Wednesday, November 12, 2014

You are the devil!!!! (and the steps to take care of it)

The dreaded word that parents don't like to hear, and most of all don't like to have to admit or say -- LICE!!

I have had my fair share of the lice experience.I had it 3 times as a child myself. And the first time, my mother felt my long hair was the problem and chopped it all off. I was devastated and never got over it. And now I have 3 girls of my own with long thick hair.

A few years ago, I noticed my oldest daughter was infested. She was about 8 yrs old, and she was at the beginning of her "I want to bath myself" phase. She had been scratching a lot, but each time I checked, it was just dry scalp or she didn't wash her hair very well, so I stopped worrying for a little bit.  BIG mistake!!! I forced her to let ME wash her hair one night, because she was itching so bad it was knotting up her hair. Holy moly!!  It looked like someone dumped sand on her head.

I panicked and freaked and called for my husband to come verify what I was seeing. I also immediately started texting all my friends and family because we had her BD party just the night before and everyone was sharing dress up clothes & hats. OH NO!!!! (luckily it didn't pass to anyone else)   Well this went on & off for about 1-2 months. I pulled her out of school several times and never once did the nurse at school check her upon her return, or did we get a letter home about it. I spoke with her teacher who seemed to be puzzled but not real concern. (this is the same teacher/classroom we got it from this time as well - hmmmm)  REALLY???
I remember when I was in school and a child got lice, every kid in that class had to be checked daily for a few days, the classroom was scrubbed down, and noticed were sent home to warn other parents. I realized, that its become so common now, that school no longer really take responsibility for it?? UGH

Here we are, 3 yrs later, and its happening again. Luckily though, my now 7yr olds, still allow me to shampoo their hair, so I am always checking them to catch it early.  But it was about 11pm last night, Ava comes down to see when I am going to bed. She mentions that her head has been itching a lot lately.  So I check her and it didn't take long for me to see that she had lice!
I immediately jumped into action. I found the lice shampoo in the cabinet. Its expired, but its better then nothing right?  We also have this lice repellant shampoo still, so after the treatment, I used that on her. I then put this hair product on it to help your hair become smooth and soft, hoping the greasy-ness from it would help the bugs not be able to attach.
Luckily she had a very mild case, but still........I HATE LICE!!!!!

So, for any moms out there who have not had to deal with this yet, here are the steps to take if your child has lice. And you must move on it ASAP.

1 - Buy a lice treatment shampoo like Rid or NIX or any store brand, and apply as directed, right away.

2 -  Once the shampoo treatment is done, this is when you will have to sit there for hours and tediously go through your childs hair to get out all of the bugs and/or eggs you see. Most kits come with a comb, however, I find that my own nails or tweezers work better..

3 - You will need to strip all bedding the child has laid on in the last week or so, and clothes, jackets, hats, even stuffed animals......and wash them in hot water cycle.

4 - Once bedding is stripped, use a lice bedding treatment spray. If you do the bed stripping in the morning, you can spray the beds and pillows a few times throughout the day, as long as its dry for bedtime.

5 - Follow up the entire family for about a week with the lice repellant shampoo. We cant use this for too long, as it dries out our hair really bad, but it helps.

From here, you just have to check your child on a daily basis until there is no more lice. 

For moms, if you are due to have a color change of your hair, now would be the time to do it. Hair dye also kills them.  

Until you know its all gone, for girls, a good hair style to try would be a tight bun with a hairspray helmet. This will help keep any new ones out and prevent it from transferring to other people as well.
Boys, if they will let you, your best bet is to just shave their heads.

Also, if you find yourself in a bind, money wise, another option I tried, which actually DOES work, is to use Suave coconut shampoo. Oddly enough, it paralyzed the live bugs, so they are easier to remove. And it smells MUCH better. 
Hope this helped some of you parents out there who have yet to experience this. LICE SUCKS!