How to Prevent and Treat Head Lice Naturally

Monday, December 15, 2008 by: Jo Hartley
Tags: head lice, health news, Natural News

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(NaturalNews) If you have children in school, it is likely that you are concerned about head lice. Unfortunately, the standard practice of teaching your children to share can have its negative effects if children share their hats, combs, and other personal items. Sharing these things can lead to the spread of bacteria, germs, and even head lice.

Head lice do not care who they infect. Race, gender, or even cleanliness makes absolutely no difference where lice infestation is concerned. There is even new evidence that head lice infest clean hair easier than hair that is not so clean. What's more, when one member of a family becomes infected with head lice, it is extremely likely that the entire family (and house) will become infected.

Infestation happens quite fast and it is a very simple process. All that is necessary is for a child with head lice to share a personal care item with someone else. This allows the head lice to be transferred from one host to a new host.

The good news is that head lice are easy to recognize. There will be small, white eggs that are attached to the hair. They are not like dandruff in that they will not easily flake off if brushed. The lice are similar to fleas but resemble crabs in appearance. Often the nits will be evident but the lice will not be visible.

The bad news is that head lice are not so easy to eliminate or prevent. Using over-the-counter or prescription shampoos to attempt to prevent head lice is not recommended. Head lice are actually becoming resistant to many of these treatments and if these are overused it may cause harm.

To attempt to prevent head lice naturally here are some suggestions:

•Direct your children not to share personal items like combs, brushes, and hats. Do explain that it is fine to share other items (like toys) but that the aforementioned things should not be shared. Keep in mind that it is probably best not to dwell on the idea of "bugs" with your children.

•Even at home each family member should have their own personal care items and hats.

•Tea tree oil is effective as a natural repellant against head lice. You can either purchase a commercial tea tree oil shampoo or make your own by adding 3-5 drops of tea tree oil to one ounce of natural shampoo.

•Tea tree oil can also be applied directly to a fine-toothed comb and combed through dry hair. Do not apply tea tree oil directly to the scalp.

•Wash bedding and jackets frequently. Tea tree oil can be safely added to detergent (8-10 drops) directly into the washing machine.

If your school is having problems with head lice, it may be a good idea to visit your child's classroom to assess the situation. If hats and coats are stored too closely together due to over-crowded conditions, this may be part of the problem. There may be some alternatives you can suggest to minimize the spread of head lice among the students.

Remember, good hygiene alone will not prevent head lice…but there are natural and effective ways to minimize the chances that your family will face an infestation.


About the author

Jo Hartley
Wife, Mother of 8, and Grandmother of 2
Jo is a 41 year old home educator who has always gravitated toward a natural approach to life. She enjoys learning as much as possible about just about anything! - Current Events - Simply Abundant Living

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