Did you know that head lice is the 2nd biggest cause of absenteeism in elementary school children? In fact, over 12 million kids get head lice each year. August and September are the busiest months for head lice. Some schools have even relaxed their policies to allow children with nits to come to school – and only those with live bugs are made to stay home. So what should you do if your child picks up this pest from a classmate at school? Check out these 11 tips for head lice treatment.

  1. Check everyone in the household, not just the child in the affected class but only treat those who have active infestations.
  2. Wash any hats, scarves, clothes, bedding, pillow cases, stuffed animals, towels, etc in hot water and dry them on the hottest setting.
  3. Any items that can’t be laundered should be dry cleaned or sealed in a plastic bag for 2 weeks.
  4. Don’t share hats, brushes, combs, or towels that come in contact with the hair.
  5. Vacuum your furniture and floors.
  6. Soak brushes and combs in hot water for 5-10 minutes.
  7. Follow the instructions on your lice treatment medication closely.
  8. Do not use conditioner or a shampoo/conditioner combination product before using lice medicine.
  9. Don’t rewash the hair for 1-2 days after treatment.
  10. Check the head carefully after treatment. If you don’t see any dead lice 8-12 hours after treatment the medicine may not be working. You should contact your health care provider for more treatment options.
  11. Check the hair every 2 to 3 days for 2 to 3 weeks to make sure all lice and nits are completely gone.