Head lice are most common to kids especially during summer. Sometimes lice are resistant to common chemicals used to control them and are hard to kill without prescription medication.
Now that school has officially begun, your children will struggle with head lice. Here are a couple of helpful tips to parents:
1. Stay Calm
Head lice are just a nuisance but almost every child will most likely go through this phase. It doesn’t necessarily mean that this is a symptom of a serious disease.
2. Don’t wait for kids to start scratching
Until sensitivity sets in, lice aren’t usually itchy. It will usually develop 4-6 weeks after a person has head lice. Other symptoms, aside from itching, is the sensation of something moving in the hair. Kids may experience irritability and sleeplessness. Treat head lice even before kids start to scratch.
3. Misdiagnosis is common
A kid who has head lice is best identified when you find a live nymph or adult louse on the scalp or hair. However, some parents may mistake dandruff/dirt for head lice eggs. Health officials said that “If no nymphs or adults are seen, and the only nits found are more than ¼ inch from the scalp, then the infestation is probably old and no longer active — and does not need to be treated.”
4. Get a prescription
Recent studies show that lice tested have mutated and are no longer vulnerable to the active ingredient in popular over-the-counter treatments for head lice. Doctors advise parents to skip over-the-counter treatments and go directly to their pediatrician for a prescription for treatment.
5. No need to miss school
School district policies and parents’ opinions vary, but state health officials say children diagnosed with live head lice do not need to be sent home early from school; they can go home at the end of the day, be treated, and return to class after appropriate treatment has begun.
It is best to find out your school’s policy decision about head lice before you need to know it. Experts agree, personal hygiene or cleanliness in the home or school has nothing to do with getting head lice.Sep 2015