Lice are also making their comeback! The right steps to avoid them or get rid of them effectively

Lice are also making their comeback The right steps to

The return to school is a time conducive to the spread of lice! How to prevent risks and overcome the lice and nits of our dear darlings? Our advice to get rid of it effectively.

At school, children love to exchange their rubber bands or hats with their friends. Yet this is how lice go from head to head, even on clean hair. Present all year round, the peaks of contamination are particularly in summer (lice love heat and humidity) and in the weeks following the start of the school year. Also, if your child starts scratching his scalp, look near the root, and mainly behind the ears and the back of the neck: these are the places where lice and slow tend to lodge. How to prevent the appearance of lice? What products to use to get rid of it? Answers with Dr. Arezki Izri, parasitologist and medical entomologist.

The right things to do to prevent your child from catching lice at school

To prevent lice, certain good reflexes are to be put in place on a daily basis:

  • Regularly check your children’s heads to treat as soon as possible (at least once a week). This responsiveness is a guarantee of successful treatment.
  • If your child has long hair, make it a ponytail or a bun (lice will be less likely to settle on the scalp).
  • Teach your child to do not stick his head when he plays at recess, avoid swapping hats with friends.
  • If your child does not have lice, do not treat his head as a “precaution”, because preventive anti-lice treatment is useless and may even increase the resistance of lice to insecticides.

Apply your anti-lice product to dry hair, then, after the exposure time indicated on the instructions, wash your child’s hair with a mild shampoo and water. Then get a anti-lice comb to manually overcome the most reckless lice and nits. Choose a model with teeth that are at least 4 cm long, very tight and preferably made of metal. Between each pass of the comb (from the scalp to the end of the hair), clean your comb on a disposable paper. Finally, dry your child’s head with a hair dryer. A second application should be made a week later in order to kill the lice born from the live nits during the previous use. Then check your child’s skull in the following days to find out if another treatment is necessary.

If you are treating your child for head lice, you should also check the heads of the whole familyso that they don’t exchange them again. Also remember to warn the mistress or the master, as well as those around you. “The ideal would be that all the heads are checked and that all those who have lice are treated on the same day, for example on Saturday, because an untreated head can transmit lice again to those around it and everything has to be redone“, specifies the Inpes.

What anti-lice products to use on your child’s head?

You can turn to a classic local treatment (anti-lice shampoo, lotion, repellent spray, etc). But pay attention to the composition of anti-lice products, which must not contain insecticide !Studies show their effectiveness at a given time, but they are not that harmless“, recalls Dr. Arezki Izri, parasitologist and medical entomologist. He also recommendsavoid essential oils : “used in concentrated form and repeatedly, they are very toxic for insects, but also for children. No studies have demonstrated their safety in children and their effectiveness on lice.“says our expert.

So opt for anti-lice products without insecticide, without paraben, without alcohol, with formulas with natural active ingredients, much more respectful of the child’s scalp. For example, products based on coconut or sweet almond oil will then asphyxiate the lice and dislodge the nits, without attacking the child’s head. This treatment should be done at least once a week for two to three weeks. It is not necessary to alternate the oils, as there is no risk of resistance.

“Pure vinegar is especially effective in removing nits, but its effectiveness stops there”.

Does vinegar kill lice?

Pure vinegar is especially effective in removing nits, but its effectiveness stops there. Also, I recommend using it with caution by diluting a tablespoon in a glass of water“, advises Dr. Arezki Izri.

Is it necessary to wash sheets and pillows to eliminate lice?

You should know that lice live on the scalp because they need moisture, heat and blood. “Once off the head they die in four to six hours“, says our expert. If your child has lice, however, ask him to avoid combing his hair above his bed before bedtime. As a precaution, you can still wash the pillowcases, hats, scarves and other items of clothing that come into contact with your child’s hair or neck Machine wash at a temperature above 50°C.

As for combs and hairbrushes, they can be soaked in an insecticide solution for 5 to 10 minutes. It is recommended to wait three days before using them again.