There is a myth that head lice only affects the poor or uneducated. This is far from the truth--these creatures affect everyone regardless of the socioeconomic status of the family. According to the CDC, lice are prevalent among preschool children up to the elementary school levels, and affects up to 12 million American kids annually between the ages of 3 to 11. Found on the scalp, especially near the neck and ears, lice survive by consuming human blood. Listerine and vinegar are effective lice treatments and are widely used.
Head Lice Symptoms
Itch and tickling are common symptoms. The child reacts to the itching by scratching the affected area, which in turn causes sores. If not treated immediately, this can lead to an infection. Therefore, it is important to start treatment at the onset of condition. Insomnia is also prevalent during infestation since lice are more active in the dark.
Transmitted from one child to another through various methods, including embracing and sharing objects. Breeding grounds include places such as classrooms, where children are in close contact with each other for extended periods.
Listerine is a proven method to treat lice. It is effective because it contains alcohol, eucalyptol, thymol, menthol, and methyl salicylate. These ingredients are toxic for the lice, but safe for people. Treat the affected area by washing, followed by toweling and drying the hair. Massage Listerine into the child’s head and hair, avoiding contact with the eyes. This procedure eliminates the bonding agent that lice eggs stick to on the scalp. Once is normally enough, but you can repeat the treatment if you are concerned there might be remaining nits. Children who scratch their scalp prior to treatment might complain of burning, but this symptom is not dangerous. The burning will clear up shortly. It might be a good idea to provide the child with a game or other distraction.
Vinegar is highly effective in treating head lice. Shampoo the child's hair and towel dry as normal. You will then massage equal amounts of water and vinegar gently on the head. This mixture acts as a dissolving agent, eliminating dead lice and removing nits. An added advantage of using this method is that the hair appears thicker and has a shiny gloss.
To make sure the infestation is completely gone, it is advisable to wash all bedding and clothing in hot water, and dry them on the highest temperature setting.