No one wants to deal with head lice, especially after a hectic and stressful holiday period. Parents have enough on their hands with the travel, entertaining, shopping, and cleaning everything up into the new year.
Unfortunately, the holidays are a peak time for head lice, so it’s important to be aware. This is especially true if you traveled to spend time with other families or hosted other families in your home. Lice primarily spread through head-to-head contact, and children get lice more often than adults do because kids spend more time in close contact.
If you were the visitor or the visited, there are some steps you can take to ensure you don’t send your child back to school with head lice. Here is a checklist for preventing head lice infestations after the holidays:
- Get a professional lice screening. If there is a chance you or your children were exposed to head lice over the holidays, the best thing you can do for yourself and your peace of mind is getting a professional head lice screening. Lice Clinics of America treatment centers offer professional screenings for a nominal fee, and if you do have lice and choose to be treated at a clinic, the fee is waived. Head lice can be very difficult to diagnose, and false positives are very common. You don’t want to get treated for head lice if you don’t have the bugs.
- Use preventative products. People tend to deal with head lice reactively, meaning they panic when they find head lice in their children and try to get rid of the problem as fast as they can. That’s perfectly normal, but there are now products that can prevent head lice in the first place. Shampoos, conditioners, and sprays for hair, and products to treat bedding, clothing, and furniture where lice may have fallen are all available at our clinic and online. Unlike most over-the-counter lice products, all Lice Clinics of America products are pesticide-free.
- Keep long hair pulled back. The first few days of school are when your children are at the highest risk of getting head lice. Because lice spread through hair-to-hair contact, keeping hair short or keeping long hair pulled back can prevent exposure.
- Talk to your children about how head lice spread and help them understand behavior that can prevent them from getting head lice, such as taking group photos with heads pressed together, or sharing combs, brushes and any articles of clothing that might have stray hair on them. It’s rare, but lice can spread when a strand of hair with a louse on it falls onto a coat, scarf, or hat. The louse will crawl on to the first human head it can find because it cannot live anywhere but a human scalp.
- Don’t panic! If you do find head lice or suspect your child has head lice, don’t panic! Neither you nor your child did anything wrong. Lice happen to everyone, and we now have the technology to get rid of head lice quickly and safely. Lice Clinics of America is the exclusive provider of lice treatment using the FDA-cleared AirAlléÒ medical device, clinically shown to kill live lice and eggs (nits) in a single treatment that takes about an hour. It’s easy and it has successfully treated more than 800,000 cases of head lice worldwide!
There are more than 350 Lice Clinics of America treatment centers in more than 30 countries, making it the largest and fastest growing network of professional head lice treatment centers in the world.
For more information visit www.liceclinicsofamerica.com.