School aged kids generally pass head lice amongst themselves and once taken hold, they are very difficult to get rid of. Many a parent has been horrorstruck at the sight of these pesky crawlers in their child’s hair, but that need not always be attributed to lack of hygiene. Although hygiene does play a role in lice treatment and eradication, the main reason why lice move so quickly from one head to another is close physical contact between children. The fact that a single female louse can lay hundreds of eggs also contributes to the problem....
Many parents rush to buy chemical based lice shampoos to get rid of these pests, but there are many gentle, yet effective home remedies, that can easily get the job done. Below are some effective home remedies for lice.
You read that right! Listerine (or any mouthwash for that matter) is an effective remedy for head lice. Saturate the hair completely with Listerine mouthwash and allow it to remain in the hair for an hour. After wards, wash off with warm water and mild shampoo. The antibacterial compounds in mouth wash kill adult eggs and larvae and also break the lice life cycle by preventing reproduction. Use this remedy two to three times a week for best results. You can also spray Listerine on the hair after shampooing and drying it.
Vinegar is an age old remedy for head lice and nits, the eggs of lice. Soak the hair and scalp in vinegar and wrap a towel or shower cap around the head. You can use any vinegar--distilled white or apple cider. The acid in vinegar will kill all of the adult lice and eggs. Let the vinegar work on the head for 3 hours or longer if possible. Wash off with a shampoo and warm water. Repeat the procedure several times a week in order to get rid of lice quickly.
Many essential oils have antibacterial, antiviral and anti-parasitic properties. The oil which works best in killing lice is Tea Tree oil. Massage a few drops of tea tree oil into the hair and scalp by diluting it first with a teaspoon of coconut or olive oil. Rub the scalp thoroughly with the blend. Leave the oils in the scalp overnight and wash off as usual with water and shampoo the next day. You can also use rosemary essential oil in a similar manner. Lavender oil is another great remedy for lice. You can even add a few drops of rosemary or lavender oil to your shampoo and leave it on the scalp for 5-10 minutes before rinsing it off completely. Use essential oils daily for 5 days to see results and eliminate all of the newly hatched larvae.
Mayonnaise not only conditions the hair, it also suffocates lice and kills their eggs. Work a bit of mayo into the hair and leave it on for an hour or overnight. Cover the hair with a shower cap. Mayonnaise kills lice and nits and gives you healthier, shinier hair as well.
Completely saturate the hair and scalp with coconut oil as this drowns and suffocates the lice. Cover the hair with a shower cap and leave it on overnight. Wash it out with regular shampoo. This will also give you silkier hair. For serious infestations, use this remedy on two consecutive nights.
All oils are good lice remedies as they suffocate adult lice and break their life cycle by stopping reproduction. Mix olive oil and lemon juice and saturate the hair with the mixture. Cover it with an old cloth or shower cap and leave it on for 3 hours or overnight. Wash off with warm water and shampoo. Comb the hair out with a fine toothed comb--which should get almost all the lice and nits. Do this once a week.
This is the most important thing you can do for lice removal at home, and it's imperative that you use this step, along with all the other above home remedies. Comb the hair thoroughly using a fine toothed comb--such as a nit comb. If needed, divide the hair into sections so that it becomes easier to comb the entire hair out. Do this every day to get rid of lice and nits.
Lice infestations are contagious and can easily spread from person to person-- especially when large crowds come together. Children are especially susceptible to lice. By regularly inspecting their hair (especially when you see them scratching their heads), you can minimize the risk of major infestations.
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