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It's So Lice to See You Go!

I’m not going to pretend like I know what I’m doing when it comes to lice. I’m still freaked out by the little critters even though one hasn’t been seen around these parts since Thursday morning. It turns out that when it comes to things that everyone has advice on? Lice treatment is one of them. I thought there were a lot of opinions on how to send yourself in to labor or how to get your milk to come in, turns out there’s just as many (and some just as crazy) as the ones I tried to get my babies here or my milk out.

I started with a prescription product that wasn’t exactly natural or child friendly, the word ‘neurotoxin’ was seen several times in my research. Wanting to skip as many harsh chemicals as possible but still kill the little critters led me to mouthwash and vinegar. Other methods like mayonnaise and olive oil were suggested, but with Addie’s curly hair and dislike of water in her face I figured the heavier salad dressing ingredients weren’t the best to start with.

I did use the prescription cream rinse on day one. I washed her hair and slathered it in the pinkish goo and let it sit for ten minutes. I then went through the first of seven (SEVEN) nitpicking sessions. I got a lot of adult bugs out with the first but I noticed that some were still moving. No good bugs, no good. Later that night I combed through her hair again only to find a bunch more bugs that were still very much alive. We were both exhausted so I sent her to bed with a resolve to start fresh in the morning.

Thursday morning I dumped an entire bottle of original (gold colored) Listerine on her head, wrapped it all up in plastic wrap, topped it with a shower cap and plopped her in front of classic Tom and Jerry for 2 hours. (Judge her TV viewing habits on this particular day and I will MAIL LICE TO YOU.) After two hours I took the plastic wrap off to find dozens more lice, only this time they were dead. We washed out her hair and again, I combed through every last strand picking out the bugs and nits. Later that night I combed through again and found some nits but no bugs. NO BUGS!

Friday morning I decided to try vinegar to help dissolve the nit glue as her school has a ‘nit-free’ policy before she could return, besides, it’s just common sense to get all remnants of bugs out of your child’s hair. The vinegar only stayed in for a few minutes and smelled awful. She complained of it stinging (she has super dry skin) and being stinky but she was a trooper. We washed it out, and again, I combed through her hair picking out every last nit I could see. I didn’t find a single bug. Whee! We dropped her off at school where the nurse did a complete check of her own and deemed her eligible to return.

Saturday I combed through again and today I washed her hair (which still has a slight vinegar odor, if anything is going to keep bugs away it’s that) and did a complete combing again and didn’t find any evidence of nits or lice. *phew* We’ve all been using a spray with rosemary and tea tree oil in it to prevent any bugs hopping on board our follicles and we all sort of smell like eau de roast chicken with the liberal use of rosemary.

The biggest news is that as of today, there is no evidence of lice. I’ll check her again each day for another two weeks and after that I’m clocking out of the lice game for a bit. (Then again, I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to just let her hair “go” without checking it obsessively at least once a week if not more. *sigh*

Post Traumatic Lice Infestation Stress. I have it.

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  • Terminator Nit Comb 1 of 5
    Terminator Nit Comb
    The Terminator Metal Lice Comb from Fairy Tales can be found at Toys R' Us locations and online. The plastic comb that came in our kit was stupid and clogged with bugs on the first sweep through. Do yourself a favor and find one of these before you actually need it.
  • Original Listerine 2 of 5
    Original Listerine
    Someone on twitter suggested Listerine so I asked Google about Listerine and lice. Sure enough the menthol smelling gold colored original Listerine was touted as an effective way to kill lice. A full description on the Listerine method for killing lice can be found here.
  • White Vinegar 3 of 5
    White Vinegar
    Vinegar supposedly helps dissolve the glue lice use to attach the nits to the hair shaft. 48 hours later and I wouldn't want to live in Addie's hair either, it still smells like salad dressing.
  • Zippity Doo’s 4 of 5
    Zippity Doo's
    Leave in detangler and lice prevention. We are now using this everyday before she leaves for school and also used it on the baby's hair while Addie was going through treatment. Contains rosemary and tea tree oil, both scents that repel lice and other bugs.
    Zippity-Doo's can be found online here.
  • Cetaphil Face Cleanser 5 of 5
    Cetaphil Face Cleanser
    I haven't had to resort to the Cetaphil method of smothering lice but if anymore show up this will be next on my list of things to try. The idea is to saturate the hair and scalp with Cetaphil and blow dry it to cement in the bugs and smother them. Shampoo it out 8 hours later and then pick nits out.
    A full description on the Cetaphil method can be found here.

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Read more from Casey on her blog, twitter and facebook.

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