7/15/2010

How to deal with your own head lice.

So, you are the one who has head lice. What if you don't have a buddy to help look through your head? If you are on your own, here's what you can do:
1. Breathe. So, you might have head lice.  So what?  You'll be fine. Even if you are on your own, you have what it takes to beat this.

2. Get a good metal lice comb. Now, not all metal lice combs are created equal.  Some still have pretty bendable teeth and you need a comb with rigid teeth. Check here for some options. When you are getting the lice and bugs out of someone else's head, a proper comb is very helpful. When you are removing the lice from your own head, it is almost essential. (Note: If there is no way you can get a good metal lice comb, still use whatever comb you have.  Doing something is always better than doing nothing. Even a regular plastic comb with teeth close together can remove adult bugs from wet, conditioned hair.  It won't remove the eggs, but if you can get the bugs out before they lay more eggs, you are still ahead in the game and can still outrun the lice cycle over time.)

3. Hop in the bath or shower.  Wet your head and saturate your head with hair conditioner.  It doesn't have to be expensive conditioner.  Any generic conditioner will do.  Leave the conditioner in.

4. Use a brush to completely detangle your conditioned hair. Still leave the conditioner in. 
 
5. Start combing with the lice comb. Comb your entire head - from root to tip. Check the comb after each stroke, removing each nit or bug from the comb. You can do this by simply rinsing the comb in the shower or wiping it on a piece of toilet paper. (If you can't wipe the bugs/eggs out of the comb, use dental floss to clean between the comb's teeth. Do not pry the teeth apart!)

6. Comb until you no longer comb out any lice or nits. How long do you comb? As long as you need to but don't exhaust yourself with a lice picking marathon.  Here's an easy rule to follow - comb 100 times (over the whole head, not 100 times for just one section of hair). If you comb out an egg or a bug, start your counting again from '1'. Don't stop until you have completed 100 strokes with no sign of eggs or bugs. Your head lice and nits may not be completely gone, but you've effectively reduced your problem and probably dealt with any adult bugs. If you comb and comb and keep finding nits or bugs, don't be discouraged. With every stroke, you are making things better. If the process is taking way to long, then take a break, or just stop for now and get back to your scalp again later on or the next day. But make sure you do get back to it.

And here's one other tool in the fight that you can use if you want...

7. Later on, grab your hair dryer. Separate your DRY hair into at least 20 sections (or grab one small section at a time.) Turn your blow dryer on the fastest setting - fastest but not hottest. Keep it on the warm (not hot) setting. Directing the hair to the scalp, blow dry each section for at least 30 seconds on one side and then 30 seconds on the other. In a study from the University of Utah, this directed blowing with a regular blow dryer was found to kill 53% of the bugs and 98% of the eggs. Though these numbers seem impressive, I find combing to be the most effective tool.  If you have to choose between wet combing or blow drying, I'd go with combing.  It actually gets things off the head.
 
8. Do it all again in a few days. Keep spending time on your scalp until you have had 2 weeks without seeing lice or nits. Why two weeks? Because there is a small chance that even after a week of combing and blowing, you may still have a viable egg on your head that will hatch after 7-10 days. So, you need to keep combing to catch it. Don't worry, after a couple of days, this process will get quicker and easier. If the numbers are dwindling, you can alternate activities: comb one day, blow dry the next. And remember, if you remain diligent, you will be combing them out faster than they can reproduce.

9. Continue your search for a lice buddy. It is comforting if you can find someone who can actually see your scalp, pick out any seen nits or bugs, and give you moral support. However, if you can't find a buddy, you can still deal with this effectively if you are willing to put in the time and the effort.

But, Cathy, what about "shampoos" or "treatments"? Won't they make this process go so much faster?

No.  Don't waste your money.

Don't I have to do a bunch of house cleaning and laundry now? 

No.  Don't waste your time.

No matter what lice product you use, you are always instructed to manually remove the bugs and nits because no single 'treatment' of any kind is 100% effective and most are completely ineffective. I always say, skip the middle man - just go right to the combing. You need to put in some extra time over the next couple of weeks to ensure that  the lice are off the head but don't waste your time on any thing else (extra cleaning, laundry).

And don't panic. You really can deal with this.  It's not a disease.  You didn't do anything wrong.  It can happen to anybody. It's just head lice.

164 comments:

Elizabeth said...

Hi! I found your blog in my mad search to solve a continuing problem that *might* be bordering on psychological (I hope). Three weeks ago I found out I had lice and immediatly went to a lice lady like yourself. She addressed the problem but I still feel itchy and crawly. I've checked and can find no bugs or nits. I visited her again and she found nothing (but she just did a dry check). Then last night I scratched my head and and found a bug!! Did not look like a louse, but I could not recognize it so it might have been. Wet check = no bugs or eggs. It's an hour drive and $25 to get a 'wet check' from the lady. Do you recommend it? Or think I'm losing it? I have very long hair and a lot of it. (But soft and easy to comb through). Don't know. To sound dramatic, this is ruining my life.

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

I completely understand your situation - this happens with many of my clients. Hey, I deal with lice regularly and I still scratch my head when talking about them.

It's hard to give advice when I haven't seen your head, but based on what you have told me, here's what I think. You say the bug you saw didn't look like a louse - then it probably wasn't one. (Do you have bites anywhere else on your body? Are there any other bugs in your home that you need to deal with?) When you say that the lice professional addressed the problem, I hope you mean that she manually removed all the nits and lice and really showed you what to be looking for in the future. I generally trust the findings of any seasoned lice professional so my guess is that the itch on your head is all in your head. After you have had head lice, you can be hypersensitive of any scalp itch. You may also be irritating your scalp by over washing or over combing. Then again, if you knowingly had lice for many months and had quite a few adult bugs on your head, I would still wet comb everyday for at least 2 weeks, no matter what a lice lady said.

Being diligent is not a bad thing. Being paranoid can suck the life out of you. So, trust what you see in your comb and hear from others instead of trusting the itch (or if the itch persists, check out other possibilities with a medical professional). Do you have a friend or family member who can occasionally check an itchy spot for lice activity? Even if they don't know what to look for, they can pick out anything they see and show it to you for verification. If you have a proper metal lice comb, then your own wet checking should be enough to spot an active case of head lice. Now, there is always a small chance that something got missed or that a brand new case has started. Either way, you know that lice are not some microscopic virus - if you have lice, a good wet combing with a proper metal comb will find the lice if you have them. If you are doing this, and are not finding anything, then it is unlikely that you have an active case of head lice.

You've already had that lice lady check again and you sound as if you have been quite thorough in your own lice checks. If I were you, I would give your scalp a rest for a couple of days before combing again. Read the other articles on the blog for more suggestions. Also, don't go crazy doing extra house cleaning - it drains your energy and is not proven to make any difference in the fight against head lice. Get some sleep, eat well, and trust that you have dealt with this problem, and that if you ever get head lice again, you can beat it again. Good luck.

julia said...

hey ive just found out last night i have head lice im a teen and absalootly cannot tell my mother she sererously said that if i get lice ever again im am like not ever sleeping over ever in my life and not going to school for a month she is not over axadgerating i already convinced her and i just had a sleepover and her lil sis had head lice:( it might be better if she doesnt know also because she gets so grossed out that she starts to cry so this leaves me on my own ive had lice previously and she hated it and i had the nice lice lady take them out also. well i need some advise plz we moved from edmonton to vacouver this year so..

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Julia,
This situation sounds tough - I can really understand why you don't want to tell your mom, but I still think that you should speak with her because this is something that could affect everyone in the household. Also, I think you need an adult to help you assess the lice situation or to see if there are any other health/bug issues going on.

You know, if you do have head lice, there is no certainty that you got it from the sleepover. You may have picked up head lice from somewhere or someone else. If you are able to get a good metal lice comb (check one out on this blog) then you can start combing your own hair (read the articles on the blog for "how-to" tips.) Or you can also ask your friend from the sleepover (or her parents) to help you, since it seems that lice are no stranger to that household. If you just got lice recently, then you should be able to take care of it relatively easily - spend the time needed daily to get rid of the lice (read the advice on this blog). If you have a lot of lice/nits, then you've had them for a longer time and again, you should probably tell your mom because she might have head lice as well.

If you can show your mom that head lice is a common occurrence - something that can happen to everyone - and that you are responsible and willing to really take the time to deal with it, maybe she won't be as upset. I have found that the people who really freak out about head lice don't always understand it. You can show her the articles on this blog and find additional information on some of the links. She can also call me if she's really upset. Good luck.

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

You may never know where your head lice came from. Some experts say that it has to be passed hair to hair from person to person, some say that it may come from using someone else's brush or hat, some say that it can come from the mattress at a summer camp or the seat in a movie theatre. The good thing is that you don't have to know where you got it in order to treat it.
The best advice I can give you is to get a proper metal lice comb. If you do have head lice, you need to remove them and if you don't have someone else to pick them out, you need the right comb to do the job. This blog can give you a description of some good combs. I'm not sure if you can get all of these combs in your area, but I am sure that you could order the LiceMeister from www.headlice.org.
If you have combed and combed and feel confident you have most of the lice out(follow the instructions on this blog), you will still be itchy for a few days after the lice are gone - it's like with a mosquito bite - the bug is long gone but the itch remains. I discourage using lice "shampoos" or over washing your hair just because these activities can really irritate your scalp.
So, get a good comb, and then (wet)comb and comb until you have combed at least 100 strokes with no eggs or bugs coming out. Do this every day for at least 10 days. This may seem like a lot of time spent on lice removal, but it is necessary and worth it. If you get the bugs off of your head and can take out the nits before they hatch, the itch will go away.
Good luck!

Emily said...

Dear Cathy,

I just wanted to say thank you. Seriously, thank you so much for your wealth of information on this blog. I was so disappointed to find out that you lived in AB, while I'm in Kingston, Ontario! I picked up lice several weeks ago even though I don't have contact with kids, other people's brushes, or even other people's homes very often. It had me questioning my sanity when I told my boyfriend and his mum about it. [SO EMBARRASSING.] Of course they didn't believe me at first and chalked it up to having a dry scalp during the winter. I had lice in middle school, however, and I recognized the itch and small bite marks on the back of my ears and the base of my neck. So I frantically started searching the internet, knowing the chemicals at the pharmacy were a no-go, and I found you. Even though I'll try and get my boyfriend and his mother to help me comb, I found your "Comb it yourself" blog immensely helpful. Hopefully I'm on my way to being lice free now that I've bought a gallon of Tea-Tree oil and the Licemeister comb! Thanks again!

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Glad to help!
One thing - unless you see some signs of actual head lice(eggs or bugs), you can't be sure what the itch is coming from. I'm glad you got the Licemeister comb - if you do have lice, this comb will show you the signs. If you comb and comb and you find no eggs or no bugs, then look for other causes of your itching.
Also, while there is some evidence that tea tree oil has some insecticidal properties, I have had many, many clients who used tea tree oil with little success. Also, overuse of any hair product can actually increase your itching. So, use the tea tree oil with care and and remember that the main thing you need to do is to comb and (if you can find a buddy) pick out the bugs and eggs. As I have said above, if you give your scalp some serious time and attention, you can deal with this problem.
Good luck.

Anonymous said...

Apparently, using straighteners kills them, well "FRYS" them! I haven't tried it myself yet, but a lot of people have recommended it after seeing results!

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

I wish it were that easy. In my experience, straighteners do not kill them. I have been to many, many homes where this was tried first and the individuals were so surprised to still find live bugs on the head. Please see my March 2012 blog post entitled "Flat Iron. Bad idea." Straighteners can cause serious burns that close to the head and you still don't kill the head lice.

Anonymous said...

My daughter has lice and nits. She has been itching for awhile now a few weeks but, I thought her scalp was just dry from swimming so much at camp. Ugh, she is loaded with Lice and nits. I did a treatment RIT. I have combed and combed hours worth. I can not get all the bits out of her hair!! I don't know what to do??? Any ideas??? Heather
hmr1975@yahoo.com

Anonymous said...

Hi.
this is horrible. My son had lice and gave it to me. I have long hair and noone to check my head. My son is clear of nits and bugs. We did listerine and vinegar. It worked great for him. I am combing and i find nothing but i still feel crawls. I am so upset i feel like its never gonna go away. I am in tears!
Please help.

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

To the Anonymous that used Listerine and vinegar,
if you are combing with a good lice comb and finding nothing, then you probably have nothing. Are you wet coming? Lice is detected with more accuracy when combing through wet, conditioned hair. Are you using a good comb? Proper long-toothed metal combs, such as the Licemeister or the Nit-free Terminator will comb out many nits and nymphs. As lice has been in your home recently, I would recommend that everyone in the household comb through their hair every few days just in case, but if you go through a 2 week period without seeing any bugs or nits, you can be confident you are lice free.
Just because you feel crawling on your head does not necessarily mean that you actually have lice. After lice has been found in the home, everyone in the home starts to itch because it's on their minds, but it doesn't mean that it is surely on their scalps.
If you have a good comb, trust it. Even a fine-toothed plastic comb can comb out adult bugs. If you think you have lice, keep combing regularly. You will find it. If you find it, then continued combing will get rid of it too in time.

One comment about the Listerine and vinegar. I'm glad you feel this worked for your son's head lice. However, head lice are not a health issue but Listerine or vinegar in the eyes could be. Sometimes even "natural" or home remedies can have side effects. At the very least, I've met many a parent who has said their child has howled in pain because of the sting of the vinegar on the lice bits. If his lice come back, I do not recommend that you reapply these home remedies. But you should continue to comb through your son's hair until you have gone two weeks with no lice or new nits.
Good luck.

Jessica said...

My 4 year old stepdaughter contracted lice from a b-day party and within 2 days gave it to me... I have been searchig the interet for hours trying to find a solution to my problem!! We both have long thick wavy hair! I have no problem getting the bugs/nits out of her hair. I just cant do my own and I have no one to help me even check the back of my head! I have A LOT of hair!! I dont want to miss something and re-infest my little girl! the itching makes her so uncomfortable :(

Samou said...

Hi,
I've had lice for a few days now and have been using vinegar, rubbing alcohol, olive oil and just about everything else. I plan on using your directions as soon as I can get in the bathroom, but unfortunately I cannot wet comb for the two days following this because I have busy days that I have no way out of. Do you think if I skip two days and wet come on Sunday I will still be alright? And I'll have my mother to help comb on Sunday night.

Anonymous said...

Hi i am really wondering if i still have lice. about a month ago i had lice and i spent four hours combing out the nits and bugs. my grandma got RID and it took care of the problem for awhile and just two days ago i found another louse! its driving me insane! my mom then got RID again and i think we combed out all the bugs. but i keep feeling a tickling sensation and when i do i comb where i felt it and nothing comes out. so i don't know if its just me or if i still have lice please help me so i can make sure i don't get the problem again

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Hi, the active ingredient in RID is pyrethrin and lice are becoming resistant to this pesticide, so there's a chance you never fully got rid of the problem. However, don't panic because you are dealing with it now. If you are thoroughly combing through your hair (and I suspect you are), I would trust what you see in the comb. Did you get the metal comb that comes with RID? It should be able to get out bugs, so if you have been combing and combing and are still finding nothing, then I think you have probably dealt with your head lice problem. The tickling and itching feelings can continue because it will take time for your bites to heal and also because you are now hypersensitve to what you feel on your scalp. I would still do thorough combings until you have had 2 weeks where you have not combed out any lice or nits. Remember, put all your energy on your scalp and not on any extra cleaning. Good luck.

Monica said...

Hi! I just found lice in my 2year olds 4 inch hair and i couldnt help but just shave it all off. He only had nits that i saw but its all i could do in the moment. I went to get my hair checked and they found one bug. Then i checked my 7yr old sons 1/2 inch hair and found one live bug and no nits. I have been combing my hair like crazy. i go through my whole head every hour and cant find anything. The first time i found about 10 nits but no live lice. I cut my hair shoulder length and bought Nix and lice spray for the couches and beds. I washed all linens and blankets. But i dont understand why im not finding anything in my hair. How can i have only a few nits and one lice? ive been oiling up my hair with tea tree oil and coconut oil hoping they dont come back. Am i missing something? When I got checked by a professional they said even though i buzzed cut my sons hair i need to pass a razor to guarantee they are really gone. Should i pass a razor on my 2yr olds scalp?

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Monica,
If you've already given your son a buzz cut, I don't think you need to razor your son's scalp so that he is completely bald. While lice can still live on hair that is very short, they are much easier to see and I think you will be able to detect any new activity very quickly on both your 2 year old and your 7 year old. Remember, lice are small but not microscopic. If you see something on their heads, just remove it.

As for your head, make sure you are using a good metal lice comb, and not just the comb that comes in the Nix package. Combs like the Licemeister and the Nit Free Terminator are far superior to the combs that come with the "treatments". Combing while your hair is wet and conditioned has a 4X greater chance of lice detection, so make sure you are doing this - read posts on this blog about wet combing. Keep combing thoroughly every couple of days until you have had 2 weeks with no sightings of nits or bugs.
Please don't waste your time or money on lice sprays or doing mountains of laundry. These are simply not effective and won't change your situation at all. Put all of your energy on the head - and even then, one really good combing is enough for one day.

You can outrun this problem over time. Get a good comb and keep combing.

Anonymous said...

Help!! My Daughter & Myself Seem To Keep Passing The Bugs Back & Forth Even With Washing All Of Our Clothes In Hot Water Every Lice Pesticide & Home Remedy There Is ...I Don't Wanna Shave Our Heads But Im Seriously On The Verge! HELP!! :'(

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Ok, I understand your panic, but don't shave your heads (unless you like the style!) DO NOT spray your furniture - this has absolutely no effectiveness. Don't do extra laundry. Don't buy any more lice "shampoos" - you've obviously tried them already and know their effectiveness.

Do you have a good metal lice comb? Because you are going to need it. This is where you need to put ALL of your energy - combing, picking, and blowdrying the head (as mentioned in the above blog post).

I know that you feel you have been dealing with head lice for a long time, but if you haven't been combing with a good metal lice comb, your chances of getting rid of lice have been small. With a good comb, you can deal with your own head lice. But you have to be thorough. Detangle and condition the hair. Leaving in the conditioner, you comb and comb and comb until you can comb through your head 100 times without finding an egg or a bug. (Wipe the comb off on a piece of toilet paper or paper towel between strokes and then look on the paper for lice/nits.) Then do that every couple of days until you've had two weeks with no lice/nit sightings.
I know we all want a magic pill or a quick fix to deal with this problem. However, combatting lice takes time. As I've said in many posts, it's a marathon, not a sprint. There are things worse than head lice - losing sleep, stressing out, missing work and school, withdrawing from life. Take back your life - give your lice the attention they deserve, but don't give them one second more. If you've done your thorough combing for today, then don't think about the lice again until tomorrow. Good luck.

Anonymous said...

So relieved I found this blog! Both my 5 year old daughter and 6 year old son got lice. I'm assuming from school? Anyways. Got the Rid treatment and spent hours picking nits out of their hair. Next day found a live louse crawling in my daughters hair! You had said rid was no longer effective, guess I can see that. You also said it had bad side effects? What are they? Cause I feel horrible cause when I saw the live bug in my daughters hair I did the treatment again! I wish I would have saw this blog first! I hope I didn't do any harm to her!

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Ok, let's talk about products such as RID. Such treatments can act as irritants - some people develop a a burning feeling. I know someone who is allergic to pyrethrins and got a bad rash after applying a similar treatment to RID.

That said, these reactions are rare and if these products really worked, I would probably approve of them. However, as the lice have adapted, their effectiveness is limited and the problem continues. These products recommend combing out all nits and lice - which is what really solves the problem. So I say skip the middle man, stop wasting money on unnecessary and ineffective shampoos, and do regular, extensive wet combing with a good metal lice comb. Did your RID kit come with a metal comb? This is probably a better tool in the fight than the "shampoo" will ever be. All the best and keep up the good work.

Anonymous said...

Your blog has been super helpful -- thank you! I found lice on myself exactly a week ago, I did the RID :( combed for two hours that day and found only 2 dead bugs and a dozen or less nits. Since then I have purchased the terminator comb, have been combing twice a day (although not as thoroughly the 2nd time) and doing the hair dryer. I have not found any live bugs (only 2) or nits (only 2-3) in two days. BUT, I have found an empty egg case or two each time I comb......am I missing ones that are hatching, or did I just miss these shells in my combing? I have very long hair that takes forever to get through, and I may be missing some spots....I have been diligently running laundry, etc. My 2yr old and husband have so far remained lice-less. Am I getting ahead of it? Thanks!!

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

If you are doing thorough wet combing with the Nit Free Terminator, I'm sure you are dealing with the lice. It is not uncommon to continue to comb out nits for days - the main thing is that you are getting them. Whenever you comb out a new nit or bug, don't feel discouraged, feel empowered - you are getting them!

My general rule is that you comb on a regular basis (every 2-3 days) for two weeks starting from the first day you combed and found nothing. Are you wet combing your two year old and husband? Continue to check their heads until you are sure you have it beat. Don't worry about the laundry - it is a waste of time in the fight against head lice. That means that you don't have to wash your clothes or bedding any more than you usually would. Lice thrive on the scalp, not the mattress.
Good luck!

Anonymous said...

Hi,
So i found out my best friend had lice recently. checked last week and didn't have it. but now i do.I can absolutely NOT tell my mother. I had it a few years ago and she freaks out . She even made me sleep in a tent one night. yeah ...bad i know.. I have been combing through my hair and i put olive oil in it(overnight) and Tea tree oil. I washed all of my things with a dash of Tea tree oil also. Is there anything else i can do? I need a quick fix because i am going on a school trip in 2 weeks!! HELP!!

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Ok,so you have found head lice. You say you have been combing. With what comb? If you have been combing with a good metal comb such as the Licemeister or the Nit-Free Terminator or even a similar comb with rigid, long metal teeth, then you are on the right track. Don't worry about washing bedding or clothing but DO keep on combing. Do the wet combing with conditioned hair, combing from root to tip. Keep combing until you have combed 100 times in total without finding an egg or a bug. You only have to comb once per combing day and you can comb every second day. You can comb while you are in the shower so as not to raise suspicions. Your hair dryer can help you as well (see posts about this on the blog.) Comb every couple of days until you have had two weeks without any sightings. I am assuming that you are not completely full of lice as you didn't see anything last week. You should be able to outrun it simply by continuing to remove the lice as they hatch through combing and you will catch them before they can lay new eggs. If you keep doing this (stick with it!), you should have no problem going on your school trip in two weeks.
That said, if lice have been in your home, how do you know your mother doesn't have it? Watch for any scratching that she might do. If she or anyone else in the home has head lice, you should probably come clean and help them in getting rid of it. Good luck.

leah said...

I randomly found 4 live bugs in my daughter's hair one day when I was just combing as I normally do every day. They were just sitting on top of her head, easy to take out, and I have not found any definite nits and certainly nothing live since then. Is there a chance this could have been some random other kind of bug? I don't understand how there could be more than one live one without a more significant problem or at least some nits (I am good at finding them). I don't want to do all this combing & work if they weren't really lice, but my husband says they must be. What do you think??

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Leah, what did the bugs look like? I don't know of any bugs that would just want to be hanging out on the head. In the summer time, after a day outside, it is not unusual for a child to have a bug in the hair, but the bug would just get stuck in the hair and would rather not be there. Four bugs of the same kind? At this time of year? I'm guessing head lice. Take a look at the picutres of lice on this blog (or on the Net) to see if that's what you encountered. (If your bugs had wings, then they were not lice.)

How did you check for other bugs or nits? Did you just go through with your fingers or did you do a wet combing. A wet combing with a regular comb can still remove some adult bugs. A wet combing with a good metal lice comb has a 4X greater chance of detecting something. Though going through the scalp with your fingers can often show you some signs of a problem, it is way too easy to miss something and isn't the most reliable way to check.

I don't want you to have to do more work than you need to, but I still would put a bit more time into investigating this. You say you are really good at finding nits but you don't seem to know exactly what you saw. Hmm. If I were you, I would still do some regular combings for a couple of weeks. If it is lice, you probably don't have a big problem so better to do a bit of work now to nip this in the bud. (And remember, just focus on doing thorough combing - no extra housework or laundering required!) Good luck!

leah said...

Thanks for the input. Yes, I'm going to go ahead with the assumption that the 4 bugs were lice (I guess I was just in denial) and comb, etc. appropriately. I just thought it was so weird to have only those and nothing else, plus no other sign of anything, living or dead or eggs, on anyone else in the household (I have 3 girls and a husband).

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Sorry that you have head lice but glad you are willing to do the combing that is needed to get rid of it.

Head lice ARE strange. It is possible for only one person in the house to have it. I've seen families where everyone in the house repeatly gets head lice with the exception of one family maemeber - there are some people that seem to have a natural defense against head lice and don't get it even when everyone around the does.

That said, I would still do a good wet combing on everyone in the household (including yourself) with a proper lice comb. If someone hasn't had head lice before, it can take 3 months of having it before they even notice it.

All the best.

leah said...

What I found while doing the proper combing on my daughter's head was something that looked as if someone had sprinkled teeny, tiny grains of dirt or sand on her head. You could hardly see them and they are brown/black and mostly on the scalp. It just looks like tiny specks of dirt. Is this a "baby" louse stage? They don't look like the typical white eggs stuck on the hair or like the live (moving) bugs I found the first time.

Anonymous said...

I keep finding nits in daughters hair. I pull them off everyday. I find about 10 nits everyday. I find no bug. What am I doing wrong?

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

First, I have to ask the obvious question. How do you know they are nits? I'm sure you know what you are looking for, but here's a recap. Nits are always the same shape and size. Their colour may seem to vary based on the colour of hair. If you flick them, they will not move - to remove them they need to be scraped off the hair. The adhesive that glues the egg to the hair is so strong that when you remove the egg, if you look closely, you will see a little "tail" at one end of the nit which is really a tiny part of the hair shaft that ripped off. Does your child have dandruff? Some dandruff can be very sticky and may need to be scraped off the hair, but dandruff varies in shape and size. If your child has dandruff, I would recommend a good washing with a dandruff shampoo* before doing a thorough lice check(*Read the label or consult with a pharmacist regarding which product is right for your child.)

Assuming that you really are finding nits, I must ask, are you combing? Nits can often be easier to find than the bugs. The louse can move very quickly on the head and will run from light. A head check with your fingers may not reveal the bugs. A good wet combing should and is so much more effective at detecting and removing head lice than just using your nimble fingers. When lice are wet, they stop moving (or slow down a lot) which makes them easier to find. I would recommend getting a good metal lice comb (see this blog for suggestions), detangling/wetting/saturating the hair with conditioner, and starting combing. Give the comb a good wipe on a piece of paper towel or toilet paper in between strokes and check the paper and the comb for nits or lice.

Where there's smoke, there's fire and where there are nits, there are almost always bugs. Keep checking.

Kesha Hill said...

Hello, I am African American and my 5year old got head lice from school. I have found it very difficult to use the combing method because of her natural hair is very kinky and curly when wet. It just seems to pull out the hair and it is painful for her. Myself and my 2 year old also have lice now. I used the shampoo I used lots of hair grease I see a few nits but they fall off easily. There is not much info on lice and African American hair. What do you recommend? I do not see live lice just a few tiny nits. How often should I wash bedding? What color are live lice?

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Hi! Check out the new blog post for my answer.

alicia said...

Hi, I have had lice off and on for a year now and and they keep coming back!!! I dont have a buddy, my mom won't help and neither will my boyfriend. I keep combing and I don't find bugs anymore but I can see the comb go right past the nits and not even pick them up!!!!! Everyone is so angry that I haven't taken care of the problems but they don't seem to understand I can't do it all by myself... I feel so hopeless I have cried for hours about it and don't know what to do, is there any way for me to get them completely out by myself I would rather not shave my head sense I am a bigger girl and that wouldn't look to good lol... PLEASE HELP I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO DO ):

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Alicia,
Oh my dear, that sounds so frustrating. I hate when people think you have done nothing - they do not understand the resilience of head lice. Looking over what you have written, I have a few questions for you.

I know this is going to sound stupid, but I have to ask, are you sure that what you have in your hair is nits? I only ask because you keep combing and find no bugs. Read more about nits on this blog.

Ok, assuming you have nits, here’s my next question - where are the nits? Lice lay their eggs less than a 1/4 inch away from the scalp (unless you live in a hot tropical country where the temperature and humidity allow them to venture further down the hair shaft). If you see new eggs right near the scalp, then I would suspect an active case of head lice. If the eggs are farther away, then you don't have an active case, you are just dealing with old dead eggs and egg casings. Either way, it's not pretty.

Do you have a really good lice comb? Combs like the Licemeister or the Nit Free Terminator are proper, while the plastic combs that come in lice kits are not. Your comb should have rigid metal teeth that are no more than 0.3 mm apart. Good combs will be able to get out most nits and nymphs (tiny teenage lice).

How are you using your comb? You should be doing wet combing with conditioner as outlined on this blog. It makes a world of difference.

How often are you combing? You should be doing a good combing every couple of days until you have had 2 weeks with no new sightings of nits or lice. You can't just do a couple of days of combing or comb once in a while. You have to keep combing through the lice life cycle to ensure that your catching any new hatchlings. Pull out any old ugly egg shells as you find them (there is no risk if they stay in the hair, but they make people think you have an active case of head lice.)

If you comb for two weeks and have no new eggs or lice, then you can relax - a bit. The fact is, you may have had more than one case of head lice over the last year. You may have dealt with your head lice problem and then got them again from another source. After you have done the 2+weeks of regular combing and have determined that you don't have an active case, you should still do a lice check (via combing) on a regular basis.
As you have probably read on this blog, you should not waste your time on extra cleaning or laundering. Just keep on giving your head the attention it needs using proper tools and I know you can beat this.
Good luck.

Anonymous said...

Hey. I just got rid (atleast i think i did) of my lice using nix and the lice/nitt comb about 2 or 3 days ago. Then today i felt really paranoid so i washed my hair and did the blow dryer thing you said and afterwards i flat ironed my hair in hopes of killing any eggs that might still be in there. I hate any type of bugs, it is my number one fear and sometimes i still feel a little bit of crawling and i feel like my head itches but it really doesn't . Do you think i have to do another treatment or am I just paranoid. I do admit I get paranoid easily and I'm really hoping that is the case ! Also, sometimes i feel like something is crawling on my body, like on my side or my arm. help please !

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

To the most recent Anonymous,

Paranoia is the worst thing about having head lice. It keeps us up at night. Makes us do crazy things. It happens to the best of us. (I still scratch my head when I talk about head lice!)If you just had an active case of head lice, your head will itch for a while (think of how long a mosquito bite itches!) Still, you should keep checking things out on a regular basis.

Please trade in the paranoia for information. Read the posts on this blog (especially the one that says NOT to use a flat iron in the fight against head lice.) Get a good lice comb and comb your hair every couple of days until you've had 2 weeks with no new eggs or bugs. The articles on this blog can walk you through it.

You shouldn't try to deal with head lice by being hyper vigilant and super-paranoid-non-stop-busy for a few days. It will give you a false sense of security. Instead, do a little bit of work every couple of days for a few weeks. You'll have better success.

Anonymous said...

Hello, please help! My 6 year old daughter got lice at school. I used nix and combed for about 5 hours, 3 days later I find more nits and one active louse about the size of a nit. I actually thought it was a nit until I saw it moving with a magnifying glass I was using. I combed and combed some more! I keep checking my head (myself don't have anyone to help) and I haven't found anything on my own head. Thing is, she sleeps in the bed with me. Just me and her in a king size bed. Is it possible even with sleeping in the same bed that I don't have it? Or am I missing something on my own head and gave it back to her? I also don't have a washer or dryer and have to go to the laundry mat. I took all of the bed stuff to the laundry mat the next day after I found her first case, but now I seen more on her (and possibly have it myself) should I go back to the laundry mat? Or do they really not get in bedding Ike everyone claims? PLEASE HELP! I also should add..I am 7 weeks pregnant and literally so stressed out. Thanks and God Bless

Anonymous said...

Hi. I'm 17 and a couple of weeks ago I was feeling itchy and i had my mom look at my hair and she found a couple nits and one bug and she looked more and found nothing so she said she wasn't going to do anything else because she didn't think I had anything. She had me tell my girlfriend because she's the only person I've been with. Anyway my girlfriend's mom checked her hair and all her sister's and found nothing.

Two days ago my girlfriend was at my house staying the night and combed her hair and found a bug. I looked through her hair and picked out all the nits I could find. Later she combed out another bug. She looked at my hair and find three nits but no bug. I have a plastic RID comb, will this get rid of my lice if I keep using it?

I can't tell my mom because she won't let me see her or anyone else for god knows how long. And don't get me started on how my dad would react.

I also haven't been with any of family to give it to them. When my mom checked me I checked her and we checked my sister and they were lice and nit free.

My girlfriend can look through my hair but I really want to know how effective the plastic comb is because I keep combing and I'm not getting anything but I feel itchy. Not like irritation, I feel crawling. I still haven't found a bug yet. I'm a Cosmetology student and school is starting soon. I really don't want one of the students to find anything or give lice to anyone.

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

The plastic RID comb will get our large lice, but may not get out the nymphs or the nits. I would recommend a metal lice comb like the Licemeister or the Nit Free Terminator. As you have seen on this blog, it is best to comb through wet, conditioned hair - there is a much greater chance of detection. Both you and your girlfriend should be combing every couple of days until you have had two full weeks without seeing any new nits or bugs. If you do thorough combings, you will get out all growing bugs before they become adult egg layers. The louse will not venture off of the head until it is mature, so your lice problem will not spread to others during this time. But you have to keep on wet combing. Read this blog for other techniques such as using a hair dryer in the fight. Good luck.

Becky said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Becki - sorry, I accidently deleted your comment! Oops. Here it is along with my response...

Hi Cathy,
I just found your blog and have some questions.

I found lice on my 6 and 7 year olds about 10 days ago. I freaked out and ran to the pharmacy, got what the pharmacist recommended (Nix) and treated both kids, and myself, even though my husband could not find anything in my hair.

I combed and picked out a bunch of bugs from my daughter's hair and a few from my sons. I didn't really know what I was looking for at the time, or what I needed to do next. I never really looked to see how many nits were combed out initially.

The next day I checked heads briefly, but didn't do any combing. I found a couple of moving bugs, but slow moving.

The next day when I realized that I needed to comb through and pick out all of the nits, I started this process and must have spent close to 6 hours picking tons of nits out of my daughter's hair. Then a couple more hours on my son.

Since then I have done 3 natural treatments and have gone through their heads, every day, with a fine tooth comb, picking out the nits mostly by hand. I have found it easier to see and pull out the nits from their dry hair.

I have not seen any live bugs in a week and today was the first day that I found no nits. Each day I have been finding less and less.

My question is how and when do I know for sure that they are gone? I am feeling good, but still paranoid that I have missed something.

Do I still need to check heads everyday? For how long?

I have been vigilant and don't plan to start slacking now, but I have run myself down from little sleep and major stress.

Any advice would greatly help!

Thanks!

And here's my response...

First, please stop doing 6 hour marathons. And do NOT do any extra cleaning. Please read different blog posts.

It is often easier for some people to see nits when they are dry, but a proper metal lice comb used in wet combing will get out many, many more nits than when you pick with your fingers. Also, lice stop moving (or slow down considerably) when wet and with conditioner on your wet detangled hair, they comb off much more easily. While I don't endorse or use any lice "treatments", I always recommend the purchase of a good lice comb.
How long do you have to keep going? Do a combing every 2-3 days until you have had 2 weeks with no new sightings. At each combing, you can stop when you've combed through 100 times without finding a bug or an egg - but if you don't get to that point for a few days, then only comb for an hour or less. Lice shouldn't keep you from getting sleep. Please read my posts on burnout. Lack of sleep and stress and paranoia can have outcomes that are far worse than the itch of head lice. It's obvious that you are willing to put in the time but think of this as a marathon and not a sprint. Do a smaller amount of work over a longer period of time. You will beat this. Now, get some sleep! Good luck.

Jasmine said...

Hello, I found your blog when I was wondering if you can feel lice crawling in your hair. I don't know if I have lice, my friend warned me that she had them and I have been careful to avoid close head to head contact. I am worried that I am just being paranoid and that it's just a psychological itch - it only occurs occasionally. But to be safe I did attempt to have a go with a nit comb. But I don't know if I did it all that thoroughly - it's hard to do on myself and I have long hair that got tangled mid way. I also lose a lot of hair so I am reluctant to do it to myself. I think the hair loss might also be due to other factors, but all in all I don't really know what my next step should be. Thank you for your blog and your good advice.

Stacey said...

Hi there. A friend of my daughter has given us lice teo summers in a row now. This summer it seems to keep coming back!!!! I have had it come back 4 times and it is ruining my life! We have been lice free for a little over three weeks but now a girl at school in her class has it. I don't want her to go back to school because I don't eant her to get it again. Did we give it to the girl? The nurse did a lice check on the girl and found nothing 3 weeks ago but now she has it. Do you think we will get it back? It came back last time after 3 weeks nit free. I see NOTHING in our hair for over 3 weeks now but I'm so scared. How can it come back after 3 weeks anywat?

Anonymous said...

Maybe a dumb question but here is my problem with wet combing my own hair: I am not sure how to tell if its eggs, nits or just droplets of water in the comb when i hold it up and look at it in between strokes! All I can do is just keep combing and hope for the best. Very upset and discouraged right now.

Anonymous said...

ok, so I'm combing and combing but the pesky nits don't want to come out of the comb with a papertowel, or toilet paper. How do I tell if what is in between the comb are nits or residual conditioner. Those areas in between are so small that it is almost impossible to get out what is in between them.

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

For cleaning your lice comb, when wiping won't do, use dental floss or string to clean between the teeth.

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

And for anonymous who can't tell what is in the lice comb (nits or water droplets), wipe the comb or clean between the teeth with dental floss. Once it is out of the teeth, you will see what it is.

Truman's said...

Can you feel lice crawling on your scalp? I think it's just paranoia since my daughter had lice. I've been to my doctor and checked 2x with nothing but can't stop using the nit comb. I think my scalp is just hypersensitive from all of the combing. I will feel crawling but find nothing when combing wet or dry. I did find a little brown thing on my bathroom sink that was flat but looked like it could have had a little tail as described. Ugh I'm so frustrated and just can't stop with the thought of lice.

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

You can't feel head lice crawling on your head. I totally understand that feeling of crawling - I get it all the time. However, most people don't even notice that they have head lice until they've had it for as long as three months! The hair on our head moves and if we are focused on it, it can feel like something else is on our head. Never use "that crawling feeling" as an indicator of head lice. However, if you start to get an incredible itch, I would do a lice check. But remember, even the itch isn't a definite indicator! There are many reasons we can have an itchy scalp. If you've wet combed with a proper lice comb and found nothing, then I would guess that you don't have lice. And if you've combed your head many, many times and found nothing, then step away from the comb! It is time to give your scalp a break. Over-combing can actually irritate your scalp and increase the itch.

Meg said...

Hi! So I had lice a few weeks ago, and went to a lice lady where they provided heat treatment and extensive combing. I was given the instructions to continue combing for the next week. I had a friend do the combing, and there was literally no nits at all in my hair! They did such a great job! I went for a follow-up dry check and they said I was lice-free.

The problem is, the itch never totally went away, and I assumed it was at first just recovering from the bites and me just being hyperaware of every itch on my head. But it's been getting steadily worse. Now the itch is very bad and feels just as bad as it did when I went for the treatment. There is a lot of tiny white debris in my hair that doesn't come out in the shower...but it doesn't come out in my metal nit comb either! However, it does move when I brush it with my fingers. Are they nits if they aren't coming out on the comb? They could be dandruff, but when I was doing the combing before, I literally had no dandruff and now there is so much!

Also, while I was combing with the nit comb yesterday, I found a little black bug in the sink, but I don't know if it came from my here. It was black with two long feelers...is that the louse?

Anonymous said...

Someone please help me I just found out my adopted Granny had head lice and I got it from her. The last time I had head lice when I was 12 years old. My hair is really long and very thick. Please email me at Littlemisspriss28@gmail.com
P.S I don't want to cut

Anonymous said...

My daughter came home with head lice over a month ago and its been a battle. I think she and I are finally lice free but now the top of my head is painful and sore to the touch. What can I do to relieve the pain?

Elaine said...

Hi
I just found out I have head lice that night I did a treatment for it and that I've been brushing my hair with the lice brush thing n I haven't found any bugs since than but sometimes I find nits not many maybe 5 or a lil more n than sometimes I don't at all ...is that a bad or good sign? Also I have a five month old baby I don't know wat to do I don't want him to get lice so I put baby oil in his hair is that alright?
Thanks
M

Anonymous said...

I have five kids and 4 are girls with pretty long hair.we have had problems constantly especially with my 13 year old and i found a huge female in my hair last night i think she was close to death cause she was barely moving.i have no family or friends that can do my hair and a 2 year old baby that wont alow me to take the time on my hair that is needed any suggestions?thank you so much

Garry Buckley said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

I have always started itching when someone told me they had lice. Almost 2 weeks ago my daughter came to me saying she thinks she had it. I looked and to my surprise there was quite a few on her head. We went straight for the bathroom it was 10:30 at night so all my local stores were closed I took vinegar and a brush (all that I had at the moment). Poured the vinegar on her head while I pulled what I could out with my fingers. Next morning I went to the store got RID treated her head and also my sons (didn't see any on him), my head and my nieces. My niece checked mine but didn't see anything. I seen 3 live ones on strands of my nieces hair but not near the scalp. Combed my hair (still combing) a couple times a day. I have very bad dandruff and just had my hair dyed brown so the dandruff is stained from that. I pull stuff out sometimes I can't tell if they are nits or dandruff. I comb my daughters hair everyday. I still pull stuff out. I have done my husbands head haven't seen anything. Exactly 1 week from treating I seen 1 live one and 1 dead egg in my sons hair. 3 live ones on my daughter. We are currently doing the olive oil 16 hour leave on. I know I am paranoid but trying to be thorough. I read online to make sure everything is washed and swept. You say don't worry about that. I have been doing laundry and sweeping everyday. I haven't seen any live ones in 6 days. My sister says she is checking my niece as she will be coming back in a week for vacation. When can I say enough is enough and relax? I did find a local place that does in home visits is it worth the $? With it being summer this has been 2 really long weeks we have a pool and I read no swimming for at least 2 weeks. My daughter is also afraid of going to friends houses and we have no idea as to were she got them unless it was the movie theater. No one else we have been around have them.

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Hello,
When can you relax? Now. The cleaning/washing frenzy does not help and maintains your high level of paranoia. Believe me, I truly understand why head lice makes us panicked. But it is time to just stop wasting energy on things that don't work and focus on the things that do.

So, you did a treatment with a pesticide. That's fine. The reason they tell you not to go swimming for a while is because it will make the pesticide ineffective. However, the pesticides are already rather ineffective. So, in my mind, swim, swim, swim!

Another thing that keeps up the paranoia is wondering where or how your kids got head lice. There are things worse than head lice - such as keeping your family from doing the activities they love. You may never know where you got the lice from. But even if you did know, what does that change? Anyone you know could have them - it you usually take a person a long time before they realize they have head lice. Or, others that may have nits may not have an active case of head lice. So, guessing does not protect you. On a past blog post, I talked about my own children who had friends on our block who regularly had head lice (the mom did not want me to comb their heads)and they all hugged and played and I just made sure that I did weekly lice checks.

Regular combing is the thing to do - with a good comb, such as the Licemeister or the Nit Free Terminator. Comb every few days - not everyday, not marathon combings. Once you have had 2 weeks with no new sightings of nits or bugs, then you can relax...sort of. Lice checks should still happen on a regular basis.

So, breathe. You obviously are willing to put in whatever it takes to beat this. So, beat it by doing only what is effective, maintaining your sanity, and having fun with your wonderful family. Good luck.

Anonymous said...

Hi, I was wondering if it is possible to get lice threw touching someones hair? I had a client today (I do hair) and a week ago she had dead lice in her hair. Today she came back, and her mom said that they are all gone and that the school nurse said she's all clear. I was very hesitant on taking her, but my boss kinda put me on the spot in front of her so I agreed to cut her hair anyway. I made sure I pulled my hair back before bringing her back just in case. I brought her to the shampoo bowl and she still had little "dead" lice in her hair behind her ears. At this point I have already touched her hair with my bare hands, just double checking for any lice still on the hair (and I found some) I remained calm, and just grabbed her parent to let her know I was not able to proceed with her hair service, that she will have to come back once everything is out of her hair. I then grabbed all my hair tools that was around and put them in our salon disinfectant and continued to wash my hands 3 times.Is there any way I could have gotten a dead lice or something on me that might turn into real live lice? I know they say they "play dead" sometimes but idk if I should believe it or not.

Anonymous said...

Hello there.

Last Sunday my head was itching and I felt something crawl through my hair. We have a bad case of flas we are fightng right no, and I have found fleas in my hair, so I figured it was nothing to worry about.

But then on Sunday I was itching my head and I found a louse inder my nail (eeeeww!!!!! I hate bugs!) I panicked bcause I got this once in 6th grae and couln't completely get rid of it until 8th grade. I am going into 10h and our school year is starting up agin so I washed my hair with rid shampoo and dawn. I had my mom check my hair and she didn't see ANYTHING. No bugs, no nits, nothing.

But just earlier today I found ANOTHER bug crawling on my bed (eeeeeeeewwwie!!) I am freaking out because I do not have the time to be combing daily fir hours (my hair is very long and very fine). I have a metal fine tooth comb but my dad will not let me use it because it is supposedly a flea comb (but we never use it on animals). I am worried about this bcause last Sunday I took all blankets, sheet, pillows, and anything else off my bed and washed them in hot water dried them on high heat for 40 minutes I slept without pillows or blankets for three days. I sprayed my bed with RID about 5 times and vacuumed multiple times and I STILL got it???? I sprayed and vacuumed the cars, furniture, and even my brother's bed (I never go into my dad's room) because I am really freaky about this.
I do not have conditioner for my hair but my mom might have some. Btw I found the first bug right after church so idk if it came from there or what. I am really worried any help???? Thanks in advance!!!

heather said...

I just recently found lice in my 4 yr olds hair and am freaking out as I'm sure most people do. I have psoriasis in my scalp and am not sure if the itching is from the bugs (I found a bug a couple days ago in my hair AFTER having not one but TWO drs check and tell me there was nothing there). Any tips how to self check and treat someone with my issue????

heather said...

Also if it helps I have long thick hair that tangles easy even when wet

Anonymous said...

Hi there! Reading your blog has eased some of my fears considerably. My husband and I have been doing wet combing for almost a week now with the NitFree comb. After about the second time we are not really finding much in either of our daughters' hair, or in mine. My husband is EXTREMELY thorough (maybe too thorough according to your posts, as it can take as long as 3 hours to do my extremely thick, curly hair!). One thing that we are finding difficult is trying to decipher if there are actually nits in the hair. We really can't see any when we do a hair check. Looking at pics online, the pictures are so magnified it is hard to assess their actual size. And to make matters more confusing, we all have different coloured hair - one very blond, one dirty blond and me, very dark brown. We look for the teardrop shaped nits but don't really see any. And now after combing through for a week occasionally we may see a dark speck on the paper towel so small that the shape of it is indistinguisable. Are the nits usually that difficult to see? We both have good vision and have even used a small magnifier used for reading. The first comb through got out live lice but we have not found any since. And once again to check, we should continue doing the comb outs at least for another 2 weeks? Should my husband not be taking as long when combing? (about 2 hours/person?)

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

I wouldn't worry too much about finding nits. Worry more about finding lice. Eggs, whether you know what they look like or not, can be easily missed. If they are viable, they will hatch and if you are doing regular combing, you will catch the lice before they lay more eggs. You will simply outrun the cycle if you do thorough combing every few days and if you have had 2 weeks with no new sightings, then I would assume that you are all right. However, remember that head lice can come from a variety of heads that we hang out with. We can deal with one problem and then another can start from a completely different source. I would encourage you and everyone in your household to do occasional lice combings - routine checks before any itching or sightings happen.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for bringing perspective.it is certainly hard to have ANY when dealing with these critters. The whole family did the nix treatment and for the last 8 days I have used a combination of olive oil/tea tree oil (hopefully this has the same effect as conditioner? ) and then a comb through. After 8 days the combs are finally clear. Should I continue to do the olive oil or should I switch to conditioner? Also should I continue to do every day or every 3rd day? Thank you so much!

Anonymous said...

I started scratching a month ago but I had 5 people check me and said they saw nothing then this friday I felt something in my hair and pulled out a lice. So I'm suffering ! I did two rid treatments and still found living ones , so I went to the doctor and they prescribed Permethrin 5% . Ive had it on under a shower cap for 9 hours so far , they told me 12 so getting close. I'm so scared they will still be living :(.. I have a busy month with things planned that I feel I have to cancel. I hate this .

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Permethrin at that concentration is generally used for scabies and not lice. Permethrin is the synthetic version of pyrethrin, the active ingredient in RID (though RID has it at a much smaller concentration than what you are using now.) If you used RID twice and it didn't work (which it common because studies have shown that lice are resistant to these neurotoxins), then there is always a chance that they might be resistant to it with the new cream you were given. Does your pharmacist know that you were given this for lice and not for scabies? I encourage you to get a second medical opinion.

If you read this blog, you know that I never recommend any cream/shampoo/treatments for head lice - especially not permethrin because of its proven ineffectiveness. Please get a good lice come and comb out your head lice. If 5 people have looked at your head and didn't see anything, you can be fairly confident that this situation has not gone out of control. I encourage you to get a lice comb and follow the wet combing tips on this blog. If you had tried this from the start, in small chunks of time over many days, you could probably have beaten it in fewer than the 12 hours you were told to keep the permethrin on your head.
Good luck.

Anonymous said...

Im 16 and have had Head lice on and off for years, they just won't go away! My mum isn't helping me and my boyfriends mum is saying that I'm not trying to treat it ( when I am) and threating to not let me in their house!
I have such a heavy infestation that I am starting to lose sleep from it, this is the worse my hair has ever been, help please :(

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

I am so sorry that you have been dealing with this for so long. How frustrating - especially when you don't feel you have any support. You say you have been treating it - how have you been treating it? If you have been just using so-called shampoos, you already know they are not enough. You need to get the lice off the head. Wet combing is a great way to do this. If you can, get a good metal lice comb with long rigid teeth close together. It will really help in getting out the nits. And this is probably a big part of the problem - even if you get out the lice, the nits make it look like you still have them. Though you can deal with this yourself with a good comb, having a buddy to help you can really see where the egg shells are which is a help when your hair is riddled with them. Do you think your boyfriend would be interested in helping with this? He could help you with wet combing, combing and combing until the eggs and egg shells are gone too. If you want the lice to be gone for good (at least this batch of them), make sure you do regular combings every few days until you have 2 weeks of combing where you found no lice. Also, read articles on this blog to see how a hair dryer can also help you.
If you have had headlice for so long, do you think your mom might have it as well? Please encourage her to give her hair a wet combing. Maybe you can help her and that may make her more willing to help you. And of course, if you have been hugging your boyfriend, he should be checked too. Good luck.

Anonymous said...

Hi there,
I think I've finally beat the lice that's infected me, DH & my two girls. I think... I need to know what in actual size lice look like. Every time I comb, wet or dry there are teeny tiny little brown things that only show up in the bowl of water. Are they lice, or just like dirt or something? Every picture on the internet is a closeup, I need to see the real deal. Any suggestions?

Anonymous said...

Hi there,
I think I've finally beat the lice that's infected me, DH & my two girls. I think... I need to know what in actual size lice look like. Every time I comb, wet or dry there are teeny tiny little brown things (like only one or two) that only show up in the bowl of water. Are they lice, or just like dirt or something? Every picture on the internet is a closeup, I need to see the real deal. Any suggestions?

Anonymous said...

Hi. I have a very confusing situation. I have 3 daughters 8, 6, and 10 months old. My 2 oldest have head lice which I already treated but they have a massive amount of nits (white). I ordered the Nit free terminator comb for them. Anyway I take big precaution around them because I don't want to get infested I also tell them to not get near the baby until they're 100 percent clear. At the end the baby got infested evetually she infested me. Today I got rid of her little infestation, I found nymphs and a few eggs and 1 adult. I think she infested me on Wednesday cause that's when I started itching causing a mild rash on the back of my neck. Finally after I put her to sleep I decided to take a shower, wash my hair when I got out I grabbed a brand new lice comb and checked myself. I found exactly 10 yellow nits right where I do my ponytail but found no lice whatsoever. I combed for and hour and found nothing else. And to add to my issue my hair is curly, frizzy and in layers... my hair was drying so fast I had to keep wetting it, it was horrible. Anyway my question is... is it posibble to just have nits and no lice and if so what happened to the lice that laid the eggs? Thanks in advanced.

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Hi there. If you had nits, you at one time had lice. Perhaps the louse died and fell off? Perhaps there are more lice on your head. If you are certain that what was on your head was nits, then you should comb every few days until 2 weeks have passed with no sightings. Read a few more posts on this blog for more encouragement and tips.

Hair does dry quickly when combing. That's why you should comb your wet hair with the conditioner still in it. Not only does conditioner make combing easier and loosen nits, it also keeps hair damp longer. And it makes combing easier in thick, curly hair.
However, even hair saturated in conditioner will dry if you comb long enough. Have a water spray bottle on hand for when your hair is getting dry and apply more conditioner as needed as well.
Good luck!

Anonymous said...

Thank you,
I just did another inspection with conditioner and also had my husband look for 2 hours... we've just finished. He found nothing not even nits. The nits that I extracted earlier had the shape of droplets and if not mistaken they had like a black dot in the middle. ... I did feel some crawl like feeling about a week ago but brushed it off as "its all in my head" seems it was all ON my head. I will keep checking the baby and myself as for my older daughters I'm going to keep combing until they're clear. I can't wait until I get that comb on Wednesday. Thanks a bunch.

Danielle Henry said...

My 3 year old daughter received the wonderful gift of lice at preschool. Passed it to me but mild case. No bugs in my hair thankfully just nits which I've been wet combing twice a day and wet combing hers with a good metal comb. Killed all live ones on her Sunday with Licemd and also treated myself and husband. A couple of questions: I know I will have to wet comb daily for next two weeks but should Licemd be repeared on day 7-10 as precaution? Is daily spraying of tea tree oil mixture effective as a deterrant? Gel? Hairspray? Keeping hair up in braid, ponytail? And do I need to wash daily anything that has touched the hair even if there are no live lice just a couple of nits? She was sent home from school today because they found 1 nit. Showered and combed her again and found nothing. Thanks for your help!

Anonymous said...

Hi, I am a college student living on my own who is currently dealing with a presumed case of lice.

A few weeks ago I purchased an over the counter insecticide that came with a nit comb. After running the insecticide I combed my head and found what I firmly believe were nits but no actual living lice.

A few weeks later the problem still ensued so I set up an appointment with a physician. The morning of my appointment I decided to dry comb my head for lice and nits. I found a lot of nits but again no lice.

Later at the doctors office, I explained my problem to the physician. He checked a small section of the back of my head for lice and nits. He claimed that I didn't have lice at all and that i had a small case of Folliculitis caused by shampoo or conditioner.
I left feeling uncertain because I hadn't explained to him that I had combed my head and found nits that morning.

After finding this page I decided to do a wet comb. After about a half an hour of combing I'm still finding nits but no living lice. My head still gets strong points of itchiness and I feel like there's bugs crawling in the areas that feel itchy. Im about 99.99% sure I have lice and would love to hear your input.

Thanks

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Nits but no lice, even after a lice comb? Hmm...

If your doctor has any real experience with head lice, I would trust what your doctor says, though I have seen doctors misdiagnose head lice. Sometimes public health nurses have more experience with head lice, so you might want to get a second opinion.

However, wet combing is very effective at detecting if you have an active case of head lice. Even a not-so-effective plastic lice comb will usually detect adult bugs during a wet combing.

Have you had head lice before? Where you actually saw bugs and nits? If so, then you probably do know what you are looking at now. If you haven't, then I would question what you are seeing. I'm not there so I can't say for sure, but I think that there is a chance you do not have head lice.

But what if I'm wrong? Here are some things I do know. First, if in fact what you are finding is nits, you can at least be comforted by the fact that you don't have a bad case of head lice now. It sounds like you have combed and combed and combed and found nothing. If you really had a bad problem, some lice would have been found. If you are absolutely positive that you have head lice, just do a wet combing every few days - read the posts on this blog for tips.

I would recommend, however, that you use a good dandruff shampoo before you do your next combing (or, if your doctor gave you some suggestions, follow them). Entertain the possibility that the doctor might actually know what he's talking about and try his suggestions as well.

I believe you when you say that your head is really itchy. Treatments and washing and dandruff can really irritate the scalp and cause itchiness. On a post on this blog, I tell a story of a woman I saw who didn't have lice even though she insisted she did. I was her third opinion - she had already been told by a doctor and another lice removal professional that she didn't have head lice. She didn't believe any of us. Instead, she believed the itch and unfortunately she spent a ton of money and a ton of time on products and services that were not necessary - and they probably made her more itchy!

Here's my advice. If you feel absolutely certain you have head lice, wet comb every 4 days until you have had 2 weeks of no sightings. In between those combings, give your scalp a rest! Don't do anything to your head beyond your regular washing and brushing. Don't buy any more products or use any more treatments until you have a live bug in your comb. And even then, if you do find one, still don't buy anything. Just keep wet combing every few days until you have had 2 weeks with no new sightings.

Don't trust the itch. A head can itch for many reasons - In fact I'm scratching my head while I'm sitting here writing about lice. Trust what you see in the comb during a wet combing. If, after some time has passed you feel like you don't have lice but you still have the itch, talk to your doctor again.

Good luck!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the quick response.

I had lice once when I was in middle school and my symptoms feel the same. Back then, my parents were the ones dealing with the combing and nit removal, so I am not experienced in that.

What I've found in the nit comb are a variety of particles. Some are very small which I assumed were dandruff or dead skin. The others were larger strawberry seed sized particles that are translucent and greyish tan in color. These are what I'm assuming are the nits.

If I was to find an actual louse what would it look like in comparison to these? Would it be moving? Or would it be similar in size and color to things I'm finding in my head? I've read a lot of the articles and words you've posted here so sorry If the info is already there.

Thanks again for your help.

Anonymous said...

My daughter's have lice and I have for about a month been trying to get rid of them.I think part of my problem is I wasn't doing enough combing, I expected the nix solution to fix it. It has been very frustrating,I have found out resently their school knew they were having big problems with this, but refused to approach the parents with it. I'm writing to say thank you for making me feel better about the fact it's not the end of the world and I can get through this.

Rachel said...

Hey Cathy,
I'm fifteen and I had head lice for the first time several months ago. My mom and I got one of those shampoo treatment kits and she helped me comb through my hair. Needless to say it was a pain (literally and figuratively) and not something I'd like to repeat. We checked again about a week later and repeated the treatment, and I've been fine ever since. But recently I've been finding little specks in my hair that I thought were dandruff, but after consulting the internet I'm pretty sure are nits. There's only a few (so far) and I haven't found any bugs yet. I have a school musical coming up and I'd really like to get rid of this as quickly as possible. Thanks for your help, and if you've got any other advice for getting as many eggs out as possible, I'm all ears!

Anonymous said...

My daughter has gotten lice twice this year. She's in kindergarten. No one else in the family has gotten it so I really feel like she's getting them at school. Now that schools don't follow the no nit policy anymore, how can I prevent this from recurring over and over again? I have read that they don't check kids heads anymore and don't send kids home if lice or nits are found. They also don't send a lice note home to parents.
I have bought the tree tea shampoo, conditioner and spray but I know their effectiveness is questionable. Is there anything you recommend to prevent reoccurrence? Thank you!

Jessica said...

Hi Cathy,

I realized my daughter had lice last Wednesday. I quickly went out to the drugstore and purchased Nix and treated her. I have been combing her hair every day since (she did not have many nits), and her head looks nit and lice free. Yesterday, when I was combing her hair I found 4 live nymphs. They were so tiny I had to really look to see what they were (almost transparent), and had to keep staring at them to determine that they were indeed alive. What did I do wrong? What should I do moving forward from this setback?

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Jessica, you move forward from this setback by realizing that it is not a setback at all. Finding those nymphs was a victory.

If you have read any of the research links on this blog, then you now know that Nix is not really effective. However, combing is. When I was doing lice combing in the home, I always offered a free follow up appointment because a few eggs can be easily missed. I'm very skeptical of people that say they can always get rid of lice in one sitting. The rule is, you keep on wet combing every 2-3 days until you have had 2 weeks with no sightings. If any eggs get missed, you will catch them as they hatch but before they can lay new eggs - just like you have already found with those nymphs. You will outrun the head lice life cycle on your daughter's head. In the mean time, keep living life as usual. Don't restrict your child's activities because of head lice. Do your normal weekly home cleaning routine - don't waste your time doing extra vacuuming or laundry. I am so glad you found those nymphs. It means you are doing what you need to be doing - you are getting the bugs off her head. Keep going. Well done!

Allison Isaacs said...

I have lice and I have to get rid of it myself, it's very hard and like you I dont want to use the special shampoos for head lice treatment. I've only seen a few live lice and got rid of them but I keep seeing lots of nits I have a fine toothed comb its plastic so I know it's not a good one I want to get a good metal live comb but I don't knkw where to get one do you know any places that will have them? also do you have have tips on getting lice out on my own I've read a out using olive oil or orange juice or tea tree oil do those work if yes how? thanks

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Hi Allison,
Don't panic - even with a plastic fine toothed comb you can get out the adult bugs. With regular combings you will be able to comb them out before they lay more eggs. If you keep doing this as new eggs hatch, you can outrun the cycle.
The only product that I find truly helpful to use in the hair is cheap hair conditioner to assist with combing and to assist in loosening the nits (see the post about this with a research link).
If you are worried that you can't get the nits out, read the posts on this blog about using a hair dryer on medium heat on a fast speed. In one study, air from a regular blow dryer on dry hair with air directed at individual sections of hair dried out 98% of the nits. Please check out the posts on this for the research link. This may not remove the nits, but it should render them unviable.
I know it is troublesome to do this on your own, but it can be done and it sounds like you are doing it. Just try not to obsess about it and don't waste your energy on tasks that don't actually help the problem. Keep on combing - even without a metal comb, you can beat this.

Anonymous said...

The k you for this.. I haven't looked through the rest of your blog yet but so far this has been the most encouraging and helpful thing I have found in my three years of constant lice. Yes, three years. I have two kids in school and the District allows kiss with lice to stay in school. They don't call the parent, the send them back to class with a note that the parent doesn't get until After school. By then it could be spread to another person, who doesn't realize they have it for weeks, and so on. It's been a problem and it won't go away. I'm at my wits end and the only thing my pediatrician and the school nurse has told me is to shave their heads. They are girls. I can't horrify them like that. However I have extremely thick and coarse hair and have considered doing it to myself. I can live with the embarrassment. However I will try your way first, and continue to do the house cleaning anyway to ease my nerves. This is seriously controlling our lives but I am so thankful to of found you.... You at least don't sound mean and demeaning in your words like. So many others. You gave me a little hope and shined a light at the end of the tunnel. Thank you so much.

Anonymous said...

Hi Nice Lice Lady,
I came across your blog in my somewhat panicked state after a regular trip to my doctor revealed that my somewhat itching and tender scalp had nits (and probably a louse in there as well). I'm sorta still in panic mode. I'm 27 and live by myself. My parents live out of state and I'm relatively new to the area so I know next to no one.
Do you think I'd be able to do the nit combing on my own properly?
Another thing, while I was reading over your article, you say you don't need to do a crazy cleaning spree and laundry. But looking over my pillowcase and the black shirt I wore today, I can actually see a few little white dots that feel hard like sand grains. And some of them aren't attached to hair. Is that normal for the nit eggs to just fall out?
The last thing that concerns me most is wet combing. When I last had lice, about a few months ago, and did the nit combing, A LOT of hair was coming out in the comb. Maybe I was just combing too hard?
Please help! I'm so panicking right now and I can't stand it much longer.

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Hello!
I am very confident in your ability to properly address the head lice on your own. Regarding nits, nits will not fall out of your hair - if what you are seeing on your pillow is not absolutely cemented to a hair shaft, it is most definitely not a nit. However, even if a hair that had a nit attached to it came out of your head and on to the pillow, it would no longer be within the right temperature to grow as it should. And even then, if by some freak chance it still hatched, so what? The only place it would survive is on your head and you would get it off your head through regular wet combing.

Regarding the wet combing, you want a comb that has long rigid metal teeth that are tightly together. You don't just comb wet hair - you comb wet, CONDITIONED, pre-detangled hair. If you are pulling out a lot of hair, you are probably combing too hard. You don't need to pull really hard on the hair - just comb in one continuous stroke from scalp to tip.

You say your doctor only saw nits and no lice? Many health professionals misdiagnose head lice. If you comb and comb over time and find no bugs, then there is a good chance that head lice is not your problem.

We all have other particles in our hair and on our scalps. Hair shafts, hair product, clothes fluffs, dust, dirt, dandruff, whatever! We can sometimes mistake these things for lice. If you have any dandruff, you might want to use a dandruff shampoo before starting in on your lice combing.

Try to resist hyper-vigilance - focus your attention to the head but don't go overboard. Regular wet combing over time works. Read more of this blog for more ideas. You've got this!

Anonymous said...

Hi again The Nice Lice Lady,
Sorry if this is off topic a bit but I did a bit of researching and found that other people were experiencing the same thing I was. Itching (not intense but every so often) and tiny white balls (not flakes) falling out and getting stuck under fingernails. They are hard like sand grain. Exactly what I have. So now I know these are not eggs or nits. 90% of the ones I'm seeing are not attached to hair and they fall out quite easily.

The consensus I'm getting is they are called hair casts? Thats about all I found on them unfortunately. And I don't want to go back to my doctor because he didn't seem to know what it was and seemed to just 'brush it off' as lice without really checking.

Amanda Ireland said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Hello nice lady, I have had lice for a total of 9 months and can I say it is absolutely dreadful and completely embarrassing. I've never ever had lice until now and I got it the second semester of my senior year to which I am now graduated and still with head lice. When my mother first noticed the way I was itching my scalp and picking at my head she went through and find a lot of them and she reacted immediately. She bought a RID kit with a comb and used the kit twice, the first time it seemed to work pretty well, I was itch free with no lice, but after a week or so it got worse to which my mom did it again but it didn't help the second time and I don't know why. After awhile my mom used vinegar and it didn't work the first time, but the second time she has used it, it's worked pretty well. I'm not itchy AS much but still somewhat barely itchy, and I have only found a couple. I've sprayed my bed down and pillows with that lice spray and I don't know if that works. I have three sisters who had it and gave it to me, they got rid of their lice but I still have mine. Is it because I have long thick hair ??

Anonymous said...

Hi there, im at my breaking point and im really hopping you can help me. I have a 3 yr old that keeps getting lice every 9wks or so, i have been to lice specialist they did head checks and confirmed every time she's had it i buy their products do our hair, but she's 3 it's hard to make sure I get all the eggs out. if I miss some could I just be finding old eggs or do they eventually come out of her hair all on their own. I'm just not sure if she's getting it again or if its constantly old stuff but she's pretty good for 3 or 4 weeks maybe 5 not itching and scratching at nothing I check her head looks ok but I can only check for so long a quick minute.I just really need to know what you recommend. she has really thick long hair. and this is been going on for about a year year and a half and I'm really over it. Thank you and i hope you can help me.

Anonymous said...

I found a single buggie on my 8 month old daughters head and immediately had my husband check my head since I had been itching but never even considered lice. We found buggies and nits on me, my 13yr old, and my toddler as well. My question is about my baby. She doesn't have thick hair, but she does have a good amount of hair. My husband and I are debating whether or not to cut her hair all off or attempt to do a proper wet combing with an active 8 month old. Which would you suggest?

Anonymous said...

Latest treatment we did was ovide 4 days ago. Since then I haven't found any live lice but have found nits and shell casings everyday. Is this normal?

Anonymous said...

7 years with head lice. Tried absolutely every natural and chemical treatment, including olive oil and conditioner. My hair is VERY long and I have no one that can nit pick for me (had it done once by friend,but she moved away; also had professional lice consultant come for their olive oil treatment program but their peppermint sprays caused alot of open sores on my scalp.) Have tried it all, in cylcles, getting very discouraged for long periods at a time. Suggestions?

Anonymous said...

My daughter recently got lice. We used an OTC medication that seemed to get rid of the live lice but left her with lots of nit. There isn't a few. It looks like hundreds of them. To many to pick out by hand. I've tried vinegar, olive oil, conditioner with the metal comb but nothing seems to work. The nits are so small the comb does not pick them up. Any recommendations on how to get rid of them?

Anonymous said...

Recently I got he'd lice. I bought the rit cvs brand. I found the egg one night ner my right ear. Well a week later I found another at the same spot. I'm not working right now so I can't buy more med for my hair and I have anxiety. I haven't found a actual lice but only 2 eggs. I have no one to check my hea...I'm thinking of shaving my head.

Anonymous said...

I read your blog after I found a live bug after a shower, and I am sure it was a louse. But I've been wet combing and using the blowdryer for almost a week and a half but I've got nothing. Is it even possible that I don't have lice after finding the actual nymph?

Anonymous said...

I just recently found out my daughter has lice. We have taken her to a lice clinic who removed all the bugs and eggs. We have been checking every day and will do a thorough conb out again in about a day or 2 (lice clinic said to comb every 5 days until we get 2 clear comb outs). My concern is I sleep in the same bed as her. Does this mean that i will have it? The clinic checked me and said they saw no signs of it, however, lice go through a microscopic stage so there may still be a chance i could have it. Does the blow drying really help to kill the eggs? My understanding is that absolutely nothing kills the eggs except being thorough with combing them out. I have become super paranoid about it and now i am constantly itchy. The clinic said its not very often that parents get it when their kids get it as lice never leave the head willingling and they don't fall off easily. But i am now so paranoid. HELP!

Kaylyn said...

Hi! I've had lice for maybe 5-6 months and me and my mom have done three treatments of the mayonnaise home remedy and used chemicals twice on my head and my mom has combed and combed and combed my hair until we thought they were gone because the comb would still be clean after a second go over of my hair. I have checked my moms head and she checked her head (she's better at it than I am) and we found nothing in her hair. My little brother (2 years) we have treated him already so he's clean. Its just me. And my mom thinks they are gone so I rally don't want to tell her I still have it. (I checked right before I posted this) I combed through just one part of MY hair and got a bunch of nits and a baby lice bug. I would really like some advice on how to get this out myself. We have a good comb and my hair isn't too long now so I just need some advice on how to do it myself... Thank you!

Holly said...

Thank you so much for your post! My twins and I have been itching like crazy for a couple weeks and this morning I discovered lice in my hair and started freaking out internally. It is my baby's first birthday party this Saturday so I am already occupied with that and then we found the lice and that just added to my stress level. I'm not sure if you are a religious person or not but all day long I've been feeling overwhelmed and I've been praying to God to bring me come peace and calm me down from feeling so anxious. I did a Google search and happened across your blog post and after reading it I feel much calmer and like we will get through this and it isn't as big of a deal as I'm making it out to be. So THANK YOU very much!!

Anonymous said...

Both my daughter and I have been battling lice for a week now. There are No more nits or eggs (I think) but when I comb their hair with the conditioner on it and wipe on toilet paper we see very tiny black dots. Are these still lice or dirt? I get these very tiny dots out of almost every strand. Please help thanks.

Anonymous said...

Hi about 3 weeks ago, i found lice inmy daughters hair, lots. She had already complained her head was very itchy. I just thought cause of the dandruff she had and not buying her the dandruff shampoo she uses. Well as soon as i saw of how many lice she had. I was so mad, i couldnt believe it. So i ran to the pharmacy and bought the metal comb. Wet her hair put some vinegar. And started brushing her hair. Wow!! when i brushed her hair they were coming out. So i finally cleaned her hair for more than a week morning and afternoon. Well yesterday we go out and im just going thru her hair cause of the dandruff she has. and i see a nit and i keep looking and found two more. We get home she wets her hair and leave conditoner on. I comb thru and NOTHING was found. I brush her hair this morning again and NOTHING. Can you tell me why is that so?? Is there a possible chance that some nits were left there and already dead dry???? I cant understand

Tina said...

My friend called yesterday to tell me that she had found lice on her daughter. Our families had spend the previous evening together and she felt compelled to inform me that my three kids had been exposed to lice. I checked my two boys, found nothing.
I checked my daughter and found no bugs but maybe found some eggs. The procedure I followed was 1.wash hair, 2. apple cider vinegar rinse that sat on the hair for 10 minutes, 3. wash again, 4. comb through with lice comb. I combed and combed and combed, then we ate dinner, and I combed and combed more. I did not find any bugs, maybe there were some eggs. How can there be eggs with no bugs?

Spellbound said...

I think I'm going lice crazy! We found live lice on my daughter several weeks ago while we were overseas. The pharmacy recommended using a lice comb (it's different from the ones I've seen here - it has 2 rows of metal teeth) and a chemical treatment that was to be left on for 18 hours. Well, we didn't have that kind of time b/c we were getting on a plane. So we killed any lice we could see (by hand), treated her head and combed through. Left the treatment on overnight with a plastic cap and then combed again in the morning and shampooed out. My husband checked and checked and found nothing on me until about a week ago. We treated both my daughter and I again with LiceMD (dimethicone) and combed and combed. I have 3 lice combs and I start with the widest teeth (we both have long hair that tangles easily) and ended with the tightest. We have found no adult live lice on our hair since the treatment, however have been putting coconut oil or other oily (dimethicone based) hair styling product on every night with a cap and then combing combing combing in the mornings. No live lice BUT am finding extremely small gray (not moving) things or black specks. The black specks seem round in shape, but that's with the naked eye. No real itching but hard to know b/c I'm sure our scalps are irritated from all the combing etc. My question is this: are those super small gray or black spots actual lice? Could they be dead and we just missed them the past combings? This has been going on for quite a few days and I really just want to stop thinking about lice!! ;-) Thanks!!

NewDayJenn said...

"Step away from the comb!" I love your humor! LOL

MissVanelia said...

hello i purchase the rid kit but they say if u don't fine any live lice not to use it and what i wanted know is why cant i use it would it mess my hair up? i went some were and they people there said they had lice now any thing that itches my scalp make me wonder. so i figured buy a kit use it just in case but if i don't know for sure i have live ones and i don't want to mess my hair but i dream of it and the electric trimmer its looking mighty nice :( please help!!

Jessie said...

Hi im 14 years old and i just found out that i have lice. i told my parents that i probably have had head lice for 3 mouths now and they finally believe me. Because today i found one in my hair. im freaking out my mom and i have had head lice before my mom had it for 2 years!i have a rash behind my ears and on my neck. And my head has been itching since summer started. my mom says that i just have a dry scalp and i do. My mom going to the store to buy me some of that lice removal shampoo that you can get at the drugstore is that stuff ok to use on your head ive used before but i just heard that its bad for your head. My mom thinks that she has it to. Is it normal for you to feel crawling on your head cause i can feel all the time and its scary! should i vacuum and clean my sheets and pillows and stuff? I NEED HELP PLEASE!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Hello, Cathy.
Please help me. I'm certain I have lice. I've been itching for a few days maybe a week. And I've been scrubbing my hair with shampoo until yesterday my friend found what looked like a nit. It had the little tail thing and everything. I then walked to the store and bought lice treatment. I used it last night and had my friend comb through it with the plastic nit comb. She found only 2 live ones that were extremely tiny and nits. There were more nits but only probably somewhere around 10. Is it good that I haven't been finding a lot? Does that mean I caught it early and theres not that many? Or does it mean I'm just not getting them. Theyre so tiny and I have long dark hair. I'm so scared that I'm not getting them all. Please HELP. I'm a new college student and I can't afford to buy a new metal comb. So I just have the plastic one that came in the kit. My friend can help but I'm not sure how often. We have classes and things its hard. Please help me. Can I get rid of them all with just a plastic comb? How do I know if I'm getting them all? When do I stop combing? Just please help I've been crying non stop. I want them gone asap and I have no way to tell for sure when they are.

MommyT said...

We've had a lice problem that has continued to come back since Christmas of last year. My 13 yr old daughter brought it over to a sleep over and all the girls got it. ALL the girls were treated at least 2x, but I don't know HOW they were treated. Again, one of the girls popped up with it. We can't just keep the girls apart forever and everytime it happens, they blame and tease my daughter. We have combed and combed here and so far so good. It's sad that when the girls get together, they all have to check one another's hair. My daughter has long, dark, thick hair and you can easily see the eggs even if they're no alive. We have combed so much that she won't let me comb it again. I don't want to be responsible for another breakout.

Anonymous said...

Hey I have head lice I've used every lotion possible on my hair but they won't go and away noone can help me because my mum died what do I do I'm 13 years old.

Anonymous said...

Dearest Cathy, I sincerely hope that you're still reading your comments. I've found your blog though hours of obsessing about "what I think I have", head lice, of course.

What I've found first was a "family" of zebra look alike, white skinny-cylinder that WRAPS around the hair, think of it like, it's burrito-ing my hair. It can also be moved around by sliding it to the end of the hair line with a bit of an effort. After doing my intense hours of research, I might have a slight bad case of Hair Casts. But the weird thing is that on another spot around my head, I find little mini dusts specs that are just too strong to be a dandruff, and not skinny cylinder enough to be a Hair Casts. This mini dust specs are too hard to "flick" yet not strong enough to have to pinch it in between your fingernails. They seemed to have different sizes but they do kind of showing a sign of having a tail. They don't go away after combing, or washing my hair, or blow drying either. In fact, the only thing that is visible by the comb is the long skinny cylinder that I've suspected to be Hair Casts.

As I try to convinced myself that I haven't seen any lice or possible nits around my comb. I have a scab around my hair crown and the places that lice suspected to reside in, are indeed very itchy. Behind the ears, near my neck area, just above my forehead. And they sure do give the feeling of "something is crawling" in my hair.

Today was my point of desperation of buying a spray products. Seems like it was the top rated one if we search through Google. It has good reviews and ratings, but what you said, is it true? That still, almost the end of 2015, we can't believe these OTC head lice killer? I seemed to can't find main enemy when I comb, but it's there. These dusts, the nits, I think they're there. My hair is so long that possibly it's so easy for the queen to move around. I can't find the source and it's driving me crazy. I itch,I comb, nothing. What I do get is just dust particles. I am going crazy. I surely do hope you still read this messages from your lost readers who are currently being eaten by lice. Oh my.

bobtheblob said...

hey I'm in grade 8 and I just found out that I have lice I was itching my head for like a month and just thought it was my dandruff but one day I looked into the mirror and there was 2 little bugs in my hair. The day before I looked up what lice looked like because at the point I started getting paranoid so I knew that I had lice. I Haven't told my mom cause I know she'll flip cause we just moved and finished dealing with bed bugs in our old place so I would like this to stay with me and I would just like to get rid of it and right now I'm like always panicking at night then I'm checking my pillow like every second and then I feel like crying cause I have no idea what to do and I also can't buy a metal comb so I don't know what to do. So if you could please help me Thanks.

Anonymous said...

I work at a preschool and keep getting lice.I have a good metal comb and it works wonders for my girls hair. I have thick hair and can't comb my hair in small sections like my kids, without seeing on top of my head. I've heard vinegar rinses work well. Any maintenance tips for an on going problem?

Maggie May said...

Cathy, please help! I'm almost twenty and I think I might have lice again...ugh! I had when I was younger and came back from summer camp and it was such an awful experience for my mom and grandma. I do not know if I am paranoid or what I should do? I have been kept awake at night because of itching. The major spots are the lower scalp right behind my ears and top of my head. It is driving me insane. I know the treatments don't work. Looked that up. Tried smothering them too no luck either. I can't check my own head and I currently live with my fiancé and I do not want to tell him either. We live with his mom and she is the epitome of freak outs and such so I can't say anything to them. I live too far away from my parents and I am currently too broke to buy the metal comb! PLEASE HELP ME I JUST WANT TO SLEEP AND STOP ITCHING!!!!! Please

Anonymous said...

A couple of months ago, my daughter began itching her head. After a couple weeks and waking up one morning with a rash of bites on her neck and behind her ears, it was discovered she had lice. I bought RID and it definitely killed some of the lice, as I noticed them coming out while rinsing her hair. I then used the metal comb and I combed and combed and combed. I repeated the process later that night and then combed some more until I saw nothing. The next day, she got clearance from the school nurse and it was as simple as that. HOWEVER, I am sure that I contracted lice during that time. I have treated myself with RID, NIX, a prescription of permetherin and I have combed. I am exhausted! I have been more diligent in my combing the last few days and now know, from reading your information, that I need to do it for two weeks. Most of the time when I combed, I'm getting a few either eggs or nits (white oval shaped). Not many at all, but a few with each combing. However, I am having confusion concerning one thing. After doing a NIX treatment a few nights ago, I was using the metal comb and doing the combing the same as I always have been, but there was quite a lot of white substance on the comb. I sometimes get this on the combings but it was especially heavy this time. It seems to be "mushy" or paste like and rinses off immediately with water or wiping, although sometimes just wiping causes it to get stuck in between the combs teeth. Some comb throughs had just that, other comb throughs had larger, almost flakey looking "pieces" if you will. The next morning after my shower I combed and didn't get the same substance, but did have the usual few white eggs or nits. Is that white, sticky, paste like substance and flakey looking pieces lice and their nits and eggs, or do you think that the treatment the night before dried out my scalp and that is what was on the comb? For the last couple of weeks, I've not found any live lice on my scalp but I feel crawling sensations almost daily. If not live lice, how long will this hypersensitivity last? I also feel it on my forehead, inside my left ear, shoulders, neck, cheeks, arms etc. and there is never ANYTHING there. Am I just making myself crazy??

Anonymous said...

I found out I had lice almost a month ago I treated my hair about 2 weeks ago with Dr prescribed natroba and I used a metal comb nothing came out on the comb dead or alive or eggs then I found a unhatched egg in my hair today so I treated it again n use the comb method again and nothing came again dead alive or eggs wat am I doin wrong I get this crawling sensation in my head multiple Times a day n it freaks me out can you feel the move or no I really need advice

sasha said...

please help cathy I am the post from December 10 2015

Anonymous said...

Cathy are you still available on this if so pleas respond to this comment it would be dearly appreciated .

Unknown said...

So we've Shampooed with Rid and thoughly combed thru her hair yesterday and again combing this morning and my daughter still has nits ... I'm using the lice combs not sure if I need to buy a specific one or if I should start a blow drying regiment but I've read different things on of this is effective or if it would burn her scalp for it to be hot enough to kill nits.. terrified here the shampoos don't work and would like to get rid of the nits

Anonymous said...

Hi I found out I hadnlice Xmas day 2015 its now Feb I've shampooed my head 8times comb everydaybin the shower and the last time my friend checked my head she saw nothing but I'm still itchy and feel like some things crawling in my hair what do I do dobi still have lice

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

If you have been combing and have not found any nits or bugs for 2 weeks or more, you probably don't have head lice. I would generally trust what you see (or in this case, do not see) in the comb. Do you have a good metal lice comb with long rigid teeth? I trust those combs more than I trust the plastic combs that come in some lice "shampoo" kits because a good metal comb will get out many nits as well as bugs.

I can't know for sure if you do have or do not have head lice, but I do know that the "crawly" feeling is probably psychological - even I feel that feeling when I think about head lice. Our own hypersensitivity to the problem can make us have very real itchiness, but it doesn't mean we have head lice. And sometimes, our scalps are itchy because we've irritated them - too many shampoos and combings can make a head itchy as well.

My recommendation is this. If you have a good lice comb and have done some good wet combings (with conditioner) and have found no lice or nits for a while, then take a break from combing. And I would give up on the shampoos completely. Let your scalp recover and see if that reduces the itch. Don't panic. You've got this. Good luck.

Anonymous said...

Im very shy quite embarrassed I have had lice for while I been combing but I am a very busy person so it wasn't anything I did daily, I love my hair im so afraid to cut it. Ive been bullied before so cutting my hair and having a boy hair cut isn't what i have planned. PLease help me I have dry eggs and came across some live ones. Please help me give me an advice!!! And you said not to worry about washing anything why exactly is that?

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Hi! You said that you have had lice for a while but are a busy person. I get it! But lice require time and attention. Because you have lice but are very busy, you shouldn't waste time doing things that have no effectiveness. Make sure you have a good lice comb (long, tight,rigid metal teeth) and do WET combing with conditioner every few days. This really works but you have to keep at it until you have had 2 weeks of finding no eggs or bugs. As for things with no effectiveness, lice live on your head. Not in your clothes or on your bedding or in your carpeting. Extra cleaning or washing does not help the situation. Keep the little time that you have available for working on coming the lice off your head. Good luck.

Beth said...

My daughter has been dealing with lice since November. We have used Rid 2x, then Nix 2x, Fairy Tales and Licefreee! I know it's the combing that is going to help. We do almost nightly nit checks and some sort of treatment every week (2x a week for a few weeks). Thing is I rarely find adult lice. Only the first time or so, and even then, it was only a few. I have found nits and picked them out. The last two times I only found nymphs. how can this be? Are we at the tail end of this cycle?? I am so used to this by now :(

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Beth, it is obvious that you will do whatever it takes to deal with the head lice. So, I know you will beat this. You are right - it is the combing that is going to help. The fact that you only found nymphs the last two times is very encouraging - it means there were some eggs that were missed in previous combings (which is very common). They hatched and you got the immature bugs out before they could themselves lay eggs. Yes, I believe you are in the tail end of the cycle, but please keep going for a while more. Do wet combing with a good lice comb and some conditioner every few days until you have had 2 weeks of no findings (no lice, no nits). You just want to make sure that no other eggs have been missed that could hatch later. Don't worry about nightly nit checks - on the days between combings, don't even think about head lice. Do not be doing any laundry or cleaning beyond your regular routine. You've been very busy - make sure you get your rest! Don't do any more treatments - it is the combing that is getting the job done. Actually, YOU are getting the job done. And you're doing it well. Good work and good luck.

Anonymous said...

My daughter came home with lice last week. She walked in the door and was scratching so I immediately checked her. Did a treatment that night. But I didn't find any adult louse?? Have been checking her hair almost everyday. Found a couple nits here and there. And just did the second treatment still no louse but a few nits.... but I tried checking my own hair and of course didn't do so well so I just decided to do a treatment anyway by myself and I didn't get anything? Then today freaking out I was combing through my hair like crazy and I have bad dandruff as to how much hairspray I use daily.. I swear I feel crawling and I itch but I can't seem to find any nits or I'm missing them?? I'm freaking...

Aubrey Buckman said...

I agree. My 5 year old daughter was sent home the other day with lice. It was so bad i can't believe i never saw it...this was my first experience...i straighten my hair everyday and my friend still found a few eggs in my hair...yuck! She gave me 2 different metal combs and taught me how to take care of my childs thick curly hair. She's lice free now...but i can't stop being paranoid and my head feels all crawly and itchy. Psychosomatic but it's driving me nuts lol...anyway straightening everyday but still had nits.

Aubrey Buckman said...

Oh that Rit or Nix doesn't really work...try the condition and combing trick. I did my daughters with just wet hair and the metal nit comb. Teeny tiny sections at a time that i was careful not to let fall back over the nit filled sections..i used hair clips. Be very very meticulous. I also thought my daughters 2 week itch was due to dry scalp...i felt terrible and horrified when the school sent her home the other day!

Aubrey Buckman said...

My daughters looked like gray brown and tan tiny seseme seeds just laying in her hair! I combed out so many and 6 live bugs....my first experience. I know what I'm looking for now..they better watch out lol

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Just the mention of head lice can make anyone itchy. To the person who is freaking out, if you don't find lice or bugs in the comb, I am certain you do not have head lice. The itch should make us investigate. But once we have checked things out, if we don't find lice or nits, we have to conclude that either the itch is in our minds OR it is caused by something else entirely. There are other things that can make our scalp itch. If you really can't stop scratching but have found no bugs or eggs in the ocmb, talk to your doctor about other possibilities. Otherwise, resist the urge to panic and the itch will subside over time. Good luck!

Anonymous said...

What do you do if there are too many eggs to remove & can't go to a hairdresser for help? Do you keep doing natural remedies and hope for them to grow out, I don't want to cut off all my hair

Anonymous said...

Hi Cathy,

This past week I found myself scratching my head repeatedly. At first I thought nothing of it, until today I noticed a small tick near me. I freaked out, then check my hair. There are yellow-ticks in my hair, not too many that I can see, but still. I made sure to check my sister's hair and she doesn't seem to have any. I contacted my parents and they said they'd buy me the shampoo right away, what I'm wondering is are there any other ways to get rid of them other than just shampoo? Also, how should I cover my hair or hide them during school? I don't know how I'm going to make it through school with them...
Thanks!

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Hello! You've left a comment but I don't think your read the post. I don't recommend the shampoos. Get a good lice comb and do wet combing with conditioner. And please, read the post above. Good luck!

Anonymous said...

Hi Cathy,

3 months ago, my family had noticed a small bug in my head, which turned out to be lice. Because I had found this wonderful post, I was successfully able to get rid of the bugs in my hair. And that was what I thought... Until now. My mother noticed a bug in my hair AGAIN, and she's freaked out why. I'm a little embarrassed to say this, but I don't shower every single day. According to my family, they say it is the lack of hygiene in my scalp that I'm getting these nits. Is that true? I know I should wash my hair more regularly like I'm supposed to, and for some reason your method hasn't been working now. It's been almost a week since I've had it, I've been combing my hair every two days, and I still see a NEST full of eggs and bugs. Please give me some advice! Thank you so much.

Sincerely,
-A struggling student

Anonymous said...

I am in this battle alone. I have done two tratmwnt and have not found any adult lice in about 10 days. I brush it out everyday. I get obsessive when it comes to bugs and I see tiny black dots I dont know if they are dirt or not and I'm worried that because I bought a site and I wear glasses that maybe I'm not seeing if it's a baby bug ring on it but I mean like I said I haven't seen any adult ones and so I don't know what to do because I don't have anybody I can look at my hair to see if there's any eggs and eggs either so I'm not sure what to do or if I did find them didn't know what they were any advice

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Even if you are alone, you can trust what you find in the comb. If you have not seen any adult lice in about 10 days, that's a great sign. I think you would know a bug if you saw one. And there are many things in the hair that can be small black dots. I would comb every 3 days or so - if those small dots are in fact young bugs, a good comb will get them out before they become a greater problem. So, keep combing for a while, but make sure you are taking some days off in between. Because sometimes the worst thing about getting head lice is how they get in your head. You say your are obsessive when it comes to bugs. Try to keep things in perspective. Even if you are alone, you can beat this (and you may have already have beaten it) with wet combing with a good lice comb.

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Struggling Student, head lice are not a hygiene issue. Head lice love dirty heads, clean head, all heads. Not showering every day is not your issue. Head lice are just really that persistent. The thing that can cause complications though is if your hair is tangled or knotted. You say you had a nest of lice and nits. Lice don't build nests but if there is a nice warm spot that your lice comb cannot get to, they may hang out there. Or, if a lice problem gets out of hand, the glue that cements the nits to the hair can tangle it. So do all you can to make sure that your hair is detangled and keep combing. Something was either missed before or you simply got lice again - which can happen. Hope you started the combing again. Another tool you can use is a hair dryer - check out the posts on this blog about this. Good luck.

Anonymous said...

hi i just found out i have lice a few days ago and ive been finding alot of bugs and eggs in my hair i cant tell my mother she said that if i got it she would have to shave me head so it would be easier since my hair is very thick long and hard to brush but ive brushed and brushed but im still always ichy and my head always hurts any more advise?

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Unfortunately, brushing isn't enough to deal with head lice. You need a fine-tooth lice comb, preferably with long rigid metal teeth, to comb out the bugs and eggs. I've combed through hair that is long and thick and though it certainly is more difficult, it can be done when the hair is detangled and it is wet and coated with lots of conditioner. Combing section by section can help as well. If you haven't tried this yet, and have the means to do so, please read the posts on this blog and try it.

Do you have access to a hair dryer? If you blow dry your dry hair with warm - not hot - air at the highest speed your hair dryer will go, you can still kill lots of bugs and eggs. Just make sure to blow dry one smaller section at a time and direct the hair right at the scalp and a the root of the hair. This won't eradicate your head lice in one go but you can do this again over time to help manage the situation. Read the posts on this blog about a hair dryer for the research supporting this.

I don't know how old you are but I really think you need a buddy for this. Is there another trusted adult who can help you? A teacher? A neighbor? The parent of a friend? They might be able to help you OR they might be able to help you tell your mother and offer support in the hopes that she won't feel the need to shave your head. Some parents want to take that route because they feel that having head lice means that a lot of exhausting non-stop cleaning and laundry will have to happen. Look around this blog and be prepared to show your mother the posts that link to research stating that this excessive cleaning does not have an effect on head lice and is not necessary.

If you get yourself informed, have a plan, and have external support, my hope is that your mother will be understanding. You can deal with this. Good luck.

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

One more thing - you say your head is hurting. Lice should cause itching, but hurting is not common. (Some people can over comb/brush and irritate the scalp, but the lice themselves shouldn't hurt you.) This could mean that a more serious problem has developed. Do you have sores on your head? Scratching tiny bites can often lead to bigger wounds and these can get infected. If your scalp is hurting, I recommend that you check in with a doctor or public health nurse just to make sure there isn't something more serious going on as well. I know this really sucks. But you will get through it. Take care.

Fatmah said...

hello Cathy ,
your blog has been such a lifesaver for me.
i keep reading it whenever i start to overthink and panic about head lice

i'am not sure if i have an active case of head lice .. but a week ago i was in the shower and found a small bug dying on my chest .. i examined it and realized it was a lice .. (sesame seed sized brown in color and has tiny legs ).
i freaked out and started to check my5 year old daughter hair and my 14 month old and their dad .. my mom checked my hair and found few nits (10 or more) .. i bought the same day ( moov head lice shampoo and conditioner and comb- its a natural Australian brand treatment) i used their comb and conditioner to check my daughter again i found tiny dots not sure if they were eggs or not and no bugs .. i checked again 2 days later and found nothing ..

for me i have been conditioning and combing non stop .. i keep finding nits ( 7-10 nits each combing session) .. i was really frustrated ..untill 2 days ago found none so i skipped one day / i ordered Nit free terminator and fairy tales Nit free metal comb .. today was my second shampoo treatment i did it and then combed using their conditioner and nit free comb .. i found 2 nits and combed 100 time without finding anything.

i comb my hair by sectioning the part in the neck and behind the ears and comb through it first thoroughly then i start combing the rest of my hair to one side (left ) section by section adding it to the previous hair i combed starting from the part . and then i try to comb my hair to the back without a part .. its painful sometimes i have thick hair .. am i doing it right?
also i wanted to ask you if i can use coconut oil instead of conditioner since i used it once to comb and it was much smoother on my hair ?

and what does it mean if i found nits and no bug?

i will recheck my 5 year old .. and i keep looking throw both daughters hair when dry.

how can be certain that neither have lice .
they have fine hair and long

please reply ..
where i live we have no one to check for lice and i'm worried =(

thank you

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Fatmah,

Yes, you are doing it right. Well done! You are totally beating this. I'm really glad that you are not finding any bugs - however, keep in mind that you still might because you are still finding nits on occasion. If you do find a bug later on, it would probably be a smaller one and it would not mean that you are not doing it right but that you are actually on top of things. By combing every few days (not non-stop - make sure you are getting rest!) you will beat the lice life cycle and get them off of your head before they have the ability to start laying new eggs. With your children, if you have not seen anything in your hair, I would just do a quick routine wet combing once a week, maybe when they are just having a bath. As for yourself, coconut oil is just fine. I know people who have found it a bit messy, and it is considerably more expensive than a cheap conditioner, but you know what works best for your hair. The goal is to have something in your hair that helps it stay wet and detangled during your lice combing.

Don't be worried. You are on top of this. Keep combing every few days until you have had at least two weeks with no lice or nits. Make sure you get your rest. Of course, you know not to waste any time on extra cleaning or laundry. You don't need a lice professional - you know what you are looking for and how to get it out. I am certain you are now a lice expert. Good luck.

Fatmah said...

thank you so much i feel so much better ..

btw today i combed both my girls using coconut oil on wet / damb hair and both are clear .. i can breathe on their part lol
as for me i feel like i'm in progress as i told you i used to find 7-10 nits ( with the metal comb that came with the conditioner kit)
and then i only found 2 nits on my entire head using the nit free terminator comb .. i will continue combing every 2 days for 2 weeks .. as you recommended and maybe check each week after ..

i was wondering is it normal that the nit free comb has an opening where the metal teeths meet the handle part ? both combs (nit free terminator and Nit free fairy tales brand ) has it .. i wish i had a picture to show you but i cant post any here ..

thank you again ..
God bless you ..

Anonymous said...

Hi,

I'm a teen in my house, I'm trying to get rid of lice on myself. My mother has dealer with it before with my two sisters. She said she's not going to help me. I have really thick hair and I tried the Conditioner method. I couldn't see anything in the comb when I started because the comb would have tooh much soap in it. Is there a recommendation to get rid of them for my hair type? Like I said it's really thick and naturally curly/wavy. Thank you so much

Anonymous said...

Half of my nice thick hair is gone now. I literally have the amount of one ponytail when I used to have two and I am going insane about it. I've read every single post but no one that I can tell has asked this question: when i comb with right proper comb in teh shower, pieces of my hair will come out. I put those pieces on teh shower wall. I see no live lice big or small - nothing move, but I see tons of little tiny curly hairs that are a few mllimeters long when stretched out. I do not see any eggs attached them but the wall is white so maybe I'm missing the eggs. I'm glad you said that all eggs are the same size. that is helpful info. What are the little curly things? Is it new hair or the "tail" you are referring to? Are tails curly? do they separate from the eggs? Also what if I see a red curly hair or a red tiny tiny brown spot? Are they baby lice that have died after eating my blood? Ugh, pleae help. This completely sucks. I'm at the point where I am pouring literally everything into my hair: vinegar, essential oils, finally tried mayo for the first time tonight after two weeks of coconut oil and castor oil, baking soda... I hate hate hate this. Also I feel occasional "bites" . I have been combing in teh shower every day for 10 days now and always see the same thing! tiny dots, the small curly hairs and eggs. :( Thank you.

Unknown said...

I tok in my niece for about two month and she came with lice. In turn my daughter got it and so did it. I treated and combed my hands off. We thought we had them beat. Then about a week ago I was at work and I iched and there they were again. Now I have treated again me and my daughter since my niece does not live with me anymore. And I ha e been combing our hair everyday. I haven't really got anything out anymore except dead Nits which I make sure by squeezing each one and I found one baby bug in my daughter hair today. I think I'm winning the battle but our heads really hurt now and mine has scabs that are comi g off with the combing what do I do. I got to beat this but I don't want to hurt my daughter or my head.

Unknown said...

I've combed my daughters hair 4 times now. The last time I found nothing so think I got them all. However, I never found a bug. Only nits. Should I be worried it's still in there?

Railene Gordon said...

I've combed my daughters hair 4 times now. The last time I found nothing so think I got them all. However, I never found a bug. Only nits. Should I be worried it's still in there?

Anonymous said...

I went to a lice specialist after having lice for a year. I combed 2 adult bugs out the night before with hair dry as I felt itch but I did not do a thorough combing. The professional told me I had only one egg in my hair, nothing else. Before traveling the 250 miles to see her I stripped and washed my bedding and vacuumed my mattress. I put clean bedding on when I returned. When I got up the next morning, I itched and combed many tiny tiny red bugs from my air. My hair is strawberry blonde so the bugs match. The lady insists I could not have lice or she would have seen it, yet she did not use a magnifying glass or bright light and only went by what she wiped on a paper towel. The bugs are continuing to come out and I cannot get them to wipe off on a paper towel but can squeeze them out in the sink. My daughter sees them in the sink also. The lady wants a pic which we took and magnified but am having trouble emailing as it says file is too large. Do you have an opinion on this matter?

Cathy, the Nice Lice Lady. said...

Yes, I can't say for sure what you are dealing with, but I have an opinion. I just don't know if it will seem helpful.

I generally trust lice professionals. People who see lice day in and day out. I don't trust them if they are trying to sell you a ton of unnecessary products or if they insist you need their services. But it sounds like the lice professional you saw didn't try to generate extra business so I would tend to believe her.

I once was called to a home to see a woman who was sure she had a horrific case of head lice. She said she was itching non-stop. But I found no nits or lice on her head. She said, "That's what the other woman said too!" That's when I found out that she had had another lice professional in her home the week before.

Lice are persistent, lice are a pain, lice are small, but they are consistent in shape and can be detected without a magnifying glass. If the lice professional did wet combing with a good lice comb, she probably knew what she was talking about. Now, she says she did find one nit; where there is one nit, there are often more. She may have even missed a bug as these are easy to miss. So you may have head lice, or have had head lice, but I am doubting that you have a big head lice problem. If you had a more serious head lice problem, even a bad comb would probably detect the problem.

I don't know about these red bugs that keep coming out. Lice can be tiny red bugs as small as the size of a speck of pepper when they first hatch, but when they are that small, they need to stay on the scalp and often have to be scraped off with your fingernail to be removed - I have not found them to come off easily. At this size, they are not microscopic, but some of the detail of their legs is harder to see. When you look at lice in these red speck stages under a magnifying glass, do you know what they look like? Exactly like adult head lice, just smaller. If you can't send your pictures to this lady, maybe look at images on the internet until you find something that looks exactly like what you are dealing with and then send her the link.

Growing lice and mature lice can mimic almost any colour as they are sort of translucent and will blend in with most hair, though they will seem darker on fair hair and lighter on really dark hair. I can see how they would fit into strawberry blonde hair very well. Since I can't see what you are dealing with, and since the lice professional saw a nit, let's assume you have head lice. If that's the case, then just keep doing what you are doing. With regular wet combing, you can get them out faster then they can reproduce. Also, you may want to read posts on this blog about using a blow dryer which has been shown to have effectiveness when used in a specific way.

One more thing...do you have bites or itching anywhere else in your body? Because I've also been to homes where there were bugs in the hair, but they were not head lice. The bugs didn't live on the scalp but got tangled in the hair. And these bugs bit all over. If you have bites anywhere else, you are dealing with something else.

I know it must seem frustrating for you to travel all that way and still not feel like you have the answers you need, especially when you say that you've had lice for over a year. I don't know if you have an active case of head lice. But if you do, you can beat this. Good luck.

Aaliyah Mominah said...

Hi cathy,
okay so I have dandruff in my hair so when I itch my head I always thought that was the reason until recently I was itching behind my ear then I was walking and looked down at my hands to find this little bug on my thumb. I didn't know what it was so I went and showed it to my dad my dad assumed it WAS lice but then I showed my grandmother and she said it wasn't. but ever since then iv noticed bugs in my hair and I started to freak out but just ignored the feeling and thought maybe theres just bugs around the house and there getting on my fingers but today I also itched a place behind my ear and found TWO BUGS! I went and ran to my mother and showed it to her saying that I think I might have gotten lice. But the only thing she told me was to stop by the drug store and get lice shampoo do those stuff work? or should I just take things to my own? (im in middle school) PLEASE I NEED YOUR HELP!

Anonymous said...

Well, it seems I have joined the group of people with head lice. I had it once about 16 years ago when my two daughters and my son were young. My two daughters had long hair. It was a very embarrassing time for us as the people who didn't understand head lice treated us like we had the plague. I don't feel like going through that again and so I have only shared with my husband and one of my daughters. I am picking up my metal comb today at a drugstore not located in my area. Lol. My question to you is can head lice get on pets? I have two kitty cats that love to snuggle with me.

Zara said...

Hi I really need your help

so I have thought I had llice for two weeks now. ive asked my mom to check me for lice, but she cant find anything. I have been itching a ton, even when im not thinking about it. i got a metal lice comb and combed through my hair. but i didnt find anything. my head still itches even after I started using a zinc shampooo. please help, i dont know if im just combing wrong or if its all in my head. occaisonally i feel a breif sharp pain on my scalp as well. is that a symptom??

Anonymous said...

So, I've had these feelings for a while. Basically it feels like stuf is crawlin on my head and sclp but when O comb through, there's nothing. Whatis s it? Can you feel lice crawling?

Anonymous said...

I used rid and nix but nix works better although it doesn't get everything out it works well

Unknown said...

Hi.I have been camping for about a week now and I have found a louse once or twice during the week and I don't want to tell my mom because she really hates lice!I brought it up once and she was like we are on V.K I don't want to talk about lice.I need to get rid of them because I have more stuff to do this summer and I don't think I should be spreading it!Also I saw a red one and I am so confused !!!please help I'm so worried:(

Daniela said...

Hi there :)

I found your block and thought - if anyone can give advise, it's YOU. I found out three weeks ago, that my daughter has head lice, which she gave to me - of course. I do her hair every day, since she is a mixed kid, with stubborn, dry curly hair. Since then, people treat us like they never want to have anything to do with us anymore. Some lady brought us RID, told me she would come by - putting that stuff in front of our door, left and called in, acting like the lice jump over a distance. However....I treated our hair with RID, Mayonnaise, olive oil, tea tree oil, tea tree oil shampoo and conditioner, vinegar, I've been through every home remedy I could find - spending my day combing through our hair like 3 to 4 times a day...there is no alive lice to be seen, not on my head or my daughters, but as soon as the hair is treated with no matter what, those white little eggs keep appearing all over our head....not on one spot like shown on the pictures on the internet "typical" for a lice infestation. Do you have any more suggestions for me? Since people don't want to have anything to do with us during that period, I have nobody to treat my head - of course I don't have eyes on the back of my head, so getting rid of my lice is nearly impossible...even working with a mirror cabinet.
Going to a professional does not come in question...I don't even have enough money for a halfway decent lice comb - the one I got is from Walgreen's - not to suggest for nits at all....it's just not fine enough.
And all the professionals I found don't do anything under like 250 to 500 dollars - to me it looks like people found an easy way to make money off troubled people.
Do you have any suggestions on how I can get through this?

Anonymous said...

Hi I found out yesterday that my daughter has lice and I want to cut her hair how can I make sure the hair stylist won't see it

Colleen T said...

This is so nicely written. I'm in India right now and just discovered head lice on myself. The tip about breathing is key. Thanks for your encouragement and step by step reassurance.

Anonymous said...

hi do you have any tips on how to comb your own hair like do you comb up or down or side to side? cuss i cant seem to get rid of my own im 16 and have had then for a year but nothing is improving

Anonymous said...

Could you tell me more about how to deal with curly hair? My niece have very curly hair and it's almost impossible to brush and I'm at my wit's end trying to rid her of bugs. Our entire house has a recurring case because i can't get into her hair!