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How do I Choose the Best Head Lice Treatment?

Article Details
  • Written By: J.M. Densing
  • Edited By: R. Halprin
  • Last Modified Date: 28 October 2018
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2018
    Conjecture Corporation
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Head lice is a common and annoying problem, particularly among school-aged children. There are a range of head lice treatment options available to choose from; most people should be able to find one that suits their needs. When choosing the best head lice treatment, consider safety and effectiveness. Other factors to consider include the presence of pesticides or other chemicals versus natural ingredients as well as how how long the treatment process takes. Many treatments require more than one application to ensure complete eradication of the problem since they only kill live lice but not the eggs, which are also called nits, but there are a few options that are supposed to eliminate both.

They don't carry disease and are not considered to be dangerous, but head lice spreads easily in certain settings. The lice can travel from one person to another in locations such as schools where children often have their heads close together. They can also be found on the clothing, brushes, and bedding of an infested person and be transmitted when these items are shared. They are most common among school-aged children and their households, and head lice has nothing to do with an individual's personal hygiene. The lice live on the hair and scalp of the affected person and lay eggs at the base of the hair shaft, but they don't live long on other surfaces.

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Since this is such a common problem, there are a variety of head lice treatments available. Choosing the best head lice treatment is a matter of personal preference, although safety and effectiveness should be considered. Most treatments on the market have been found to be safe as long as they are used according to directions; some are more effective than others, however. Many topical lotions or shampoos contain pesticides to kill the lice, but some people may prefer to avoid these because of concerns about the chemicals. For those who are trying to lead a more natural lifestyle, there are several natural remedies available that work in a similar manner while using active ingredients derived from plant sources.

Its a good idea to choose the most effective head lice treatment possible, while keeping in mind that some of these options require a prescription and are more likely to irritate sensitive skin. This can make them a poor choice for individuals with certain skin conditions or allergies who may wish to try alternative options like heat treatments which kill the lice without applying any irritating substances. Another factor to consider is how long the treatment process takes; some treatments need to be left on the hair and scalp for longer than others plus the time consuming combing necessary to remove dead lice and nits afterward. If a treatment only kills live bugs, it will need to be applied at least twice — the second time to kill newly hatched lice from eggs that survived the first try. It might be worthwhile to find a treatment that kills eggs as well to possibly reduce the number of applications necessary to eliminate the problem.

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