Bugs again

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by Malika, Nov 25, 2011.

  1. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    For anyone struggling with bugs (is your daughter free of them now, IC)?, I today came across an electronic comb that purportedly kills them as you comb the hair - much easier than messy chemical shampoos. It was on sale in France but I imagine would be available in the States.
  2. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Interesting concept, but... knowing how tough these things are to get rid of? I wouldn't depend on it.
  3. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    If they're like the electronic devices that are supposed to deter mice, save your money and bank on the poison instead.......as in the shampoos, slow going over with the nit comb, washing everything washable in the house and bagging sealing everything else for 2wks. Gawd I hate the things. Nichole had to cut her waist length hair because getting the nit comb through it was a nightmare. :(
  4. Mamaof5

    Mamaof5 Guest

    That's what she's talking about. It's actually a decent product.
  5. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Mamaof5 - have you actually USED it?

    I can see where it might zap the live bugs... but the eggs? the next generation? Not sure how this would break the cycle.

    As PART of a process, might have some value, especially initially - get rid of everything that's there and THEN work through the process (there are other non-chemical means...)
  6. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Watch the video, IC! The comb is part of a system - after using the comb, you use the "lice egg shampoo" and then a special egg comb. So you don't actually avoid the shampoo part...
  7. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Forgot... I have a question for the "head lice afficionados" among you. There is an outbreak at J's school. I had a look at his scalp and there is nothing visible. However he is occasionally scratching his head - not often or much but a couple of times a day maybe. Is this likely to be lice or would he be scratching much more than that? I am reluctant to use the shampoo if it is not necessary as I gather it contains pretty strong chemicals.
  8. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Oddly enough, I never noticed them on Travis or husband until I shaved their heads. (yet they were scratching) Due to the color of their hair......an odd shade of strawberry blonde.....the lil buggers sort of blended in and were very tough to see. Once their heads were shaved it was still hard. I had to look closely and observe for a few minutes and poof there they were and there were tons of them! Tossed the shaver and dosed them up well. Now one would think you'd see them easier in a males short hair......but the opposite turned out to be true due to hair color.

    If the comb isi part of the whole system, sounds rather good and probably effective, and maybe you wouldn't have to use quite so much of the shampoo.
  9. buddy

    buddy New Member

    I have been to inservice trainings etc. and when I had it talked to the docs etc. (because I wanted to tell the parents in the daycare I owned, but wanted info for them--none of them got it ever when I was there, and in the whole time I owned my daycare no one did either) I was told repeatedly to never use the chemical shampoos for preventative measures. it simply wont work because of the life cycle and timing. You are right, it is not a benign thing. These are pesticides so if you need them, ok can try but not in a panic. (I say panic not because you are panicking, because I panicked) You will see them if there...really you can get the comb and use that and you will see if there are little eggs that get picked up. they can look like dandruff but you will see the difference if you pick them off and you wont catch it from doing that.

    ps malika....lol, lice ITCH...maybe people react differently, but I highly doubt J would just scratch one or two times...tee hee, my niece, sisters and I were crazy itching!

    (dont mean the zapper comb, I mean the normal very fine lice comb, which around here can be kind of expensive if not part of the lice kit, but you can get them in pet stores...flea combs)
  10. Mamaof5

    Mamaof5 Guest

  11. buddy

    buddy New Member

    problem here, if you choose a non medicated route, your kid will not go back to school for a long time. there can be no more nits. (oh gosh I am itching my head since I read this)
  12. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    If you want to know WHETHER your child has this problem...

    Go get a flea comb from the pet store, and a bottle of regular hair conditioner, if you don't have it in the house.

    Wash the childs hair normally, towel dry, and add conditioner - but don't rince yet.
    Grab a bucket of water to have beside you.

    NOW use the flea comb, nit-comb-style, to comb through the entire head of hair, multiple times, in all different directions.
    *** rince the comb frequently ***

    If you're finding bugs on the comb, OR see them floating in the water... you have a problem, and need to deal with it.
    Can't find anything? try again in half a week or so... some sites recommend re-checking periodically for a couple of weeks.
  13. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Malika, a little scratching is normal. Check the nape of his neck for signs of a rash - if there is any redness there to a greater extent than anywhere else, check his scalp in daylight for eggs or lice. Or do the conditioner run I recommend below.

    IC, you have learned my lessons well, grasshopper...

    Combing the hair in multiple directions is important because otherwise you can miss some. To avoid using pesticides unnecessarily, the conditioner is almost essential.

    Other tips - tie back your own hair and/or cover it up with a shower cap.

    I looked at the website - it's good, but leaves out some stuff and has things in it I don't think are necessary, such as rinsing the comb under running water. I keep a bowl of water beside me and swish the comb in that. If there is any detergent in the water (which is highly likely given the hair products you have traces of in te individual's hair) then any beasties will sink and drown. Just swish the comb and look at it carefully to make sure you have got everything out of it.

    What sort of comb to use - ALWAYS use a wide-toothed comb first, a detangler. Get all the hair detangled and lying straight. Then I use a PLASTIC fine toothed comb to get the lice. Once you have covered the entire scalp, change direction. Again use the detangler comb to achieve this, before beginning again with the fine tooth comb.

    Once you have gone over the scalp with the plastic fine-toothed comb and think you have all the lice, go back over the scalp with the metal-toothed egg comb.

    By the way, as soon as you find lice, go get the pesticides. Only unless there are serious risks, should you avoid this stage.

    If you do get to the pesticide stage, do not count on the pesticides to kill lice/eggs. But they DO have a "knock-down" effect which will kill some of the beasties and slow down the rest (makes them sick, if nothing else) which makes it a lot easier for you to find them and catch them.

    Finally - to check a head, use daylight. Even a dull day in winter is more effective than a handy desk lamp. I think it's got something to do with the broader range of wavelengths from sunlight.

    That website - it had different intervals for checking hair. It also said that pesticides don't work. Well, they do. Just not 100%, necessarily.
    My own recommendation - do the comb through again (conditioner only if you are worried about chemicals, but go carefully because the little beggars can be lively) EVERY 6 DAYS. And if you find live animals, use pesticide again.

    You can stop when you have a clear run. But chances are the child is still likely to be at risk of reinfestation (unless the whole school gets treated at the same time), so a fortnightly conditioner check is always a good idea. We sit the kid in front of the TV with towels around them, after having shampooed hair coated with conditioner. Hair needs to be damp at least. And you don't hot wash clothing or towels, just dump the stuff in the laundry. Lice can't travel far, they die away from body heat. Hair brushes etc (hats, hair scrunchies etc) can be bagged and put in the freezer for a couple of hours. Overnight if you're really paranoid, but seriously, a couple of hours will definitely do the trick. Hey, a fridge would do it.

    There is a "natural alternative" to pesticides in ti-tree oil, but from personal experience, although I swear by ti-tree oil in so many uses, lice could drink it and not suffer. We were on holidays in Queensland, had been for a fortnight, putting daily applications of NEAT ti-tree oil on difficult child 3's head to try to heal a nasty scalp wound he had been picking at for months. He had not been at school for a month, but we found nits and lice one day, realised he'd had the infestation for ages (range of different ages of lice indicating multiple generations). And they'd all been exposed to daily pure ti-tree oil. So commercial preparations that use a fraction of the amount we'd been using are not going to work. But ti-tree oil can help soothe the scalp inflamed from the rough combing.

    That day in Queensland, we'd been about to go to a market I desperately wanted to see. We dashed out, bought the chemical (a foam shampoo this time) then did the treatment. Fifteen minutes on the hair (while he watched cable TV in a sunny corner of the room) then the comb through. I had the full comb-through done in half an hour and we were on the road, 45 minutes after we'd found the first louse. difficult child 3 had been de-loused thoroughly and when we got home I de-bugged his hair by hand (ie removing what eggs I could find) in the last of the daylight. We did the next treatment 6 days later, caught no lice at all, not even baby lice which meant we had got them all first time round PLUS the chemical had killed any eggs I had missed (and you can never count on getting all the eggs).

    So if you're thorough, you can get them all first time. But you do need to check. And keep checking. Because other parents are not so vigilant as you.

    Warn your kids to stay away from sharing dress-up clothes, especially hats, at school. Never share combs or brushes (except nit combs, and combs you have personally checked or shoved in the freezer). easy child picked up her first dose of nits from dress-up hats at after school care when she was 5 years old.

  14. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    And the difficult child of course sits perfectly still and co-operatively during the whole exercise :)
  15. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Oh my this thread is bringing back memories from when difficult child was a baby. We ended up with lice in the house twice within weeks. Of course, it didn't affect anyone except my niece and me. For whatever reason they don't seem to like AA hear as much and they didn't like husband's hair either. We tried everything to get them out of our hair and everything failed. I'm embarrassed to admit that we followed mother in law's advice and sprayed our hair with Black Flag and wrapped it in a towel for 5 minutes. I definitely wouldn't recommend it but it did work.
  16. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    LOL Sharon. You know, Lice is something that we have never had to deal with in our family. I dont know how it missed us because it went through the schools several times but it never came home. Odd too because Jamie had shoulder length hair!
  17. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    "Perfectly still" is not a requirement... "relatively still" is more like it.

    You're going to take less time than WE had to... I'm guessing J's hair isn't half-way down his back.
    Worst case... you "could" shave his head and have his hair grow back... (not sure I'd do that for school-age!)

    "Whole exercise"... well, that depends on whether or not you find bugs in his hair. If your first few comb-throughs are coming up with bugs... skip the rest of the "checking" and move to "treatment" - no point in him having to sit through it all TWICE.
    But if you're not finding anything... then yes, your first pass does need to be thorough.

    Hope you've got an extra packet of patience in your cupboard...