Back to school can sometimes mean back to unpleasant visitors such as head lice. Head lice is common, however it can be an embarrassing and uncomfortable experience for children so it is good to be prepared. Let's look at what exactly head lice is, how to prevent it and how to treat it.
Head lice are small parasites that feed on blood from the scalp. They have six legs and can be around the size of a sesame seed. Nits are empty egg cases that head lice hatch from. These are very small and can be difficult to see in the hair. Both are found on the scalp and like to hide in certain areas to hatch their eggs like behind the ears and braids.
You can have head lice at any age but it is common among children of school age and children with long hair. This is due to the likelihood of head-to-head contact while playing together and having sleepovers for example. Head lice cannot jump or fly to another person.
If you are concerned about you or your child having head lice, the only true way to find out is to look at the scalp and look for a living louse. This can be done using a fine tooth comb.
At Phelans Pharmacy we have a wide selection of head lice treatments from shampoo, mousse, spray and lotion options. Treatments like these are great to kill head lice, nits or both. Make sure that you read all instructions thoroughly before using as each product will be different.
Pick a product that comes with a fine-tooth comb or buy one separately to remove the dead nits from the hair after treatment. Continue to check hair regularly after treatment to ensure that the head lice have not come back or a new infestation has not occurred.