For many parents, the back-to-school season is when a common fear begins to rear its ugly head again. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, it is currently estimated that six to twelve million lice infestations happen every year among children between the ages of three and eleven. Although the school nurse may do a lice checkup, it is possible that they may miss an early case. This means that there is a very real possibility that your child could pick head lice up at any time during their elementary school years. Since the fear of lice, or pediculophobia, can cause an array of debilitating symptoms, it is important to create an action plan now so that you can promptly handle and infestation.
Practice Preventative Measures
The best way to deal with head lice is to make it unlikely that they will ever touch your child's head, since lice removal is time consuming and complicated. Despite the myths, head lice cannot fly or jump from one head to another. Direct contact with another person or object that is infested is required for your child to be infected. Therefore, you will need to teach your child proper lice prevention methods such as to avoid sharing hairbrushes and hats with their friends. Advise them to keep their coats and other personal clothing in a locker or on a hook where it cannot touch anyone else's belongings.
Quickly Identify an Infestation
A case of head lice can get severe in a short period of time. For this reason, it is important to know the signs of an infestation. Head scratching and complaints of itching are common symptoms experienced by young children. You may also notice nits that look like little white specks on their hair when you are brushing. Unlike dandruff, nits will not move if you flick the hair. If your phobia is severe, take your child to a professional who can perform a lice check regularly so that you never have to worry about dealing with a full-blown infestation.
Know Where to Get Help
Starting head lice treatment at the first sign of a nit or live louse is essential for keeping the infestation from spreading through the whole house and your child's school. Treatment typically involves a combination of medicine and thorough combing with a special brush to remove every last nit. This part of the treatment can be traumatizing if you have a serious fear of lice, which means that you may need to take your child to a lice treatment center where professionals can remove the bugs using safe and reliable methods.
When head lice season is in full swing, you want to take a full-on approach to keeping those critters out of your child's head. By knowing the signs of an infestation and where to get help, you can keep a clear head as you take your child to get treated. For more information, visit http://heartlandhealthyheads.com or a similar website.