Head lice or nits are tiny wing-less insects which cannot fly or jump. Therefore, they can only be spread by direct contact (ie having a cuddle with parents or head-to-head contact whilst at school). It is estimated that 10% of school age children are affected by head lice at any one time.
Old Wives Tales dictate that poor hygiene was part of the cause but this has not been found to be the case.
How will I know if my child has Head Lice? Bites from head lice can cause intense itching and irritation on the scalp, but these symptoms may not appear until at least two months after the lice move in. A rash at the nape of the neck may also develop. I suggest a weekly check and if you're lucky, your child's school will contact you if they have a Head Lice outbreak.
Don't forget to contact your childs school or child care provider if you do find evidence of Head Lice and treat the whole family on a 6 day cycle to break the Head Lice's life cycle.
The best way we have found to check for head lice is by purchasing a nit comb and carefully combing though wet hair. If possible, get your child to tip their head over a piece of card or light coloured paper and starting at the base of the neck work your way forwards. Take small sections of hair and placing the comb close to the base of the hair, comb from root to tip. Now check the comb. If you notice any lice, rinse the comb.
You will know from previous blogs that whilst chemical alternatives are usually available, I try to use natural products wherever possible. Therefore, along with the combing method I also use The Aromatherapy Company’s Nit Protect Kit. It is completely natural and organic and does not contain any harmful chemicals, synthetics, Parabens or SLS. The kit contains an organic shampoo, conditioner, preventive aromatic water spray and nit comb!! Priced at just £14.95 it comes in a handy clear plastic wallet and is really portable. If you would like further details, please contact me by writing your comment below.