HeadLiceRefresher f'or ElementaryParents
Myths Truths Myths Truths

Head lice are easy to get.

Lice are spread by direct head-to -head contact. They are much harder to get than a cold, the f1u, pink eye, or strep throat. With that said, approximately I in 100 children will have head live each year. Any nits (eggs) \ef't on the hair can lead to a re­ infestation of' head lice. Nits f'urther away than 1/4 inch f'rom the scalp have likely hatched and pose no additionalthreat.
Lice are of'ten passed through hats and helmets. Rare, but possible. Sharing hair brushes, towels, and bedding are more likely to spread head lice Nits can f'all out of' the hair, hatch, and cause spread to other individuals. Nits are cemented to the hair and very dif'f1cu\t to remove. Also, newly hatched larvae must f1nd a meal immediately or theyperish.

School is a common place f'or transmission.

School is a VERY RARE source of' transmission. Much more common is family members, overnight guests, and playmates that spend large amounts of' time together.

Lice can live a long time of'f' the head.

Lice live, at the most, 24 to 48 hours of'f' the head. Families with lice should focus most on proper treatment of' the head. Only recently word clothing, towels, and bedding needslaundered. Insecticide sprays are NOT recommended and can be dangerous. Vacuuming most f'requent\y used floors and f'urniture may help.
Head lice are a serious disease. Lice do not spread any known dis­ ease. They are annoying and anxie­ ty producing but cause no disease. Lice can f1y or jump f'rom one person to another. Lice only crawl. Further, they prefer to stay on thehead currently providing a f'reelunch.
.People with poor hygiene and lower income are at a higher risk f'or getting head lice. Anyone can get head lice, they just need a human host. A person can get head live f'rom pets. Animals do not carry human head lice. You can only get them f'rom another person.
HeadLiceRefresher f'or ElementaryParents
Myths Truths Myths Truths
Checking a classroom when one student has head lice can prevent lice from spreading. Classroom transmission is EXTREMELY RARE. Checkingevery student 1sheadis a waste of' valuable teaching time and would likely not find an earlycase. Checking family members and playmates is much more appropriate.

Boys do not get

head lice.

Some research indicates that more girls get head lice thanboys, but longer hair may be the contributing factor. Itis NOT recommended to cut hair simply because of' headlice.

There are products available that can be used to prevent head lice.

There is NO current scientific research supporting products to prevent lice. A voiding head to head contact and keeping long hair pulled back orina ponytail may bebeneficial.

Research finding resistance has on!y been conducted in a f'ew places in our country The current recommendation is to begin treatment with over-the-counter products *Treatment ftlilure of' over-the­ counter products may be related to not following all of' the directions,such


Ihave heard that over-the-counter head lice products no longer work. I. The product may advise not to use shampoo or conditioners f'or a period of'time 2. The product might require a second treatment a f'ew days later
Once present, it is very dif'flcult to get rid of' lice. There are new prescription products that have proven to be both safe and very ef'fective f'or eliminating lice. The school nurse can help you use your time and money wisely in regard to headlice. *All ftlmily members andclose contacts, including blended ftlmilY members, need to be checked and if' lice are present, treated at the sametime *People o-Pten mistake other things (like dandruf'f') f'or nits.
*Prescription products are available if' needed
Thingsthatparents candoto assist

withthe preventionof'the spread of' headlice:

Frequentlymonitorthe heads of' young childrenfor signs of' head lice (nits present at the nape of' the neck or above the ears)) especially if' children are displaying symptoms of' itchyscalp. Report cases of' head lice to the school nurse. The school nurse is happy to assist and provide information about new ef'-Pective products for elimination of' headlice.
Inform parents of' your child)s playmates if' they have been exposed to head lice. Above all) remain calm and remember head lice do not spread any known disease
Helpful websites include: https:/ /identify.us.com/ https:/ /identify.us.com/idmybug/head-lice/head-lice-FAOS/index.htmlhttp://www.kdheks.gov/c-f'/headlice.htmhttps://www.cdc.gov/parasites/lice/head/index.html