Home :: Lice
Lice Information - Home Remedies For Head Louse
Skin inflammation caused by tiny
parasites (lice) that live on the hairy areas of
the body, especially the genital area, scalp,
eyelashes, eyebrows, and skin in close contact
with clothing. The tiny, (3mm to 4mm) parasites
bite through skin to obtain nourishment (blood).
The bites cause itching and inflammation. Some
lice live in clothing near skin. Eggs (nits) adhere
Lice are highly contagious, spreading from person to person by close body contact, shared clothes, and other items (such as hats, hairbrushes, and combs). There are three types of human lice, including the following:
- head lice
- body lice
- pubic lice
Crowded or unsanitary living conditions or
- Sexual intercourse (genital or oral) with an infected person.
Signs and symptoms
Itching and scratching, sometimes intense and
usually in hair-covered areas.
- Eggs (nits) on hair shafts.
- Scalp inflammation and matted hair.
- Enlarged lymph glands at the back of the
scalp or in the groin (sometimes).
- Red bite marks and hives.
- Eye inflammation if eyelashes are infected.
The eggs laid by lice are usually visible to the naked eye, making it easy for your physician to diagnose. Pubic lice leave small, brown spots on the parts of clothing that come into contact with the genitals or anus.
Medical Treatment- Home care is usually
sufficient. Lice on eyebrows and eyelashes must be removed by a doctor.
Medication- Your doctor may prescribe antilice (pediculocide) cream, lotion or shampoo. Apply creams or lotions to infected body parts according to instructions. To use the shampoo:
- Wet the hair. Apply 1 tablespoon of shampoo. Lather for 4 minutes, working the lather well into the scalp.
- If shampoo gets in eyes, wash out immediately with water.
- Rinse hair thoroughly and towel dry. Don't use this towel again without laundering and boiling.
- Comb the hair with a fine comb dipped in hot vinegar to remove the lice. The comb must run through the hair repeatedly from the scalp outward until the hair is completely free of nits.
- A single application of shampoo is effective in more than 90% of cases. Don't use more frequently than recommended, because the shampoo may cause skin irritation or be absorbed into the body.
- If the lice infect eyelashes or eyebrows, they must be removed carefully by your doctor. The prescribed medications should not go into the eye or on the eyelashes. You may apply petroleum jelly to the eyelashes for 7 or 8 days after removal.
Try the following remedies, one remedy at a time :-
- Use medicated shampoo, cream or lotion
prescribed by your doctor.
- Shampoo and condition your hair. Then apply coconut milk.
- Machine-wash all clothing and linen in hot water. Dry in the dryer's hot-air cycle. Iron the
clothing and linen, if possible. Washing removes
the lice, and ironing destroys nits.
- Rub Vaseline on the scalp and apply on hair thoroughly. Vaseline will suffocate them, but note that it will be very difficult to wash off the Vaseline. It may need about 6 washes. You may rub some corn flour (or plain flour, maida) into the hair before washing the hair.
- If you don't have a washing machine, iron the
clothes and linen, or seal for 10 days in a
plastic bag to kill lice and nits.
- Dry-clean non-washable items or seal in a,
plastic bag for 10 days.
- Boil articles such as combs, curlers, hairbrushes and barrettes.
- Hair does not have to be shaved.
- Rub a solution of baby oil (or any mineral oil) and vinegar in equal proportions on the scalp and apply on hair thoroughly. Cover the head with a shower cap for 1 hour, then wash with normal shampoo.
Bathe and shampoo often.
- Avoid wearing the same clothing more than a
day or two.
- Change bed linens often.
- Don't share combs, brushes, towels, helmets
or hats with others.