe and you will tackle
the Century Head Lice. Hair Fairies products are toxic.
Many people prefer not to use unknown medicine or products for
Head Lice.
Use Olive Oil, Wash out next day
comb out nets and pinch out nets with fingers.
Keep checking hair each week and again use
Olive Oil in another 2 weeks.
Need to wash and dry all blankets, stuff toys, sheets, hats, pillows.
Do not let children share
combs, brushes, and hats which causes spreading of Lice.

Sandi September 11, 2008, 8:43 PM

Use the Robicomb. I got mine from Walgreen’s. It’s chemical free and only took a few times of coming your hair. It’s a little comb and it zaps them to death. You can actually hear it beep when it finds one. Great entertainment when you are soo frustrated with head lice.

Elizabeth September 12, 2008, 8:16 AM

To pervent getting head lice is the trick. Make sure use use a sented (its nicer to smell) oil on your childrens head. Yes oil, you won’t get head lice if you have a oily scalp. Hair spray also will keep it off, however most kids won’t have hair spray on the their hair. So, Olive Oil on the scalp or a nice sented oil. Keep the scalp oily, it may look dirty (because its oily) but you won’t get lice. A black coworker told me they don’t get lice because of all the oily hair products they use to care for their hair. Its a fact of nature that lice like DRY hair. I also put hair spray on the inside of the coat hoods. My one child with oily hair never got it. My one with very dry hair got it, that was when I found out about the oily V dry hair and skin. Oily scalps are best for when there are conditions for the lice (coat piles, and thoes letters home from school) to take over.

ATC November 19, 2008, 2:28 PM

It’s obvious that white people don’t know squat about black people’s hair (just like every other aspect of the black race, they just make up things and assume). Black people have naturally DRY hair. That’s why black hair grows upward (Afro) if it was weighed down and greasy, it’d grow just like every other race’s hair; afros are light, and DRY. If lice liked dry hair, black people would get them. Whites and others get lice because of the oils their scalps produce daily. We don’t have to wash our hair as nearly as much as whites. I don’t put anything in my hair and I’ve or any black person I know never had lice. I’ve gon months without washing my hair and it stayed dry and clean; on the other hand, whites MUST wash their hair everyday. Blacks wash their less with store-bought oils in it than whites do with natural oils. The reason why black people put store-bought oils in their hair is because it’s again, naturally dry. It’s logical, no other race puts oils in their hair because their scalps produce it daily and it’s easier for the lice eggs to stick to the greasy hair. A black person will get lice if a white person spreads it to them, and it wouldn’t last long because of our flat hair shaft and DRY hair.Even after putting oil in our hair, it stays dry the hair swallows up the oils and it’s dry once again in a in less than 3 days. Stop trying to make yourselves feel better by making up lies to suit your insecurities on why black people don’t get lice and you do. God made us that way, he obviously didn’t want us to have lice. A biracial person may get it because of the white genes in their DNA, but other than that no way. Now that’s TRUE good hair.

TexasCutie December 28, 2008, 9:02 PM

I have had lice for 3 years now. Everyone around me has it as well. It would be pointless to get rid of it now considering I’d just get it again. My whole family has it and no one ever talks about it. It’s unspoken of and it used to give me BAD emotional problems but now I cope with it just fine. I also have body lice as well.

Crystaline December 29, 2008, 6:48 PM

I fail to see where a person has insulted the black population by pointing out, “A black coworker told me they don’t get lice because of all the oily hair products they use to care for their hair.” This person was told, therefore, they are not insulting you or your culture. It isn’t wrong for a person to believe a statement like that when told, so please do grow up.

As for lice, I’ve had it for a few years now myself. I’ve never been able to get rid of it, and when people don’t help you out with the embarrassing problem, I don’t see how it’s possible. I guess I’ll just have to keep fighting the good, long battle.

tina December 31, 2008, 1:14 AM

i have a foster child who has spread lice to my entire family and when i asked her how many times has she had it this year she said this the fourth time it is so bad i hav put several treatments on all of us and i am still finding it. it is awfull and very costly can someone tell me if i us the shampoo on us everyother day to remove it how dangerous is that?

a December 31, 2008, 4:33 PM

My son brought home a head full of lice from a summer camp two years ago. Unfortunately it spread to myself and two other siblings at the same time. I did resort to over the counter lice-killing shampoo - needed twice. In between I spent the next 2 1/2 weeks doing daily rigorous combing on all of us. Used two different Rid combs - one for the adult lice and one for the eggs. I also vacuumed all matresses, couches, rugs, and carpets at least once a day. All furry toys , unneeded clothing, and blankets were bagged and put in the garage for a month.In addition, bedsheets, blankets,and clothing would get washed every two days in hot, hot water and dried for over an hour on the hottest setting. I also kept clean pillows covered in garbage bags under the pillowcase, to minimize having to clean bulky pillows. Needeless to say it was a pain in the rear and very time consuming, but It finally cleared for all of us. Note about oils: I did read that lice prefer hair that is freshly washed/free of oils - because the eggs adhere better to the strands this way. Don’t know if its true - but my husband (who does use olive oil/oil hair products daily on his dry hair) escaped unscathed from the lice assault.

Erin March 5, 2009, 8:26 PM

This is the second winter in a row that my 5 year old daughter has brought home lice from school- the ONLY thing that has worked is a new treatment called Resultz- and trust me I have tried every other method in the book! I also smeared her hair down with tea tree oil and garlic - it doesnt smell great but it prevents re-infestation from occuring- I also wash everything in hot hot water and dry on hot everyday and take all other measures to prevent it from coming back. My daughter has very curly hair and the lice love her. It takes hours and hours to comb through and search for nits and its frustrating that other parents are not taking steps to make sure that thier children do not attend school with lice.

kara November 10, 2009, 8:20 AM

Instead of waiting for your children to get head lice why not prevent it by using preventative products. There are some good ones on the market and we found Lemon Logic- a non-toxic, fresh smelling preventative product line by LiceLogic. My young kids love these and ask to be sprayed every morning with their daily repellant spray. It has been working.
good luck.
-Kara in Dalls

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