Culture & Entertainment

Is your kid at risk of "super lice"?

By: Stephanie Zolis
Canadian Living
Culture & Entertainment

Is your kid at risk of "super lice"?

By: Stephanie Zolis

Your kids' classmates could put them at risk

Back when I was a kid, if a classmate was found to have lice, the rest of our scalps would be inspected and patient one would miss a day of school. He'd get shampooed and return to class the next day, and primary school life would resume as normal. But over the years, lice have evolved and grown resistant to traditional treatments, ushering in a new generation of "super lice," which is increasingly more problematic for parents and schools to annihilate, according to a University of Massachusetts Amherst study published in the Journal of Medical Entomology. You see, improper use of over-the-counter head lice treatments, like pyrethrin- and permethrin-based products, can lead to resistance. That means when too little of the product is used and existing lice remain following the application, they adapt and become increasingly resistant to chemicals as they continue to get passed on from child to child. Researchers looked at genes of lice across Canada and the U.S. from 2007 to 2009, and tests found that 99.6 percent of lice were resistant to chemical treatments. Meanwhile, one Harris poll found that 60 percent of parents weren't able to remove their kids' lice with just one application of over-the-counter product; they either required two or more treatments, or weren't able to resolve the problem without additional resources. What other methods are available to parents? According to the Mother Nature Network, certain home remedies—like tea tree oil—are more effective at ridding these parasites from your child's scalp, while hot air (used at lice-removal salons) and prescription products can also do the trick. (Photo courtesy Stockvault)
Share X
Culture & Entertainment

Is your kid at risk of "super lice"?

Login