in this article:
Lice, there are probably few parasites that are quite as universally hated – by everyone, but especially by parents of school children. Head lice are highly infectious and are characterized by intensive itching of the scalp caused by the allergic reaction caused by the lice’s toxic saliva. Many are doubtful of the treatments currently available because many hair remedies that are used to treat hair loss contain very strong chemicals. In this elaborate guide you will learn about the most effective ways to win them over with natural remedies you can find at home.
‘Lice’ is the common name of a group of mandatory haematopoietic parasitic insects, which as such feed exclusively with blood. These are mammalian haematopoietic parasites belonging to the Anoplura or Siphunculata order.
Those who infest man – causing a parasitic skin disorder known as pediculosis or invitation – are distinguished in:
- Head lice (Pediculus capitis humanus),
- Body or clothing lice (Pediculus corporis humanus)
- Pubic lice (Phthirus pubis).
What do lice look like?
Lice have no wings and their survival is conditioned by their ability to anchoring on skin and hair or fibers of personal things, thanks to six robust legs with hooks and terminal pliers.
Lice lodged on hairs and clothes are almost invisible to the naked eye and share similar biological and morphological characteristics; long about 2-4 mm and less than a millimeter in width, they have a greyish white color and a pointed head. The pubic ones stand out for the most crumpled shape which makes them similar to a tiny crab.
To feed, lice sting the skin, inject saliva and defecate during the blood meal; every female subtracts about 1mg of blood per day from the body. Particular antigens present in the saliva cause small allergic erythematous or papular reactions in the stinging sites. Such manifestations, typical of the pediculosis, give an intense, continuous and annoying itch, which in turn determines the evolution of lesions in escorts from scratching. For this reason, especially in the pediculosis of the body, they can result in bacterial skin overflows and consequent appearance of folliculitis, forunculosis and impetiginization.
In the past, lice, especially those affecting the head and body, were dangerous vectors of other infections, such as exanthematic typhus – whose etiologic agent is rickettsia prowazekii – and epidemic recurrent fever. These diseases are still relatively common in underdeveloped countries where precarious preconditions are associated with wars, natural disasters or famines.
Illnesses caused by lice, called pedocolosis or fitiriasis, are highly pruriginal skin disorders, often caused by scratching injuries. Lesions caused by scratching can get infected and cause complications (e.g. impetigo).
During its existence, the louse female lays 50 to 300 mother-of-pearl eggs, wrapped in a chitin-capsule and known as nits. During its lifespan (6-7 weeks, of which 3-4 they spend as adults), females deposit from 100 to 300 eggs, ice 8-10 during 24 hours, especially at night. They measure about 0.8 x 0.3 mm and open in 7-8 days, releasing voracious young lice that reach maturity within two weeks. To the sight, the eggs appear like small white dots, tensely attached to the hair (usually in the back region of the head), to garments, beard or body hair. Precisely this feature allows distinguishing common dandruff scales from lice eggs.
Head lice tend to lay their eggs above all in the hair of the back and the temples, often behind the ears. Eggs of body and pubic lice are instead commonly found in the seams of underwear. Beard, eyebrows, eyebrows, and pubic and armpits hair can also accommodate lice eggs.
Nits appear as small ovoid elements of white-yellow or grayish color. They have a size of 0.3 x 0.8 mm. Lice eggs are tightly attached to the hair or hair stem, not far from the skin. In particular, eggs that are still full are of gray yellow and are found to be attached to the hair stem; the ones that have already opened are white-transparent and locate more distally.
The clumps of lilac can also be appreciated with a naked eye, but it is advisable to observe it with a lens or dermatoscope. Unlike nits, dandruff is made up of skin squashes that break away with great ease by shaking hair. The two conditions should not be confused, as dandruff can also be associated with itching of the scalp.
In order to eradicate infestation, the removal of nits from the garments, hair and body plays a role which is fundamental, to say the least. Personal things (clothes, scarves, caps, underwear etc.) should be washed at high temperatures (at least 60 ° C for 20 minutes, sufficient to kill both the insect and the eggs); if it is not possible to wash them, put them in closed plastic bags for at least ten days. For added safety, it is also good to wash linens and any plush toys or cloths in the same way. Beard, axillary hair and pubic hair must be shaved.
Pesticide-specific products, such as shampoos, gels or lotions, can be purchased commonly in the pharmacy, some even without a prescription (however recommended). Hair must be passed many times with a thick-toothed comb, preferably with vinegar or specific pesticides.
Mechanical intervention through the comb is very important, as shampoos and other pesticides may have a limited effect. This is an operation that takes time and patience; this should preferably be done in the light of day, near a window and repeated for several days. In order to avoid reinfection, all members of the family have to frequently check with each other; the presence of nits attests to infestation. After use, it is indispensable to bathe the brushes and combs used to remove lice eggs in boiling water.
Where do head lice come from?
Lice, contrary to what they are often thought to be, is not a sign of poor hygiene and is no longer widespread in areas with poor hygienic health conditions. Let’s face it: they can nudge on anyone’s head. So if no degree of hygiene is going to protect you and your kids from these unbidden guests, what is, and most importantly, how do you eliminate them once they’ve checked in?
All children in school or kindergarten need preventive treatment against lice. If it’s too late and your child already has lice, it’s possible to remove them in a natural way. The very idea of the detestable insects can send a shiver down your spine, but even the cleanest child can bring them to your home.
School, playgrounds, sports sections and kindergarten are just some of the places where children can get lice. Find out how to remove lice naturally and kill them safely and without getting intoxicated by pesticides. It‘s bad enough for your child to come home from school with lice, you will not need to use toxic agents on the child’s head as well. Some anti-parasite products are still manufactured with dangerous toxins that are prohibited for use in agriculture. The majority of products are also flammable. Almost all of these products can cause terrible problems if you use them too long, too often or on children who are too young. If you use any of these products, read at least every word in the instructions and follow them to the letter. Otherwise, you can treat lice in a natural way. Read the full article before you start any natural treatment against lice.
As anticipated, lice have no wings and outside the host do not survive for long; consequently, the contagion is mainly due to direct contact. Pediculosis is frequent in conditions of overcrowding and poor hygiene, while it is uncommon in advanced communities; typical of the less well-off social classes, can also spread to those most favored by personal contact, such as the promiscuous use of combs, brushes, scarves and hats (P. capitis), and sexual relations (P. pubis). Lice infestation, by itself, is not sufficient to identify the social status or degree of personal hygiene of the individual; it is also important to remember that lice cannot be passed on from pets to humans and vice versa.
Pubic lice are predominantly located in the pubic and perianal area, but they can also colonize other hairs of the body, including eyelashes and eyebrows (especially in children), as well as underwear seams; contamination can also be indirect, for example, through hairs on clothes, towels, linens and toilet seats. The pubic louse seems unable to transmit infections, but may cause skin irritations more or less intense.
Head lice, most common in the school age, are predominantly located in the hair of the neck, back of ear and temples, while the pediculosis of the clothes or body prefers adults and the elderly, spreading in public dormitories or through infested personal belongings.
The reasons for the present recurrence of this annoying infestation are many, such as the remarkable immigration flow, the selection of lice resistant to common pesticides, promiscuity, international travel and long staying in crowded places (despite of a very good hygienic level).
Crab lice, or pubic lice, are parasitic insects that settle in several hairy areas of the human body, first of all the genital one. Only the hair is excluded from the infestation. Crab lice transmission requires very close physical contact, such as a sexual relationship with an infected person; contamination is also possible through the use of contaminated objects such as clothing and underwear.
The characteristic signs caused by pubic pediculosis occur at the skin level and consist of: itching, irritation and appearance of small blue spots. Diagnosing pubic lice is pretty simple (as long as it’s symptomatic): for a doctor, it suffices using a magnifying glass to observe pruriginous areas. Disinfectant therapy requires the use of insecticide products, in the form of creams, lotions or shampoos.
Crab lice, or pubic lice, are parasitic insects that nest in the genital areas and other hairy areas of the human body except the hair. Their transmission, among people, occurs as a result of close physical contact with an infected individual or with a contaminated object. Parasite contamination (or infestation) is considered an exclusive parasitic-type infection of humans. Remember that contamination, infestation and parasitic infection are three different terms that define the same concept.
How do crab lice look like? They are about 2 millimeters in length, rounded shape and have an oval head with two large antennas. Their body has hairy coating and can be of yellow to gray or dark red. 3 pairs of paws are attached to the body (so 6 paws all over); those of the front pair remind two big claws and serve to cling better to the hairs of the infected individual. Pubic lice are insects, therefore, to reproduce, they lay eggs of very small size. At the time of laying, the eggs are contained in small bags, able to remain firmly glued to hairs scattered around the body. The bags are brown outside and white inside.
Pubic lice nourish the blood of the infected person. Blood extraction takes place through a small skin puncture. Pubic lice can nudge in any area of the body covered with hair except the head. Generally, they are located in the genital areas, but in some patients it is also possible to trace them in the armpits, legs, chest, back, abdomen, beard and mustache, and finally even in the eyebrows and lashes.
Pubic lice are passed on from close physical contact with an infected individual or with a contaminated object. Extreme closeness is an indispensable condition for contamination, as the passage of pubic lice from individual to individual (or object to individual) occurs only by sliding. The pubic lice, in fact, do not fly or jump. Transmission occurs from an infected to a healthy person. Lice contamination occurs almost always after sexual intercourse, after a close physical contact between two people. Condom use does not guarantee effective protection and widespread parasitic infection with these modes is considered, in all respects, a sexually transmitted disease.
Sometimes the objects contaminated by pubic lice may also be a vehicle for the spread of parasitic infection.
Usually, the most contaminated objects are:
- Bed sheets
- Toilet seats
Transmission of pubic lice with these mediums is a very rare event, which is noticed on very few occasions. When they infest a person, pubic lice live for one to three months. In this time, the females present also lay 300 eggs, which hatch in about 6-10 days. The new generation of lice, to mature and be able to reproduce in their turn, takes about 2-3 weeks. Lice present on the objects live only 24-48 hours; then they die for lack of nourishment. This explains the rarity with which pubic lice are moved from contaminated objects to people.
- Itching at areas infested with the parasite
- Inflammation and irritation in the infested areas, resulting from frequent scarring
- Traces of black powder inside the underwear
- Blue spots in the areas where pubic lice are nested. These signs are the outcome of the bites. The most interesting points are: the inside of the thigh and the lower part of the abdomen
- Small blood spots on the skin, just after the parasitic bites
- At times, it may happen that pubic lice are asymptomatic or almost in the sense that they do not involve the appearance of any obvious manifestation, or they do so in to a minimal degree.
Itching is the most characteristic expression of the infestation by crab live. It affects areas contaminated by the parasite and is usually very intense. Itching is not nearly immediate, but occurs after several weeks of contamination. Unlike what you might think, pruriginal sensation is not due to bites, but an allergic reaction to the saliva of pubic lice. The itching gets worse at night, as it is at this time of day that pubic lice are more active.
If the aforementioned signs of pubic lice are noticeable, contact your local practitioner or a specialist in genital tract infections immediately. If the infestation is symptomatic, diagnosing pubic lice can be simple and immediate; conversely, it can become problematic when contamination is asymptomatic. In order to detect the presence of parasites and their eggs, an objective examination is required, during which the physician (preferably specialist in genital herniated infections) uses a magnifying glass.
During the objective examination, the physician uses a magnifying glass to flatten all the parts of the body where pubic lice and / or their eggs may reside. Pubic lice are first recognized for coloring, which is yellow-grayish or dark red, and secondarily for bite marks, which may be blue (if a few days) or blood-colored (if recent). Eggs are also recognizable by color: they are brown when they still have to open, and white when they are released.
In the presence of a pest infestation, it is important to understand the cause of the disorder, because if this is a result of sexual intercourse, further examinations are needed. These examinations consist of a series of precautionary tests aimed at detecting sexually transmitted infections. The presence of an infection, in addition to pubic lice, requires proper therapy against both problems.
In order to heal from pubic lice, insecticide preparations (in this case also pesticides) are required, to be applied according to medical prescriptions throughout the body or on the affected areas alone. Such preparations are available in the form of creams, lotions or shampoos.
If there are also eyebrows and lashes involved, these require a specific treatment, different from the previous ones and based on Vaseline. To avoid new infestations, make sure that you do not survive the eggs and wash clothes, sheets, and any other potentially contaminable object (towels, etc.).
As mentioned earlier, insecticide preparations are available in creams, lotions or shampoos to spread on the body for at least 7-10 days. For the best product choice and how to use it, it is advisable to seek advice from your doctor or pharmacist. Teenagers under the age of 18 and pregnant women or breastfeeding women need insecticide products suitable for them. On the market, creams, lotions and shampoos exist for patients with different characteristics: it is up to the doctor or pharmacist to indicate the ideal preparation. How to use creams, lotions and shampoos? Here are the main tips:
The insecticide preparation should be applied according to the doctor’s instructions. In some cases, it is sufficient to spread the product on the areas with hair affected by pubic lice; in other cases, it may serve more ‘invasive’ treatment, extended to all areas of the body covered with terminal hairs.
If the product is harmful to the eyes, do not apply on eyebrows and eyelashes. If you do not notice this recommendation, you should wash your eyes immediately with plenty of water. During the treatment period, it is best to wash it only if strictly necessary, because the water eliminates the product from the body, obviously neutralizing the effects.
After each shower, or when washing any of the particles contaminated by pubic lice, the insecticide preparation should be reapplied immediately. Generally, doctors recommend limiting the number of new applications to the indispensable minimum (two or three, not more), as prolonged treatment is ineffective. If pubic lice are resistant to certain pesticides (a feature made evident by the lack of enhancements), you should contact your doctor or pharmacist and ask for an alternative preparation.
When pubic lice have also spread to eyelashes or eyebrows, specific products are required, as normal preparations used for the rest of the body cause irritation and redness. These products are ointments based on white or yellow vaseline, which, once applied, ‘choke’ the pest parasites, killing them. Two applications are required per day. Carefully take care of all the affected areas well, for only this will definitely kill the parasites.
Before each new application, you must be careful to clean your eyelashes and eyebrows with a clean tissue. Once the cleaning is finished, the tissue is discarded and not re-used. The treatment should last at least 8 days. If, after 8 days, your doctor feels there are still placards or eggs left, apply the ointment for another 2 or 3 days.
If the eggs survive after the first treatment (it is possible, since they are more resistant to pubic lice), the doctor prescribes to the patient a second cycle of treatment. The latter generally begins 7 days after the end of the first and is intended to eliminate the newly born and not yet ripe enough to lay eggs. Often, at the end of the second treatment, eggs are still unopened; this, however, does not have to worry because they are the eggs from the previously killed pubic lice.
For proper and complete disinfestation, all garments, sheets and objects used for personal hygiene (towels, etc.) must be washed; these, in fact, could contain pubic lice. Washing must be done at the washing machine at 50 ° C, as only hot water kills all the parasites present.
At the skin and eye level, anti-lice preparations can cause irritation, itching, redness, and burning sensation. In each of these cases, carefully wash the affected area with water and contact your doctor to expose the affected symptoms and indicate an alternative treatment. Certain alcohol-based products can alter hair coloring.
Inform your partner and family members. If the presence of crab lice appeared as a result of a sexual intercourse, it is good to inform your partner because he may not be aware of the problem that afflicts them (as you remember, sometimes pubic lice are asymptomatic). In addition, it is good practice to familiarize people close to you with your possible infestation, as they may have been inadvertently contaminated by the lice as well.
When two infected partners can be considered healed? Two partners can be considered cured and resume normal sexual life only after disinfestation from pubic lice and eggs (after the second cycle of treatment) has ended successfully.
Surprising truths on lice
Lice is one of those topics on which false myths are plenty.
Should we put some things straight once and for all?
- Lice equal poor hygiene
False. Lice is not a sign of false hygiene and can attack children’s hair like anyone’s hair. Contrary to how often they think, they are no longer widespread in poor countries where hygiene and health conditions are worse. In fact, lice infestations are very common in rich countries and are a problem everywhere, because of the ease with which they spread.
- Lice can hop from head to toe
False. The lice does not jump and do not fly; they propagate with direct contact, for example when children sit close, head to head. Spreading also occurs when you share personal belongings, such as combs, cushions, or hats.
- Those with pets get contaminated more easily
False. Pets are not a source of human louse epidemic, as human lice is not a source of infestation for animals.
- Vinegar is a natural remedy against lice
True and false. Vinegar does not kill lice, but it can still be very useful to get rid of unwanted guests. Vinegar, in fact, decays the substance that fixes the lilacs to the chapel; Therefore, before taking other measures, it is really useful to pass a narrow toothbrush in the hair in the hair, or alternatively, wipe the hair well with a solution of water and vinegar and then move the comb. This operation helps remove the nests and makes it harder to catch new eggs. However, this treatment alone is not enough. Water mixed with vinegar can also be used for the latest hair rinse.
- If there is a notice of the presence of lice at school it is necessary to immediately treat the child a pesticide shampoo
False. Use shampoos or lotions without first checking if the baby really has lice is not worth anything. These products, in fact, are not indicated and are not effective for prevention. Rather, if the fateful warning appears, carefully check whether there are lice or lizards on the baby’s head, perhaps using the vinegar method described above.
- Lice do not survive for a long time away from the scalp
True. Lice are parasites that reside in close contact with the chapel and, far from their environment, they can not survive for more than 24-48 hours. As a result, to disinfect personal items and clothing of people who have been infested with lice, it is often enough to leave them outdoors for at least 24 hours. However, it is advisable to wash thoroughly with water and soap, preferably in a washing machine or in any case with hot water.
- Scratching is one of the first signs of pediculosis
False. The itching, and the resulting scratching, is caused by an irritation caused by lice saliva that does not appear immediately, but after a few days. Therefore, when the child starts scratching, they has already had lice for a few days and has therefore been a source of contamination.
Natural remedies for lice
If you have lice, you may have itching and may have noticed small lice or eggs on your hairs. Head lice spread through direct contact with a person who already has head lice, head lice can also be transmitted from beds, clothes and hair accessories. Head lice eat up of the blood from the scalp. Head lice can be treated at home with natural remedies. To naturally kill all the lice, you must clean your environment and your hair. Lice can be killed quickly, easily, cheaply and safely with mayonnaise. Just take a new can of mayonnaise from your pantry or grocery store. Take a handful (or more) of mayonnaise and apply it to child’s head scalp. Also, apply it behind the ears and back of the neck.
If you shave your head, you will surely get rid of all the lice. Also cutting the hair will make it easier to find the lice and comb out their eggs. If your hairstyle permits of such drastic measures and if anything else fails or seems too complicated, this is an option. If you are not prepared to sacrifice your hair, read on for effective home remedies against lice and their eggs.
You can cover your head with a plastic shower cap to prevent the mayonnaise from dropping on the floor and furniture. Allow it to remain for two hours so that the lice are stiffened and their eggs are destroyed. Then take off the shower cap and throw it away. Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and the child’s head with a shampoo. Wash the hair with shampoo twice or more to make the child’s hair completely clean. Many of the eggs will be eliminated after rinsing mayonnaise. But you still have to deal with the remaining eggs. Mayonnaise can not kill very young eggs because the lice have not been born and can not yet develop enough to need air. Even though the mayonnaise killed them, schools or kindergartens do not allow children to return until the eggs are eliminated.
An alternative lice remedy to mayonnaise you can use petroleum jelly and follow the same procedure. But keep in mind that the only way to get rid of petrol from the hair in this case is to use baby oil and scrub your hair completely to squeeze out everything you can. Then wash the hair three times with shampoo and warm water.
3. Vinegar – home remedy for lice
You can use vinegar to kill lice naturally, but its efficacy is partial. Vinegar is lethal only for lice that is not yet born or for younger ones. The results may vary. Vinegar eradicates a number of lice, but can only kill young ones who are unable to lay eggs. Do not believe who tells you that vinegar kills all lice: you will have negative results and you will think that vinegar is not effective against these parasites. The vinegar on the contrary is valid, but it only works for some of lice.
Vinegar works effectively with lice when it comes to their eggs in particular, otherwise known as larvae. One might wonder how and why vinegar is useful in this regard. The vinegar contains acetic acid that applies to the lice and the larvae helps to eliminate the colicity of the eggs that makes them glue on the hair.
You can use different types of vinegar for lice, such as the known vinegars in supermarkets: white vinegar, white or red wine vinegar, apple cider vinegar. The basic drill is to soak your hair in vinegar and cover your head with a shower cap or a piece of cloth. Leave vinegar for an hour, then shampoo the hair. Repeat for two to three days. Apple cider vinegar works as an excellent option for treating whatever lice you have in your hair.
The benefit of vinegar that it is a natural organic product of fruit, vegetables and cereals. It is therefore edible and biodegradable. As such, it is safe for the environment and for people, especially those with asthma, and even for children. It does not contain harmful toxic chemicals. Vinegar burns your eyes if sprayed directly, so avoid direct contact with your eyes.
The treatment with vinegar against lice is simple, natural and economical but it takes time and patience: it is done every day until the nits disappear completely. To get rid of the lice using vinegar therefore will require from two to four weeks.
Normally, vinegar is used to polish and soften your hair, but prolonged and frequent use may have the opposite effect, making the hair drier: during lice treatment, you can use masks and balms to prevent dryness and dehydration of the hair. Since vinegar is useful only in the case of young larvae and lice, it is preferable to use a specific lotion against lice for major infestations.
If you have red marks on the scalp or is irritated (this may happen if you have been infested for a while or if you have already used a shampoo to kill the lice), avoid pouring vinegar on your head as it may irritate your scalp too much.
4. White vinegar
White vinegar is distilled vinegar. It is light acetic acid in water or a simple chemical mix (usually very cheap) or obtained by fermentation of distilled alcohol. Generally it has a 5% acidity level. So this vinegar is sour and has a strong flavor. It costs less compared to other types of vinegar, and you can find it easily in grocery stores.
5. White wine vinegar
This type of flavored vinegar is light and is used for cooking. The color may vary from white to light gold and the acidity level is between 5% and 7%. It is made from the fermentation of true white wine and has kept so much of its original taste.
6. Red wine vinegar
It has been used for centuries for both medicinal and culinary purposes. The color may vary from light pink to deep red and the acidity level is between 5% and 7%.
7. Apple cider vinegar
Which apple cider vinegar choose for the lice? The best thing is to buy an apple cider vinegar that has not been filtered, pasteurized and made from organic apples. This is because most of the time they have a 5% acid concentration, which is what you need. A higher concentration would be dangerous to apply on the scalp, while a lower concentration would not be as effective to eliminate larvae from your hair.
8. Vinegar and wine
To eliminate younger lice and above all to get rid of larvae, a solution of white wine and vinegar can be prepared in equal parts. After the shampoo pour the solution of water and vinegar on the still wet hair, distributing it well over the hair; Wrap your hair in a plastic bag and let it work for about 10 minutes, then rinse your hair with water only. Finally, run a lice comb or a comb with teeth set very closely: be careful and try to comb all your hair, dividing it in sections; this way you will be able to remove the larvae that thanks to the action of the vinegar will adhere less with the hair.
9. Lemon juice and garlic
Mix lemon juice with a mashed garlic glove to create a natural head-lice-killing solution. Use this solution to hair at night and swipe your head with a shower cap or a piece of cloth. The odor of the solution will kill lice. Shampoo the hair in the morning to remove all dead lice. Repeat this for five consecutive nights.
10. Salt for lice
Common salt, too, can be used to eliminate lice. Take ¼ cup of salt with ¼ cup of vinegar and mix thoroughly. Transfer the mixture to an atomizer bottle and then spray the hair to be moist. Put on the cap and leave the mixture for about two hours. Then wash and nourish the hair. Repeat this in three days until you get positive results.
Strong smell of garlic will help strangle lice. Cut 10 cloves of garlic into the paste. Add 2-3 teaspoons of lemon juice to the paste. Mix well and apply it on your scalp. Leave for half an hour and then wash off thoroughly with warm water. Repeat the treatment in a few days until lice are eliminated.
12. Coconut mask
Thanks to the lauric acid content, coconut oil seems to have an effect on the fight against lice. To get the most out of this home remedy against lice, repeat the treatment three times a week for two weeks. This mask can be stored for about three months in a well-cleaned jar with lid. The ingredients you will need are: 85 grams of coconut oil, 15 grams of neem oil, 50 drops of essential lavender oil. In a bowl, mix the coconut oil with neem oil by using a spatula. Add essential lavender oil, stir it one last time and apply it on your hair. Leave on for at least thirty minutes, comb your hair with a lice comb and then proceed with shampoo. Do the last rinsing with a glass of white wine vinegar added to a liter of water.
Essential oils as home remedies for lice
13. Neem oil
The composition of the neem has two main functions: on the one hand the repellent ability that is given by the active principle, while on the other there are pharmacological and curative properties given by the presence of the nimbine, both triterpenoids. It also contains plant steroids such as campesterol, beta-sitosterol, sigmonterol. The excellent insect repellent capacity is applied in pediculous (lice) cases. Especially when children are affected, this treatment is natural, little invasive and extremely effective. You can find neem oil based commercial products or you can simply use it directly on the hair leaving it posing for at least 20 minutes without letting the louse breathe: so we can remove it by combing the hair with the special fine comb and rinsing the hair.
14. Andiroba oil – home remedy for lice
Andiroba oil is a vegetable oil obtained by squeezing the seeds of Carapa guianensis, native to the Amazon region of South America. Rich in oleic acid, stearic, palmitoleic, linoleic, miliacine and limonoids, it acts as antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and healing. Andiroba oil is applied to soothe insect bites, to scratch scars or wounds and to counteract the appearance of cellulite. It is also used to relieve muscle aches, against lice and to strengthen and regenerate weak hair, in some countries it is also used to prepare a useful herbal tea against cough and sore throat. As home remedy against lice, andiroba oil can be applied to hair directly or in composition of natural products. Soak your hair in the oil, put on a shower cap and wait for 5 hours before rinsing and combing through the hair.
15. Tea tree oil
To take full advantage of the tea tree’s anti-lice power, this essential oil (in the dose of a couple of drops) can be added to both the shampoo and the balm (in the case of medium-long hair). But tea tree oil is also one of the main ingredients of special natural spray used to prevent lice. The only drawback is that its pungent smell reminds strongly of gas. But, combined with other more fragrant essential oils, the tea tree is quietly accepted by the most sensitive individuals. Use tea tree oil in combination with shampoo to kill lice on a daily basis. Add 15 drops of tea tree oil to a bottle of shampoo and shake thoroughly. Pour out a small amount of shampoo to help with mixing. Use it on your hair for 5 to 7 days once a day.
16. Tea tree oil with lavender oil and olive oil
Brush gently through the hair with a mixture of 3 parts olive oil and 1 part lavender essential oil. You can first test on a small area to make sure there is no allergic reaction. Then put a bath cap over the child’s hair for at least 5 hours. Firstly, this is done to not oil everything in the house. Secondly, because it takes time for olive oil to work blocking the respiratory ways of lice, and they cannot hold the breath for more than 4 hours.
17. Water-distilled tea tree oil
After the first step is completed, it is time for rinsing. Mix 1 tablespoon (15 ml) of tea tree oil with 1 cup (2.5 dl) of water and massage into the scalp. It will peel off the eggs from the scalp. Then it’s time to pull a lice comb through the hair to get rid of all the eggs that are sitting on the hairline. And finally, wash hair with a natural shampoo.
18. Red thyme oil
Red thyme oil is primarily known for its stimulating and reconstituting action on the Nervous nervous system. It is useful in the case of physical and mental fatigue, headaches, asthenia. It improves memory and brain activity by combating insomnia and depression. But in addition to the above, oil of red thyme has an anti-parasitic action: it eliminates parasites of various types that affect the skin (scabies, lice, etc.) and cause dermatitis, which also has a healing action and intestinal (tapeworm). It can be applied directly to the hair for several hours. Let the mask stay on your hair under a shower cap, killing both lice and larvae. Process hair with a lice comb after rinsing.
19. Flaxseed oil
Flaxseed oil can be used with a sprayer to remove insects and diseases from our plants. Its properties being partially like those of white oils, it is capable of covering the insects preventing its breathing. Mixing flaxseed oil with essential oils capable of removing certain insects improves the effectiveness of the action.
20. Oregano essential oil
The essential oil of oregano is extracted by the steam distillation method of flowering summaries collected in summer. Oregano essential oil is amber color and has a liquid consistency. Evenly spread throughout the scalp removes lice and helps to slow down hair loss by stimulating regrowth. So eliminating lice with this oil will not only cause no side effects for the hair, but will actually have a spa effect.
21. Satureja oil
As a herbal plant, the sacrum is endowed with many properties such as: antiseptic, antispasmodic, carminative, expectorant, stimulating, stomachic. Its officinal infusion is used for hair; it fortifies the hair bulb and keeps the lice away. Fresh, crumpled leaves are applied to insect bites calm the pain. Small tissue bags containing steam heated salon can successfully treat dental pains, inflammations and cramps. Syrup is a good cure remedy. The charred essential oil is very used in the cosmetic field for the creation of perfumes and creams, while in alcoholic beverages it is used to aromatize liqueurs, especially vermouth.
22. Cajeput essential oil fo lice
Cajeput essential oil is an analgesic: if massaged on sore parts it performs an anti-inflammatory action, useful in the symptomatic treatment of headache, joint pain, arthritis, neuralgia and gout. Dissolved in the quantity of 2-3 drops in a teaspoon of honey, it can be used to counteract parasites, such as lice.
23. Soursoup oil
Guanabana, Graviola, Guyabano: the herb which is addressed in various ways has been talked about for years now, especially with regard to the alleged anticancer properties. Since it is also used in Asia, it is a big part of Philippines’s natural medicine. Here soursoup, as it is called, is used as an antispasmodic, emetic and sweat-stimulating medication. Decoction of leaves is also used to defeat lice and eliminate nits.
24. Grapefruit seeds oil
Grapefruit seed extract is derived from seeds and membranes of dehydrated fruit by various processes leading to the formation of new chemical bonds that act on a wide range of harmful microorganisms such as bacteria, fungi, viruses, yeasts, molds, and even parasites like worms and lice, in addition to protozoa such as amoeba, causes diarrhea and dysentery.
To use grapefruit seeds against lice, fill the bottle with the distilled water (available in the pharmacy), add 5 drops of fresh tea tree oil and vodka. The resulting mixture should be sprinkled three times a day over the scalp, hair, pillows, clothes and bedding.
How to mechanically remove head lice
- Locate the lice
In general, lice eggs (larvae) cause so much more trouble, since they cannot be killed until they reach a certain stage in their gestation. Therefore, they need to be taken out manually. The insects place their eggs at the root of the hair, especially behind the ears and the neck, and it is therefore there that you have to go looking for. An adult lice is difficult to detect, unless the infestation is already very advanced. Eggs, however, appear to be very numerous and, thanks to their clear heat, are more visible, especially on dark hair. They can be confused with dandruff; the substantial difference, which helps in the search, is that the dandruff can easily detach from the hair while the eggs remain firmly glued to it. The check should be done periodically on the hair of schoolchildren to find out early on a possible infestation and quickly remove the lice.
- Treat lice with a suitable product or any home remedy listed above
Once you have lice, you need to be treated with a suitable product. On the market there are different; it is advisable to have the pharmacist to choose the right choice. In general, it is preferable to choose formulations that can also suffocate larvae, in addition to adult louse, and it is important not to mix more than one product in one treatment.
- Rinse with water and vinegar
Vinegar does not remove lice, as our grandmothers sometimes told us. It is, however, very useful in the fight against unwanted guests as it dissolves the collagen that fixes the lenses to the scalp. Therefore, rinsing with water and vinegar after insecticide treatment will make the next step easier.
- Remove the eggs mechanically
Many anti-parasite treatments also suffocate the litters, but this does not spare you the necessity of having to remove them mechanically. It goes without saying that in the event that some of them survive, this will open up and will soon find ourselves with the head re-invaded by the lice. The mechanical cleansing of the nits is done with a tight tooth comb, passing it through the hair, at a distance less than 0.03 mm from the scalp, down to the chin. Combs are available in the pharmacy and there are also products on the market with a small magnifying glass that facilitates the research.
- Check daily
After the treatment, the hair search with the tight comb should be repeated every day, for at least a week, to eliminate, one after the other, and with much patience, those that have escaped.
- Repeat the treatment
To be sure you remove the lice, it is recommended that you repeat the treatment after a week or more. After the second treatment, also repeat the search for the eggs with the tight comb and check the scalp for a few days at least for another week. At this point, your fight with the lice should be crowned with success.
- Lice do not live long apart from the scalp.
In any case, to be sure to remove them, it is advisable to wash hats, scarves, sheets, blankets, towels, towels and other garments and furniture that may have been in contact with the person in the washing machine at 60 degrees. Lice, in fact, do not survive at this temperature. Combs and brushes, hair elastic, etc., should be washed with very hot water. Anything that cannot be washed with water should be treated with a hairdrier or closed in a plastic bag for 10/15 days.
On the market, there are lotions and shampoos based on one or more of these natural substances; they can be found in herbalists, pharmacies and drugstores; It is useful to ask a herbalist or pharmacist about the available products; There are, in fact, some products that, thanks to the synergic action among several natural active principles, are more effective than others. Remember, however, that natural is not synonymous with no side effects, so even when opting for these natural remedies against lice it is important to avoid eye contact and use them following the directions given on the packaging.
The after care and prevention
Comb your hair with a regular comb. Then use a comb that is specially designed to remove lice and eggs. You can buy it at the pharmacy in the department where lice shampoo is available. Since both lice eggs and lice themselves stick to the hair firmly, they can not simply be brushed out with a regular comb. Lice combs have dense teeth that allow you to thoroughly comb the hairs. The spacing between the teeth should not be less than 0.3 millimeters. It is best to comb wet hair over a sheet of white paper. Then it is easy to see if you managed to comb out the eggs. Hair should be combed for at least ten days until no lice and glands appear on the paper.
The comb itself is not a very effective way to get rid of lice and their eggs. Eggs are often so firmly attached to the scalp that they cannot always be removed with a comb. Electronic combs have already appeared on the market, which, through the use of electricity, kill lice. However, there is no evidence of their effectiveness.
Check the hair
When you are done with the treatment, use a good light to control your entire head when the hair is dry (it is easier to see the eggs when the hair is dry). The eggs are very small and shine in a certain way at a certain angle. The eggs are usually on the actual hairline, but the newest is just at the scalp and the older ones are about 2 – 2.5 cm from the scalp.
You will need to check the hair in small sections, especially around the hair edge, at the neck and behind the ears. However, they can be anywhere. If you find some eggs, you can remove them with your fingers, comb them with a comb or cut out the hairs that have eggs on them. Be sure to put all eggs and cut hairs in a bowl of vinegar or hot soapy water with an addition of ammonia.
If you see more than a pair of eggs, you can cover your hair with vinegar to clean your hair even more. Soak a towel in a mixture consisting of half vinegar and half water, wrap the child’s head with the towel and let it sit for an hour. Allow the hair to dry and then check it again to see if there are any eggs left.
Eyebrows and eyelashes
If there are eggs on the child’s eyelashes or eyebrows, you can lubricate and cover them with petroleum jelly that does not harm the child\s skin. Repeat application four times a day.
You will need to check the child’s hair every day to see if the eggs have been removed or if there are eggs left big enough to see. If an egg is left, another louse will be hatched and you will have to repeat the whole process again from the beginning because a single louse can add five to eight new eggs a day.
Clear lice from your home with these natural remedies
Do the washing
Wash all personal things to kill lice. Lice will die after 2 days no feeding, and eggs will die if they are not stored at room temperature for one week. Wash all clothes, bedding, fabric toys, hats and other items that the affected people were in contact with. Use hot water. Place all hair combs, brushes and accessories hair detergent in warm water for 10 minutes.
Blow dry hair on max heat
Blow dry you hair on the highest heat setting on your dryer for at least 20 minutes, paying special attention to the tips. Use the highest setting of your hair dryer to blow dry your hair brushes and accessories.
Use plastic bags with zipper for storing accessories
Keep the newly washed or clean items that have no lice on them. Put all clean items in a sealed plastic bag. This method continues to starve any remaining head lice and kill the newly hatched lice. Keep the things sealed for at least 4 days.
Do the vacuum cleaning
Vacuum your house to remove both eggs and grown head lice in the environment. Be sure to vacuum all the carpets and stuffed furniture head lice can live on. Immediately discard the vacuum cleaner bag and take it out of the house.
Never use a plastic bag to wrap you child’s hair, can pose a serious danger to choking to small children.
It is not advisable to use lotions or shampoo against lice for preventive purposes, even if they are natural. All these remedies, natural and not, are poorly effective in prevention; without relying on the fact that a massive use of such products can cause resistance of lice. Finally, even if the natural active principles are generally free of toxic effects on humans, it is good not to abuse them; be it as it may, these are special products, only to be used when needed. If homemade remedies against lice and eggs fail, go to a pharmacy and buy one of the lice products currently available on the market. In the case of intense lice, the best way to get rid of the sting is to cut the hair and nourish the skin. It is also worth disposing of the apartment, baby room, wash all clothes, and any combs and brushes drenched in alcohol or wash with very hot water.