What Are Head Lice?
Head lice are tiny, wingless parasitic insects that live on human hair and feed on small amounts of blood drawn from the scalp.
- Nits (the eggs of the head louse) are small yellowish-white, oval shaped eggs that are “glued” at an angle near the base of a hair shaft.
- Nits must be laid by live lice. You cannot “catch nits.”
- It takes 7-10 days for a nit to hatch and another 7-10 days for the female to begin laying her own eggs.
- Head lice live for about 30 days on the host and a female louse may lay up to 100 nits.
Having head lice is very common, especially amongst children ages three to 12 years of age, and although they are an annoyance for parents, they are not dangerous and do not spread diseases. However, head lice are very contagious and can spread easily.
How Can I Tell If My Child Has Head Lice?
The first indication of head lice is usually itching and scratching. The lice bites may cause your child to scratch constantly and may even lead to skin irritation and infection – although a lack of itching does not necessarily mean that there is no infestation. So to be sure, the lice need to be identified.
Detecting head lice is easy. A close examination of the hair and scalp will reveal white or grayish crawling forms, about the size of a sesame seed, with six legs (lice) and yellowish white eggs (nits) attached to hair shafts close to the scalp. The eggs are sometimes mistaken for dandruff or shampoo residue that will not wash off. However, unlike dandruff, which moves when touched, nits and lice will stick to hair. You may also see red bite or scratch marks on the back of the neck.
How Can I Treat Head Lice After It Is Detected?
There are many treatment options; however, it is important to know that the current leading lice treatments contain toxic chemicals that can be potentially deadly.
Wild Child created Quit Nits, a non-toxic, natural head lice treatment from the Australian bush which is safe and effective. During an in vitro trial, Quit Nits products were found to be more effective than most other treatments.
Quit Nits products include the Quit Nits Complete Lice Kit and the Everyday Preventative Spray which are made from natural actives. Now, not only will parents be able to treat and eradicate lice and their eggs upon infestation, but they will also be able to proactively prevent them by using the preventative spray, for complete peace of mind. Quits Nits products are so safe that they can also be used by pregnant and nursing mothers.* In addition, Quit Nits products require no combing of the hair, greatly reducing the time it takes to remove nits.
Harris, Maxine Report of Tests to Establish the Efficacy of one Formulation (Wild Child) Against Adult Lice and Their Eggs With A 2 hour And Overnight Exposure 2004 Dec.
*People with a history of allergy to essential oils should consult a physician prior to use.
To prevent the spread of head lice, you should ask your child to not share combs, brushes, hair accessories or try on hats that belong to other children. And, if your child will be sleeping away from home, be sure to pack his or her own pillows and towels.
In addition, Quit Nits Preventative Spray, the first of its kind, is a spray that prevents head lice infestations by creating an unfriendly environment for head lice, greatly reducing the chances of infestation.
What Can I Do To Prevent Re-infestation?
It is important that all family members are checked for the presence of live lice and, if infested, are treated at the same time. If your child is at school, it would also be helpful to coordinate your child’s school class so that all infested children are treated on the same evening.
Also, for maximum peace of mind, Quit Nits Preventative Spray, the first of its kind, is a product that prevents infestations by creating an unfriendly environment for head lice, greatly reducing the chances of infestation and re-infestation.