What are head lice (Pediculus Humanus Capitis)?
Head lice are small parasitic insects. Head lice only live on human scalps. They feed on human blood and without it they cant survive. They feed several times during a 24 hour period.
Head lice can only live for 24 hours off the human head away from its meal of human blood!
Lice vocabularyLouse a single adultNits lice eggsLice more than one louse
What do Head Lice look like?Adult Head Lice are 2 3mm in length (about the size of a sesame seed)They are tan or grey-white and have six legs, each with a claw
Where do head lice come from?
Head lice do not come out of the air or from the ground. They are human parasites and have probably been here since the beginning of time. Desiccated (dried up) head lice and their eggs (nits) have been found on the hair and scalps of Egyptian mummies.
How are head lice spread?
Head lice are spread from one person to another by close head-to-head contact.
There is also the possibility of spreading head lice from backs of chairs, sofas, car seats, mattresses, pillows or similar items.
Lice can also be spread through sharing hats, towels, combs, brushes, helmets, hair bows, etc.
Can I catch head lice in a pool?Swimming with someone who has lice carries no greater risk of transmission than any other activity.When lice are in water, they remain firmly locked onto the hair literally hanging on for dear life.This is how they survive regular shampooing and swimming
Can head lice jump or fly?
~Head lice do not have hind legs to hop or jump. ~They also do not have wings and cannot fly.
Important Head Lice Facts:Because Head Lice cannot jump or fly, they crawl from one person to another using their claws to grab onto hair
Head lice are NOT spread from dogs, cats or other pets
Another important Head Lice fact!Personal hygiene and the cleanliness of your home or school DO NOT have anything to do with whether you get lice
Whos most at risk for Head Lice?Kids in daycarePreschool and Elementary school childrenFamily members of children who have liceGirls are more likely than boys to get lice (more likely to share hair items, close head-to-head contact and usually have longer hair)
Lice have a life span of around 30 days
Size of Nit, Nymph and Adult Louse as compared to a penny and match
What are the signs and symptoms of head lice? You may feel:A tickling feeling of something moving in the hair (lice crawling)Itching (caused by an allergic reaction to the bites of lice feeding off the blood in the scalp) much like mosquito bitesSores on the scalp (cause by scratching)
Head lice normally prefer the following areas of the head:
Over the ears and the nape of the neck (the warmest areas of the scalp)
If you think you have head lice:If you are at school, tell your teacherThe School Nurse will check your head for head lice and nitsIf you are at home, tell an adult and notify your school if lice are found
School Nurse checking for Head Lice and Nits1)The School Nurse will look for live head lice and fresh nits to confirm an active infestation.2)If possible, a live louse will be placed on a piece of tape and placed under the microscope as confirmation of head lice for the students parent/guardian.
If I have head lice, what do I do?Dont PanicThe School Nurse will call the parent/guardian to pick student up for Head Lice TreatmentIf parent/guardian has any questions, School Nurse can provide information for Head Lice Treatment
What can be used to treat lice and nits?Wayne County School Health recommends using Olive Oil
1. Apply generous amount of Olive oil to scalp and hair massaging well.2. Cover head with shower cap and leave the oil on at least 8 hrs.3. After 8 hours with the oil still on the head, comb with a regular comb to remove dead lice4. Remove nits from hair (Nit Picking)5. Shampoo hair6. Repeat Oil and Nit Picking treatment every 4 days for 3 weeks.
Why the No Nit Policy?Nits are the eggs of head lice. Nits are oval-shaped eggs that are glued to the hair shaft close to the scalp (within of the scalp). Fresh nits appear dark. You cannot catch nits. Nits must be laid by live lice. Once laid, it takes 7-10 days for a nit to hatch, and another 7-10 days for the female to mature and begin laying her own eggs. Thus the No Nit policy. Any surviving nits will hatch into crawling lice within 7 -10 days, generating a cycle of reinfestation. Removing all nits insures complete treatment!
If any nits are left in the hairDont take the risk!
If olive oil is not used, use a pesticide-free treatmentNon-toxic, safe, odorless and hypoallergenicSimply follow directions in package
Mom treating child
Using Lice Comb to remove lice and nits
Everyone checking for lice/nits!
More important tips to get rid of LiceVacuum all areas where head has rested (backs of chairs, sofas, car seats, mattresses, pillows, carpet, etc)Disinfect hair products such as combs, brushes, and hair accessories by soaking in hot, soapy water for at least 20 minutesPlace stuffed toys in plastic bag and seal for 2 wksWash all bed linens, clothing, hats, caps, jackets and scarves in detergent and hottest water safe for fabricThen..
Dry in dryer on hottest setting for 20 minutes!
Before returning to class:Your school nurse must re-check your head to make sure all lice and nits are goneIf your head has no lice or nits, you may return to class
What can I do to prevent Head Lice?
For students ~ Remember:Never share helmets, hats, brushes, combs (or any hair accessory)If you think you have head lice, tell your teacher or the school nurse If a friend tells you he/she has head lice, tell your teacher or the school nurse
For Parents ~ Remember the best tip for Lice Control!All parents should look through their childs hair regularly for lice and nits
Notify School Nurse if lice or nits are found!
New Product that claims to repel head lice (not a lice treatment) Shampoo, Conditioner and Leave-in Spray
Lice and Nits ~ Go Away!Without you here, its a better day!
How much do you know about lice?Lets take the Head Lice Quiz!http://www.headlice.org/kids/headgames/quiz/quiz1.htm