Head Lice: Prevention
1. Disinfect the hair care tools
All hair care tools must be disinfected after they have been used by an infected person. This can be done by soaking these items in hot water (130 degrees F) for 5 to 10 minutes. This will make sure that all the lice which have boarded these items do not survive.
2. Use vinegar
Prepare a vinegar solution for rinsing your hair. Use equal parts of water and vinegar for making this solution. Use this solution for rinsing your hair after you have washed them. The acidity of the vinegar will certainly reduce the risk of lice infestation.
3. Shampoo your hairs regularly
Use a coconut oil based shampoo for washing your hair regularly. Coconut oil is recommended because it contains dodecyl alcohol which has the ability of killing adult lice. Try to wash your hair everyday. This will make sure that lice infestation does not occur again.
4. Machine wash clothing, bed linens and other items
All the clothing items worn by the infected person must be machine washed. Use the hottest water possible for washing these items and then dry them on high heat. The clothing items which cannot be washed in machine must be dry cleaned and placed in an airtight bag for weeks.
5. Create your own lice bursting spray
Head lice are highly resentful towards tea tree oil which makes it an excellent preventive measure against head lice. You can create lice bursting spray yourself with the help of tea tree oil, this can be commonly found in pharmacies. Pour some water in a spray bottle and to every 2 ounces of water add 10 drops of tea tree oil. Spray this solution liberally on your child’s head everyday. You can even spray this solution on the bedding, car upholstery, furniture and even on the hats and other outerwear of your child. Add few drops of cinnamon or lavender oil into this spray if your child is uncomfortable with the medicinal smell of the tea tree oil.
6. Take precautions at sleepovers
Lice are very common in an infected child’s bed and pillow, so it is your responsibility to teach your child to use their own sleeping bag and pillows. One of the prime opportunities for the lice to travel from one head to the other is when two children are sharing a pillow. Place the pillow and sleeping bag into the washer for at least half hour after your child returns from a sleepover.
7. Understand some things are not for sharing
Head lice are transmitted from an infected person to others if they are in the habit of sharing items such as scarves, hats, combs and brushes. It has been observed that children are of the opinion that it will be absolutely safe for them to share these items with their best buddies. You must make your children learn that lice are not particular about relationships.
8. Keep clothing separated
Head lice are known to survive for a couple of days even without a human host, that is they will not die if some of them are left on one’s clothing. Head lice are transferred from one person to another even through clothing. For instance, lice can transmit from one person to another if their clothing items such as scarves, earmuffs, hats and jackets are piled together. These are perhaps one of the best opportunities for the lice to relocate. One must advice children to keep all of their clothes away from such piles.
9. Teach avoidance
Lice crawl and that too very slowly; they cannot jump from one person to the next. They can move from one person to another only through head contact. Therefore, the best thing that one can do to prevent lice is to avoid head to head contact with the another person. Kids have a habit of putting their heads together to have conversations and often brush their heads together during play. One should make them learn to limit this form of contact.