This week in the Musings house, we’ve had those annoying creatures known as head lice. As much of a pain in the but it all was, we did manage to learn a few things along the way!
- You know that itching feeling you get when someone starts talking about lice (like right now), that is nothing compared to the itching when you do actually have head lice. It’s been nearly ten years since I last had them (touches ALL the wood) and I still remember the excruciating itching feeling. You know how, as a kid you would roll down a grassy hill and your whole body itched with the fire of a 1000 suns? That is what having head lice feels like.
- The eggs of head lice aren’t actually white. In all of the pamphlets that they used to send home every time there was an outbreak when I was at school, it told the parents to look for small white eggs. My hair is naturally quite dark, and it’s thick, plus there is a hell of a lot of it. All of this means that I get really bad dandruff, so my hair is constantly filled with small white things. What I learned from Mr 4 having head lice is that the eggs are actually more transparent. They looked like water drops on his hair and when I was able to peel one off a strand of hair I could see the louse inside it.
- There is a ton of head lice removal products. Seriously. I stood in the chemist for ten minutes just staring at the shelves, while telling Mr 4 out of the corner of my mouth to stop bloody itching. All of them claimed to be able to kill lice dead in their tracks, and be the best product available. All of them are bloody expensive..I found the more natural a product is, the more expensive it is..
- Banshee like screaming while I washed Mr 4’s hair is nothing…especially when the smoke alarm is then set off from the steam of the shower (seriously why are the smoke alarms always outside the bathroom!?). The hair that I love because it is beautiful and thick just like mine, will be a pain in the arse to comb through, even if I set him up in front of cartoons to do it.
- If the packet of head lice solution says that it includes a comb, buy another just in case. Buy the metal tooth comb, because without a doubt the packet will contain a shitty plastic comb that doesn’t really work. It gets the surface head lice and eggs off, but once you take a closer look there will be more eggs mocking you. If you think you have gotten all of the eggs..comb through for another ten minutes just to be sure.
We’ve been pretty lucky that despite Mr 4 being in childcare regularly for years, this is the first time he has gotten the dreaded head lice. We’re chalking it up to experience at this stage and hoping the little buggers don’t decide to make his head a regular feasting spot!
Have your kids (or you) gotten head lice? What are the things you’ve learned along the way?
Linking up with Emma who is guest hosting for The Lounge today!
Ha ha ha ha – those eggs really DO mock you! Bane of my existence. Five girls. I don’t think we’ve been 100% louse free since 2007…
I had about 3 solid years of headlice where I’d send them off to school louse free and they would come home with new ones. I learned that there is nothing that works better than combing 3 times a week with conditioner in the hair and definitely a metal rather than plastic comb.
Ugh – we’ve spent weeks & weeks combing nightly. Got rid of then over the holidays, so no doubt they’ll be back by the weekend….ARGH~!
We had them from January to about April despite trying everything. Finally we just shaved their heads and got rid of them. It was no mean feat getting Mr 13 to agree to it as he was happily sporting the shaggy longer look. But after 4 months of it, we’d had enough. I think I’ll be doing that again in Summer. Hope Mr 4 is now lice free and they don’t come back. xo
K got it during the last few days at one school before she moved to another – I was totally mortified. But I did learn that your child has to have clean hair in order to get lice so I took comfort in the fact that she at least had clean hair !!!!
Have a great day !
Your post caught my eye…..I was told years ago in my first year of teaching that hairspray (or similar product) was the trick to keeping headlice away. I’ve never caught headlice in all my years of teaching and my kids have never had them either despite it going through Kindy and school multiple times a year. I just give them a spray as they brush their teeth. Hopefully this tip may help others 🙂
I blogged about head lice awhile back when my kids had it, and in my research at the time several medical sites said that the itching was rare and basically a bit psychological once you know the bugs are in there. AND YET I can so relate to what you’ve said about the itching!! It is real and very, very annoying. So, I’ve learned not to trust every medical expert when it comes to weird bugs 🙂
My girls all have bum length hair so I we take extreme measures to avoid lice. It doesn’t always work but was has worked is not washing your hair much during the week when they are at school and spraying with hair spray before you send them off to school.
What really worked when we were going through a stage where we were inundated with the creatures was using the hair straightener to kill the eggs. They turn white when you hit them with the straightener and I’m pretty sure it kills them but at the very least it makes them a lot easier to see and remove.
The other thing I’ve loved is the Robi comb, it finds them and zaps them, even the really small ones that I struggled to see which means they are gone before they have a chance to lay eggs and repeat another cycle.
I am still in denial that boys can get them!! Thanks for making my head itchy!!
my younger sister always seemed to get them when she was at school and the best thing mum found as spraying leave in conditioner mixed with tea tree oil every morning to deter them. As for treatments. If they keep coming back then spray some vinegar in his hair and put a shower cap or cling wrap on. Leave for at least half and hour then comb conditioner through with the lice comb and wash out. The vinegar (brown works best) dissolves the egg glue and the conditioner makes it easier to comb through. make sure you retreat with every couple of days for a few weeks to make sure you end the cycle though. Regardless of what you use to treat them.
I’m writing this with my head wrapped in plastic wrap – with coconut oil under it. Soon to be washed with tea tree shampoo. My lil nugget came home from camp last night with, yup, lice. He was a trooper with the shampoo and comb – and only a few. Today he is all clear – per me and camp. However, I am now full on OCD – washing, vacuuming, scrubbing… and using preventative measures on me. Didn’t sleep all night because all I could think of was the little buggers. Sigh. Thx for your blog. Misery loves company.