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4 Reasons Your Head Lice Aren’t Going Away and What to Do About It

Head lice are found worldwide. In the United States, infestation with head lice is most common among pre-school children attending child care, elementary school children, and the household members of infested children. An estimated 6 million to 12 million infestations occur each year in the United States among children 3 to 11 years of age.

After trying everything to get rid of head lice on their own, many clients ask us “Why their head lice are not going away?”

We have compiled top 4 reasons why your head lice won’t go away.

  1. You Are Using Over The Counter Lice Medication – Repeated applications of over-the-counter (OTC) products frequently fail to eliminate resistant lice (while unnecessarily increasing the child’s exposure to potentially harmful chemicals).

    How do I know it’s really lice?

    When OTC lice products seem to be ineffective, the diagnosis of pediculosis capitis needs to be confirmed. Although diagnosing head lice is not typically difficult, a thorough head inspection, especially in a child who has thick, tangled hair may take several minutes to perform properly. Parents often mistake dandruff or hair casts for nits. The resistance of head lice to the most popular drugstore products is well-researched and well-documented. The most recent report, issued in 2016, found that most lice in 48 states are now resistant to pyrethroids. These pesticide-resistant lice are called Super Lice.

    According to Journal of Medical Entomology

    Pediculosis is increasing due, in part, to the selection of lice resistant to either the pyrethrins or pyrethroidlice resistant to either the pyrethrins or pyrethroid insecticides by the knockdown resistance mechanism. (Source: Journal of Medical Entomology)

  2. You Are Using a Cheap Lice Comb – Your nitpicking is not thorough enough. The most effective way to get rid of head lice has traditionally been nitpicking. This is the process of combing out live lice and lice eggs (nits). They are tiny and are attached with the insect equivalent of superglue to hair shafts. Usually OTC products come with a cheap lice comb that fails to grab all the nits. The problem is, if you miss even 1 tiny nit, they will hatch, then live lice will multiply and start the lice life cycle once again.
  3. You Are Using Home Lice Remedies – Home remedies are typically ineffective at best and dangerous at worst. You can search the Internet for home remedies for lice and find many that swear by home treatments like mayonnaise, petroleum jelly, olive oil, vodka, and even kerosene. The methods vary, but in general, this involves covering a child’s head with one of these substances overnight, which also means covering their head with some kind of plastic wrap which can become a safety hazard. Substances like kerosene are highly flammable and extremely toxic and should be avoided at all costs.
  4. You Are Not Checking Every Member of The Household – A lot of parents assume that the child found to have lice at school or daycare is the only one with lice. That’s usually not the case. Head lice are spread by direct head-to-head contact, it’s common for the entire family to contract head lice, including parents! If only one person in the family is checked and treated, the lice will likely come back to that person from another family member and the re-infestation process will begin all over.

Life Cycle of Head Lice

How to Get Rid of Lice Permanently

Now you know what NOT to do. One of these might be the reason that you can’t get rid of those pesty head lice. There is one guaranteed way to rid anyone of head lice and it’s shaving the head of the person with lice. No hair, no lice! But that’s not going to go over well with most kids or adults. If that is not an option for you or your child, give Lice Free Noggins a call. Our lice specialists will evaluate your situation and advise you on best course of action for your lice situation. Non-chemical products and treatments that physically kill bugs and eggs, instead of attacking them with chemicals, will successfully eradicate a case of head lice. Lice Free Noggins uses a non-toxic solution that suffocates and kills live bugs, then every single bug and nit is meticulously combed out.

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