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Old 01-14-2015, 04:37 PM
 
Location: DFW/Texas
757 posts, read 670,840 times
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I'm not sure if this is the right forum for this question but I'm going to try it out anyway. Our niece came down with lice about 2 weeks ago and has been treated for it twice. The thing is, my SIL is still finding a few of the eggs in her hair and I'm wondering if our niece is still contagious?? She has long, thick hair and it's always down and I'm really paranoid about our kids catching it- we're all going out to a family dinner tonight and the kids always play with each other.

Our kids had viral pink eye a few years ago and it was HORRIBLE. I kept them both out of commission from everyone for 3 weeks and did close to 40 loads of laundry and went through a ton of Clorox. I am fully aware that kids are going to catch things regardless of how cautious a parent is but if I can prevent my kids from catching something then I'm going to do it because dealing with kids and things like lice and pink eye, etc. is about the most miserable thing ever.

I've never had lice and don't really know much about it except that it's pretty contagious and a pain to deal with . Shoot, I'm itchy just thinking about it! LOL! Is our niece still contagious at this point?
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Old 01-14-2015, 04:45 PM
 
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She might be, she might not be. It depends on what the treatment was and how well her mom has been doing the comb outs to remove the eggs, and if she made sure everyone in the house was treated. She probably not very contagious if her mom did even a half-way decent job of it for two weeks. However, just to be safe, get a lice comb and do a preventative comb on your kids. They can do it in the shower - just use lot of conditioner/detangler. That, and wash their clothes right away after they play with her. If you want to be super safe, change your sheets, too.

She probably had the lice before it was discovered, so they might have gotten it already. I do a preventative comb on my kid once in a while - nothing super-thorough, but if you do it once a month you have a really good chance of avoiding infestation.

Lice really are not that hard to kill - they don't live long off people, and if your kids don't have super-long hair then combing and washing their clothes is enough. Even throwing them in the dryer for 20 minutes should do it. Plus, now there is a non-toxic lice treatment that doctors can prescribe (and insurance can cover). No need to freak out - just take some precautions and you'll be fine.
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Old 01-14-2015, 04:46 PM
 
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Most likely not.. Treatment of human head lice - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

So long as you're not seeing living lice in the hair.. It is considered to be 'cured'.
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Old 01-14-2015, 05:02 PM
 
Location: Texas
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Labonte18 View Post
Most likely not.. Treatment of human head lice - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

So long as you're not seeing living lice in the hair.. It is considered to be 'cured'.
Not exactly. The nits in the hair grow into adult lice. That's why you have to remove them. Same thing with the eggs. That's why people spend hours and hours combing them out of the hair. It's where the term "nitpicking" originated. Problem is, it is virtually impossible to get them all, and virtually impossible to allow your squirming, yelling daughter to let you do it.

Now, the good news is, like Mnseca says above, lice live for only a short period of time after falling off of hair, so recent advice says you don't have to bag everything up, throw it away etc. Since the lice die so easily after falling off the head, they do everything they can to remain there. That's why it's so hard to get rid of them. They pass from person by head to head contact. Think about how kids (especially little girls) are always so close together, touching heads etc.

My daughter got lice last year in Kindergarten. I was mortified. Contrary to what most people think, it has nothing to do with personal hygiene and anyone can get it (i.e. not just poor, dirty kids). We seem to have a never-ending outbreak at her school, which is in an upper middle class suburb where everyone has housekeepers and spotless homes. So, go figure.

We haven't had an outbreak since and nobody else in the house got it when my daughter had it last year. We now use "fairy Tales shampoo" and I spray their hair down with a little water mixed with tea tree oil every morning (lice supposedly don't like certain essential oils).
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Old 01-14-2015, 05:04 PM
 
Location: DFW/Texas
757 posts, read 670,840 times
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Whew, okay, I feel better now! No one else in my SIL's house got it and my other niece sleeps in the same room as her sister, too. My SIL treated it with a kit she got from the drugstore so I'm sure it's okay....hopefully...LOL.
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Old 01-14-2015, 05:08 PM
 
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Poor kid. Still the best treatment is to cut the hair short as well as treating it. Long hair is a pain with lice.
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Old 01-14-2015, 05:24 PM
 
Location: Texas
3,888 posts, read 3,126,773 times
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For the time being, maybe think about throwing each kid's towels and pillowcases in the dryer on air fluff after use.

And, don't worry, you will forever be paranoid. I am always checking my girls and am convinced every little spot I see in there is a nit. Of course, it isn't, because when you have live adult lice, you will know
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Old 01-14-2015, 06:26 PM
 
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our schools dont let the kids come back until they pass a nit test (no eggs in their hair at all)
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Old 01-14-2015, 07:02 PM
 
Location: Texas
3,888 posts, read 3,126,773 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HighFlyingBird View Post
our schools dont let the kids come back until they pass a nit test (no eggs in their hair at all)
Ugh, that could take forever. I see why they do it, though. I think the policy here in the Denver Public schools is that you cannot require they go home for lice, period. I think it is just "strongly recommended" that they do. Policy could vary among schools maybe.
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Old 01-14-2015, 07:34 PM
 
Location: Space Coast
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I wash my daughter's hair in an olive oil based shampoo every 1-2 weeks as a preventative measure. Tea tree oil works too.
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