Head lice are tiny, wingless insects that live in human hair and are particularly common in children. The parasites feed on tiny amounts of blood drawn from the scalp and although they are not dangerous, they are extremely contagious and can be annoying and tough to get rid of. But instead of paying for pricey specialty shampoo or to take your little one to a specialist, we came up with some natural ways to get rid of head lice.
- Many advocate the use of white vinegar due to it’s acidic properties which can destroy head lice instantly. All you need to do is dilute the vinegar in equal parts of water and then saturate the hair and scalp with the solution. Wrap in a towel and leave for 1-2 hours. Afterwards you just need to dip a comb in white vinegar and comb the lice out, doing one section at a time.
- Another remedy is that age old ‘fixes everything’ solution that is coconut oil. Coconut oil is deadly to head lice so if you do have an outbreak then try heating some up and giving your child’s hair a hot oil treatment with it. Not only is this a great way of giving hair a healthy boost and shine but it’s a natural and effective treatment for head lice that doesn’t contain any harsh chemicals.
- Another oil that is great at treating head lice without any harmful side effects is tea tree oil. This oil has antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal and antiseptic properties that can stop head lice dead in their tracks. Mix a few drops of the oil with 2-3 tablespoons on olive oil and massage into the hair and scalp. Leave for 30 minutes to an hour then rinse and comb through. Please do not apply neat tea tree oil to the scalp as it can be toxic or irritating to the skin in high doses, particularly in infants.
- Sticking with the oil theme, sesame seed oil is another great natural remedy as it contains natural insecticide properties. Again just massage into the hair and scalp, wrap in a towel and leave for an hour or two to work it’s magic. Then just rinse and comb.
- While you are in the process of raiding your kitchen cupboards, why not use some garlic? Albeit a slightly smellier natural head lice remedy, garlic has been known as an effective way of getting rid of these little nasties. Many are adamant that the simple process of just taking garlic capsules orally is enough to kill the little critters. Others crush a few cloves of garlic into a paste then mix with lemon juice. After applying the paste directly to the head they leave it in overnight before washing off in the morning.
- Have you got a jar of mayonnaise? Then slather your child’s hair with it, stick a shower cap on their head while they sleep and then in the morning wash as normal. Apparently this little gem of a natural remedy works a treat and The Minnesota Department of Health even lists mayonnaise as an acceptable suffocant for treating head lice.
- One final option is the use of petroleum jelly which can have a stifling effect on these pesky little insects. Just apply a thick layer to the scalp before going to bed and then use baby oil to remove the jelly in the morning. The dead head lice should just comb right out. It’s worth noting that wrapping the head in a shower cap or towel before bedtime will most probably save those pillow cases from ruin.
So if your little one does come home one afternoon suffering from this itchy and annoying affliction then hopefully one of these more natural and organic approaches to treating head lice will work for you.
Does your child have other pesky problems at school, like bullies? Here’s an article of how to help them avoid this fate!
My niece will be coming to stay the weekend with me and she has lice that they can’t get rid of. How do me and my 1 year old avoid catching lice from her? Also any tips on how to get rid of her lice for good?
Lice question! A friend of mine has lice and has had it for a while and has done multiple box treatments for it but can’t seem to get rid of them! Anyone have any tricks? Trying to find something before she just shaves her head
So the AAP just changed their opinion on sending and keeping kids with lice home. They say children with lice shouldn’t be sent home or kept out of school because it’s not a serious illness and not worth interrupting their education for. What are your mama’s thoughts?
So yesterday we noticed that my daughters head was full of lice :(! My husband works all day so i have to deal with this on my own, and take care of my one month old! What is the best way to get rid of lice?