Who hasn’t heard the recent panic sweeping across the United States about new super lice that are resistant to lice shampoos and much more difficult to get rid of? In fact, these super lice have been reportedly found in 48 states throughout the country. They have indeed developed over the past thirty years an immunity to the main ingredient in lice treatments you buy at the store. Permethrin, a synthetic chemical related to pyrethrin, that once proved effective in killing lice has been virtually rendered useless against these super lice that are popping up on heads across the map.
Should parents be alarmed? What is our best defense? Arm yourself with knowledge. A parent who knows how to react will have an edge on head lice or super lice for that matter. Supermoms (and dads) everywhere can take action and eliminate or prevent super lice from becoming pests in their home.
How to Guard My Family Against Super Lice
- Head Checks At Home. Regularly checking your children’s scalp for signs of a lice outbreak is an important part of keeping lice at bay. Get yourself a nit comb, separate portions of your child’s hair and begin to comb through thoroughly. After combing through each portion have a bowl of water or a paper cloth readily available to clean off the nit comb. Look for signs of small, brown insects the size of a sesame seed. This would be a live louse. Eggs, or nits, are the size of the head of a needle, yellowish in color and oval in shape. They can be difficult to diagnose and are laid very close to the scalp. If you are unsure what to look for, Lice Clinics of Texas offer head checks for anyone in your family. We can help you diagnose the problem and suggest the best steps for you moving forward.
- Trust Modern Methods. When the permethrin-based shampoos hit the market to consumers during the 1990s they were effective. However, now we know that super lice are showing strong immunities to these products. Parents who do choose to try at home methods often spend weeks with a problem, causing it to spread to other household members, costing more money and stress in the long run. Not to mention the harsh chemicals used are a risk to young, developing children. Why would you continue to use products that do not work when a solution that is safe and convenient is readily available?
- Talk to Your Kids About Prevention. Parents who know how difficult it is to remove lice from a home know that prevention is easier than elimination. Keep the conversation of head lice active in your home. Teach children to avoid sharing headgear, helmets, hoodies, hats, hair brushes, hair accessories, pillows, or anything else that could transfer lice to them. Remind those with handheld devices to avoid sitting for long periods of time with head to head contact looking at their small screen. A few conversations with your child might save you a world of trouble in the long run.
- Spread the Word. Don’t keep these tips to yourself! Share these prevention tools with friends, neighbors, co-workers or anyone who you feel would benefit. Preventing head lice in your family could start by helping those around you stay lice free as well.