Got Lice? Your Pharmacist Can Help

lice

Lice have always been a problem, especially among school aged children.

There’s no love for the lowly louse and the word has long been used to describe unsavoury characters. Lice can spread like wildfire from one head to another and before too long, every kid in a class or a daycare can be afflicted with the pesky little parasites. No one wants their child’s hair to become home to lice and there’s a definite social stigma associated with the problem. Fortunately, lice are usually harmless though admittedly pretty disgusting.

The best way to deal with lice is to prevent an infestation from happening. Schools are usually pretty good about informing parents when there’s outbreak of lice in a class. Parents should tell their children not to share anything that comes into contact with the hair including:

  • Combs and brushes
  • Hair bands and elastics
  • Headsets and ear buds
  • Towels
  • Hats
  • Scarves

If there is a lice outbreak, ask your children to avoid head to head contact with their friends, for example, when playing games. It’s also a good idea to have them keep their personal belongings out of common areas in the school like shared lockers, coat rooms, and cubbies. Lice can easily travel from one child’s belongings to another’s.

Contrary to popular belief, lice often don’t cause an itchy head and if they do it can be months after they’ve taken up residence in your child’s hair. Check your child’s hair regularly, especially behind the ears or at the nape of the neck for lice or their eggs. Unlike dandruff, lice eggs or nits are firmly attached to the hair and don’t fall off if scraped with a finger nail.

If you discover that your child has lice, a trip to the doctor might be in order.

There are several over the counter treatments made from chrysanthemum extracts or synthetic copies that kill live lice very effectively. They won’t kill eggs, however so it’s important to stick with the course of treatment outlined in the package.

If your child has lice, visit the Medicine Shoppe Crowfoot for information and products that will rid you or your child of the pesky and embarrassing problem.

Written by Randy Howden. Visit me on

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