I sent out a blog alert on this itchy topic one year ago…almost to the very day. We have it in our building….along with strep, the stomach virus, a respiratory virus and influenza.
Head lice is the safest thing to catch of all those listed above…yet it creates more anxiety due to it’s social stigma and common misunderstandings.
If you receive a letter via email or backpack delivery stating that there is head lice in your child’s classroom, please check your ALL of your CHILDREN’S HEADS. There are directions on how to do this below. Also, read on….
TRUTHS about head lice:
- Medical term: pediculosis capitis
- Louse = 1; Lice = more than one.
- Lice DO NOT JUMP. They crawl.
- Lice spread through close contact–hats, combs, brushes, etc.
- Lice can live 2-3 days off the body.
- Nit is the name for a louse egg.
- A louse will lay 6 eggs per day.
- A nit can live up to 10 days off the body.
- Lice are killed quickly with treatment.
- Nits require daily combing and inspection daily for 3 weeks.
- Lice do not discriminate. They love scalps of all income levels, culture backgrounds and social economic status.
The ACTION PLAN:
- DO NOT PANIC.
- Do not PANIC YOUR CHILD.
- Check your child’s hair immediately and carefully. If you find lice, determine a treatment plan by calling your doctor. Notify the school. CLEAN all surfaces that your child would come into contact with: sheets, pillows, blankets, stuffed animals, clothing. Keep your child home until there is no evidence of lice or nits. School procedure: Lice Protocol
- Even if your child is lice free, please wash ALL winter clothing with hot water and dry in hot dryer.
- Educate your child to not share hats, scarves, brushes, etc. Keep hats, mittens, scarves in backpacks at school.
- Monitor your child for excessive scratching of head.
We have three kind, sensitive and careful school nurses people (Mrs. Reagan and Mrs. Ripley and Mrs. Nurenberg) who will check your child’s head as needed! Know that if we suspect your child has been exposed to head lice or is showing signs of head lice, we will contact you and check your child privately and in a very dignified way.
Links to videos you may or may not find helpful:
I want to end with an educational and humorous video on this rather itchy topic.