My child has head lice. How should I treat it?
Lice infestation is suspected in a child who has excessive itching
on the scalp. Presence of nits (eggs) and lice in the hair confirms
of head lice includes not only treatment of the infested person
but also treatment of infested family members and by cleaning
of infested person
: - Apply lice medication called
pediculicide according to instructions on the bottle. Before applying
on the hair, remove all the clothing. (Remember not to use a shampoo
before using lice medicine and also do not wash the hair for 1-2
days after treatment). After 8-10 hours after treatment, comb
the remaining dead and live lice out of the hair. Nits are often
removed with a special nit comb. The hair and the comb should
be checked every 2-3 days for 2-3 weeks till you are sure that
all lice and nits have disappeared.
lice medications like pyrethrins, permethrin and lindane may require
retreatment after 7-10 days.
of house :-
not use more medications than what is necessary as these drugs
may be dangerous when overused.
not treat with the same medication more than 3 times if it does
not work. See your doctor for alternative medicine.
not mix the various lice medications.
To kill all nits and lice, wash all
washable clothes & bed linen that the infested person touched
during the 2 days before treatment with hot water. Dry-clean the
other clothes. Stuffed animals, comforters etc. that can
not be washed or dry-cleaned have to be sealed in a plastic bag
for 2 weeks.
and brushes are washed with soap and hot water. The house is swept
& dusted properly.
How do I prevent my child from getting lice infestation again?
Lice usually occur in children during school and play activities.
Head tohead contact is the most common mode of transmission. By
avoiding head- to-head contact, not sharing infested combs, brushes,
towels, hats etc can minimize the contact.
Is it necessary to treat everyone in the house if my child has
Although everyone has risk of lice infestation, treatment
to all is not necessary. Check household people for lice and nits
every 2-3 days and treat only if crawling lice or nits are found
within 1cm of scalp.
Can lice infestation occur in younger children ?
Lice infestation can occur even in children less than 2
years. Instead of using over the counter medicines, remove the
nits and lice manually by hand. If this does not work, consult
your doctor for further treatment.
Which are the medications used to treat lice infestation?
Products containing pyrethrins, permethrin, Malathion and lindane
are commonly used to treat lice infestation. They are available
either as shampoo or as oil based solution. Lindane should be used with caution in children weighing less than 110 pounds.
Last created on 15-08-2006
Last updated on 18-11-2006