My kid and I got lice a while back. God only knows where she picked it up because she’s not in daycare, but whatever. So I did about 17 loads of hot laundry, bagged up some toys and couch cushions and proceeded to buy the de-lousing shampoo from the drug store.
Having now had the nasty things I have a big beef with the companies who make the lice treatments. It is 100% unnecessary and ill-advised to buy this shampoo.
The reason even the manufacturers suggest doing the treatment once, and then again in 7 -10 days, is because it does not necessarily kill the eggs. If the eggs aren’t killed they will hatch in a few days and you’ll have the problem all over again.
There are a number of things wrong with pharmacists suggesting this treatment.
First of all, it’s expensive. Where I live, it costs almost $20 for one treatment.
Second, the bottle is really small, so if you have long, abundant hair like mine it will often not be enough.
Third, it’s made of questionable toxins that they advise you don’t get in your eyes or your mouth. I don’t know if you’ve tried to wash a child’s hair, but the chances of doing exactly that are great (especially on a toddler who doesn’t like her hair washed).
Fourth, lice eat your head and leave lesions, even if you don’t scratch. The chemicals burn on these lesions, causing not only discomfort for the 10 minutes you have to leave it on, but also concerns over those toxins entering your body through those scabs.
A treatment that is cheaper, healthier and equally, if not more, effective: don’t poison the lice, suffocate them.
After a horrendous experience de-lousing my toddler with the lice shampoo, I asked the pharmacist if there was a viable alternative. She told me to use a thick substance (cheap conditioner is easiest, mayonnaise is also good) and coat it over your whole head. Really heap it on. On my hair it took a half litre of conditioner. Wrap your head in plastic wrap and go about your business. I don’t know how long it takes to smother bugs so I left it for a couple of hours. Then, drag a fine-toothed comb through the hair to remove the carcases. This step is easier using conditioner, but if you’re using mayo, just dip the comb in vinegar before each swipe to break up the coating and make it easy to comb through.
Often, the eggs are too small to be removed with the comb. And similar to using the toxic shampoo, they will not likely be dead. Now this is where I have a real problem with the instructions on lice shampoo. Re-do the treatment after 7 days? In my experience, the lice had not only already been able to hatch in that time, but also lay more eggs of their own. My advice? If you’re anal like me, do the gooping conditioner/mayo treatment every other day for a week. Although, I’m sure doing it every 2 or 3 days for three treatments would suffice.
I’m not spouting nonsense. It is only logical that this works because insects cannot live without oxygen. Also, I tried it and kicked the problem in the ass.
Speaking of kickers: you have to be diligent about washing/putting in plastic bags any other items in your house that may have been in contact with the infected person’s head. It’s not that you have to go overboard, you just have to be aware and take precautions. Wash whatever you can in hot water and put couch pillows/stuffed animals/hats in air-tight plastic bags for a couple of weeks.
There is no reason to spend upwards of $40, intoxicate yourself and keep our elementary schools dealing with this disgusting problem. This way is safe, it works like nobody’s business, and it’s cheap. Don’t listen to your pharmacist.