What To Do If Your Kids Have Lice

Separate hair into sections and hold completed sections up with a clip.

  • Put the foam on damp hair a section at a time.

  • Comb out the nits and bugs starting from close to the scalp all the way to the end of the hair. Hair should be wet. If it dries, spray it again. You can use the foam.
  • Unless you have a methodical, patient, Mother Theresa-type relative in your family who knows what to do, and what to look for, do what I did and call in the professional nitpicker to come get the nits for you. To me, the peace of mind I felt after they left was worth every penny.
  • It is really important to follow the “2 minute quick comb” protocol (comb all around your scalp, then under the pony tail) every day for 14 days, combing through your child’s damp and conditioned hair.
  • On days 3 and 6 following the original treatment, saturate hair with treatment foam and comb through.
  • Be vigilant about periodically checking for the return of head lice to prevent future infestations since your child may be exposed to new cases of lice through school, camp, or contact with other children.

What To Do After Treatment

  • Wash and dry all bedding.
  • Wash clothing worn in the last 2 days by affected family members.
  • Lightly vacuum floors, rugs, couches.
  • Clean items like brushes and clips by soaking in hot soapy water, or put them in a Ziplock baggie and freeze overnight. (Or do what I did – throw them out and get new ones.)

Lice Prevention Tips

  • Avoid head-to-head contact while playing with other children (gym, sports, sleepovers etc.)
  • Keep hair up and back in pony tail, braids, or pigtails, especially at school.
  • Do not share hair brushes, hats, scarves, combs, barrettes, helmets, and other personal hair items.
  • Do the two-minute quick comb once a week to prevent future occurrences.

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  1. Lice suck. My son’s preK had a case last year. Luckily he never got it. I bought Fairy tales shampoo and spray. It is rosemary extracts based and kinda stinky. I spray it on him everyday and he has not had any. No way of telling if it is because of the spray though… Thanks for sharing this Ado and fingers crossed they pack up and jump off the cliff in unison (lice that is).
    Twitter: NorthWestMommy

  2. Thanks for sharing this. There were many cases of head lice in my school when I was a kid and I never caught it, fortunately. Then I thought it was because I was ‘cleaner’ – I guess the opposite is true!
    Twitter: MamaWantsThis

    • Ever since my kids were born I was thanking my lucky stars we never got it – and I really believed it was because they were washed and scrubbed and combed…but I was wrong, so wrong!
      Twitter: Adothemomalog

  3. Oh lord I feel your pain. Last fall we had lice, strep throat, lice, and a husband away 3 weeks out of six. I was ready to shoot myself, my children, and the lice. People I know swear by pantene, and/or baking soda, and/or soaking head in listerine (which makes me shudder when I think about gargling with it…if it kills lice, what the hell is it doing in my throat?) … but the fine-tooth comb and a magnifying mirror are essential. And lice-enders, which is what we used in nyc. Shudder. Am scratching as I write this. Of course, one could also simply shave the heads of one’s children. I thought about it very seriously when we got the second case of little critters in the span of a month.
    Twitter: mannahattamamma

    • Oh wow you really got hit with everything at once! I think getting lice is one of the big challenges, personally. It sucks, and if you aren’t vigilant or are just plain unlucky – it can come back!
      Twitter: Adothemomalog

  4. I always felt incredibly lucky during sports season (field hockey) that we never went through this…. you’ve provided thorough directions to what looks like an incredibly complicated procedure. *now knocking on wood* (and keeping instructions just in case)
    Twitter: wordsxo

    • My kids do field hockey…they don’t wear helmets do they? Probably all the close contact in sports in general puts them at risk, and – touching heads. Oh boy.
      Twitter: Adothemomalog

    • Thanks for you comment Cozy – it’s funny, down here in MD I called two “regular” kid’s hair salons and they hadn’t even heard about lice treatment salons – so it must be a relatively new concept?
      Twitter: Adothemomalog

      • Hi! My NYC salons are for kids and I manufacture a great line of lice prevention products (called “Boo!”). But there ARE Lice Treatment salons opening up all over the place! Here’s an article about one in Chicago (http://abcnews.go.com/Health/story?id=4120482&page=1). I think Lice Treatment salons are taking the stigma out of a problem that people associate with being dirty…when in fact, lice like clean hair! But I always say “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure!” -Cozy
        Twitter: cozycutsforkids

  5. I have a boy, and if he ever gets lice (shudder) I’m just shaving his little misshaped head. I remember getting lice in grade school once, and boy was that EVER fun.

    Good post, very thorough.

    And for real, professional nit pickers?
    Twitter: TheMamamash

  6. Oh yuck, someone just told me tea tree oil works well too. I am hoping that I never have to use these tips but with three starting school one after the other the probabilities are high.

    • Just do a wet comb through once/week to be on the safe side, with all 3! Can you imagine how many hours of nitpicking that would be for you if all 3 came home with it?
      Twitter: Adothemomalog

  7. I’m shocked we haven’t had lice in my household yet, but I know our day will probably come. And I’ll probably throw out the brushes – and maybe some clothes – when it does.
    Twitter: euregirlsandboy

  8. Great information and it’s worth passing on. When I was a kid, living in the Philippines, I got lice and it was embarrassing until I found out that just about everyone living there gets it at one time or another.
    Twitter: AnnHolly

  9. Lice seem to be so much more common nowadays than when I was a kid. We have had to deal with it… and my older daughter has super long, curly hair. I used a different approach, but yeah, lice are such a pain to deal with!
    Twitter: xlmic

  10. I thought about it very seriously when we got the second case of little critters in the span of a month. I think getting lice is one of the big challenges, personally.

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