One of the most unpleasant things parents have to deal with is lice. The day your child comes home with a scratchy head is usually full of panic for the kids and the parents. While there are many treatments for lice on the market, many contain toxic ingredients, and your best bet is to use a natural lice treatment.
What is Lice?
KidsHealth.org states that a head louse is a “tiny, wingless parasitic insect that lives among human hairs and feeds on extremely small amounts of blood drawn from the scalp. Although they may sound gross, lice (the plural of louse) are a very common problem, especially for kids ages 3 years to 12 years (girls more often than boys).
Lice aren’t dangerous and they don’t spread disease, but they are contagious and can just be downright annoying. Their bites may cause a child’s scalp to become itchy and inflamed, and persistent scratching may lead to skin irritation and even infection.”
“To get rid of lice, people typically turn to shampoos that contain pesticides like permethrin, pyrethrin, lindane , or malathion. While the amounts of these toxins in the products are small, the potential side effects are anything but. Lindane, for example, has been linked to cancer and nervous system damage while malathion is an organ toxicant and suspected endocrine disruptor. Studies have linked the use of lice shampoos to an increased risk of childhood leukemia and brain cancer and reports to the FDA’s Med Watch program reveal instances of seizures, behavioral changes, neuromuscular issues, skin problems, and other side effects following chemical head lice treatments,” according to HealthyChild.org
Natural Solutions For Lice
1. Comb Out Method
Many products that advertise to be natural can still cause an allergic reaction or burn your child’s head. The safest way to remove lice is to use the comb method. Purchase a Terminator Lice Comb from Amazon. This is a stainless steel comb with micro-grooved teeth which removes lice and nits safely from hair.
You want to coat your child’s hair in a thick substance, such as olive oil or mayonnaise to trap the lice and prevent them from moving, and then start combing. Start at the scalp and work your way down in small sections. Wipe off with a paper towel. Keep in mind that you will need to do this for a few days, up to 14 days, which is how long a typical louse lives.
2. Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil is a natural solution for lice, it is anti fungal and antiseptic.
Livestrong.com states that: “Two studies published on the PubMed.gov website describe research on the effects of tea tree oil for getting rid of lice. The first study was conducted at the University of Reading School of Pharmacology in Reading, Berkshire, United Kingdom, and published in “Phytoteripia” in December of 2007. In this study, the research found tea tree oil to be the most effective natural essential oil tested for eradicating lice and dust mites.
Another study was conducted at Trinity College School of Pharmacy in Dublin, Ireland, and published in the “Journal of Pharmacy & Pharmacology” in March of 2004. This study investigated tea tree oil’s ability to kill lice infestations. Tea tree oil effectively eliminated the lice and the results were repeatable. The study credits the insecticidal properties in the oil for the success.”
Purchase 100% Pure Tea Tree Oil and add five to six drops to your child’s regular shampoo and wash their hair. Do this every day followed by combing until all the lice are gone.
3. Vinegar for Lice
Vinegar has acetic acid which will work to remove lice eggs. Although it won’t kill off the living lice themselves, it will dissolve the shell of the lice eggs, making it easy to remove from hair. Apply vinegar to your child’s hair and then comb it out.
4. Olive Oil for Lice
Headlicecenter.com reports that a “test conducted by the Harvard School of Public Health found that lice submerged in olive oil for two hours die asphyxiated. The effectiveness of olive oil is explained by the fact that by coating the skin of adult lice, it deprives them of oxygen. As they can no longer breathe, they die.”
To use olive oil as a home remedy for lice, the center recommends to rub it in your child’s hair and put plastic wrap around it. Leave the plastic wrap on for about two to three hours, and then wash out. Repeat the process for a few days.
It’s worthy to mention that the Harvard study only looked at olive oil for live lice, and not lice eggs. To remove both lice and lice eggs, I recommend using a mixture of olive oil and vinegar.
Make sure to wash everything that your child has come into contact with, including sheets, pillowcases, blankets, towels, soft toys, etc.
Simple Natural Solutions is your source for tips, recipes and advice for a healthier lifestyle. Sometimes, making a few small changes at home will make dramatic differences for your and your family’s health. Visit www.simplenaturalsolutions.com for more information.