While life is rushing by us sometimes the last thing we are thinking about is preventing bad things from happening. We might just be trying to survive today! However, did you know that parents who are informed about head lice and take steps to proactively protect their families are better off than those who do not? Of course, anyone can still bring home a case of head lice. But, parents who know are prepared to handle the situation calmly and effectively. Ultimately, they may even prevent it after all! Take a quick head lice pop quiz to see how prepared you are as a parent against head lice. Have fun, learn some lice facts, and see how you favor against others!
Head Lice Pop Quiz for Parents
Question #1 – Why do head lice need a human host?
- They don’t. Head lice can live on any number of animals, pets or even birds.
- Head lice are exclusively a human parasite that lives off human blood and warmth to survive.
- Head lice eat human hair and can survive without a human host as long as they have a food source, such as a hairbrush.
Question #2 – What time of the year do head lice outbreaks occur?
- Head lice are active all times of the year, with more occurrences seen during spring break, summer breaks and back to school time.
- Head lice are only active during the summer months when it is warmest.
- Head lice are dormant all winter and come out for spring, summer, and fall.
Question #3 – What are super lice?
- Head lice that have developed the ability to fly, making it much easier for them to infect many people.
- Head lice that are able to hold their breath for up to 10 hours. This allows them to be unaffected by shampoos or water.
- Head lice that have build up immunities to the active ingredient in over the counter shampoos.
Question #4 – What should you do to clean your home if someone has head lice?
- Only worry about washing pillows that touch the head. Everything else is unaffected and not a threat.
- Wash all bedding, sheets, towels, and stuffed animals. Deep clean carpets, furniture, and clothing. Place items that can’t be washed in the warm dryer for 20 minutes.
- Take everything out of the child’s bedroom and sanitize it. Throw away bedding and clothing and replace with new.
Question #5 – Who is most likely to contract head lice?
- Children between the ages of 3-11 are the most likely.
- Adults who take the bus and/or fly frequently.
- Elderly people are most likely to contract head lice because they don’t wash their hair very often.
How do you think you did? Here are the answers in case you are unsure:
Answer #1 – Head lice are exclusively a human parasite that lives off of human blood and warmth to survive. Pets play no role in head lice or the transfer of head lice.
Answer #2 – Head lice are active all times of the year, with more occurrences seen during spring break, summer breaks and back to school time. The cold winter months do not kill them.
Answer #3 – Super lice are head lice that have build up immunities to the active ingredients in over the counter shampoos, pyrethrins, and pyrethroids. This is found in common products that have been overused since the 1990s.
Answer #4 – Wash all bedding, sheets, towels, and stuffed animals. Deep clean carpets, furniture, and clothing. Place items that can’t be washed in the warm dryer for 20 minutes.
Answer #5 – The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention tell us that children between the ages of 3-11 are most likely to contract head lice.
Surprised at how little you know about this common, childhood problem? Contact Lice Clinics of Texas today with any questions or concerns you may have about head lice or the treatments we offer.