Lice: the 10 most frequent doubts to eliminate them
At the beginning and at the end of each school year, parents and students join in the battle against lice. The reason is that these parasites reproduce better under cover of the warm temperatures characteristic of autumn and spring, and take advantage of the crowded spaces like the classrooms of the school to spread out. However, with a nurse, a good pediculicide, a Lice repellent and a good dose of patience we can eliminate them once and for all.
The presence of lice begins to be suspected by itching on the scalp or when it is known of recent cases of lice in the family or school environment. It is convenient to examine the hair of the person infested with a nurse, to drag the lice tuft to strand.
Pediculicide to eliminate and repellent to prevent
Once confirmed the presence of louses, you must apply the pediculicide, massaging the scalp and hair to ensure that the product reaches all the hair. Next, you have to wash the hair with a pediculicidal shampoo, which leaves the hair soft to finish combing the hair with a nurse, which serves to remove dead lice and nits. It is very important to repeat the same operation a week later to make sure that all the lice have been eliminated.
This treatment should only be used when we have detected the presence of live lice, never as a prevention.
10 parents' frequent doubts about lice
1. Can a lice infestation be prevented? Yes, constantly watching the children's heads. Above all, it is advisable to check the hair with the nurse when you know of an outbreak of lice at school. If we confirm that our child does not have lice and we know that there are some lice in their environment, we will use lice repellents sold in pharmacies. A pediculicide should not be used if it is not confirmed that there are lice because resistance can be generated.
2. If one child has lice and the other does not, what precautions should I take to avoid contagion? First, avoid contact between the heads of children and that they share objects that have contact with the hair. Then, inspect clothes, towels, hats, etc., that they may have shared. Whenever possible, wash the clothes of the infested child at a temperature higher than sixty degrees. Also, put the toys and stuffed animals of the affected child in an airtight bag for three days, because as the lice are fed every 4-6 hours of the host's blood, they can not live so long isolated and will die. The combs, hairpins and brushes, immerse them in boiling water and vacuum the entire house.
3. Is it possible to get infected in the pools? When the lice are in the water, whether in the sea, in the pool or in the shower, they enter a state of suspended animation, but they remain attached to the hair. Therefore, it is unlikely that lice will be transmitted in the water, but we can get infected by sharing towels or storing personal items and clothing near infected objects. Thus, children should be taught not to share these types of items, both in the pool and in the changing rooms.
4. Can pets transmit lice? No, lice can only live in people's heads. They are human parasites.
5. Are lice more common in boys or girls? Head lice are usually transmitted more among girls, not because they have longer hair, but because of the games they usually do, where they are closer and more hugged, and because they share more objects such as hairpins, hairpins, combs, etc. There are also children, regardless of gender, who are more predisposed to suffer from them, due to their blood composition.
6. Why does the itching occur? The discomfort is caused by the saliva generated by the louse when it is bitten on the scalp to feed itself. Scratching the head excessively can irritate the scalp and produce a small bacterial infection that increases the discomfort.
7. What product should I use to treat my child? There are pediculicidal lotions or foams, which should always be applied to dry hair, massaging the area lightly, and according to the instructions of the manufacturer and the pharmacist, who will recommend the most appropriate solution to our case in terms of format and composition. After applying the pediculicide, you have to wash the hair with the usual shampoo and, in later ones, check the head to eliminate, manually or with the nurse, the nits that have been able to survive.
8. When can it be said that an elimination treatment is complete? If when checking the head after seven days from the first application of the treatment there are no lice or nits, we can say that the treatment has been completed. Also, let's not forget to perform this elimination treatment on all those affected at the same time, to avoid reinfestation.This whole process can take between one and three weeks, depending on the product and the consistency in the follow-up.
9. Why do we have to repeat the elimination treatment? Do not repeat it by system, but only if after seven days, live lice or nits remain on the head. With one left, it is enough for more lice to breed.
10. How can you tell if the nits are alive? The lice deposit the nits on the bangs, the base of the hair and behind the ears, because they are the hottest and most appropriate areas for survival. Therefore, the farther away from the base of the hair they are, the longer they will wear on the head and they will have already hatched or they will be dead. However, at first glance it is practically impossible to differentiate them (in fact, it is common to confuse them with dandruff), so all of them must be eliminated
Advice: Eduardo González Zorzano, Cinfa's medical expert