What are your tips for preventing and treating lice?

Lice is incredibly common in kids ages 3 to 12, especially girls. What precautions can you take to help prevent it and what are your tips for treating lice once your kids have it?

40  Answers

16 0

Like Cris Brooks I spray my kids hair with a solution of tea tree oil and water, I also add a couple of drops of lavender oil to the mix. Using this spray we have been nit free for about 2 years.

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0 5

You do this when nits have been present? If you do this as a daily routine, doesn't it make your children's hair look greasy? Just curious as I just went through 3 months of nits in my 11 year olds head....ugh!!!!

1 27

Spray her hair with tea tree oil and water before sending her to school.

7
2 3

to get rid of it cheaply this is what I do, mix methylated spirits with just enough conditioner so that its a little thicker and doesn't run everywhere, smother the hair, cover in plastic and leave them playing computer games for 15 minutes while they 'cook'. Wash it out, comb out the dead (and they are DEAD DEAD DEAD) lice, repeat a few days later and a few days later after that if you want to be sure. Follow up every now and then to ensure there is no further outbreaks. Bonus... their hair is super soft and shiny afterwards. You must mix it with the conditioner though because the metho is strong and it makes their eyes water otherwise. ITS THE BOMB!!! Cheap, safe and effective.

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0 10

Im just curious...what is methylated spirits

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2 21

My twins suffered from this for months the first time they came home with lice. I tried every treatment out there, even buying some African wood chips (I forgot the name) and soaking them to make a spray & hair soak. I covered their hair in mayonnaise and wrapped it in plastic wrap for two hours (yuk). I did tea tree oil, neem oil, lavender, you name it, I tried it - including Rid & Nix. I was desperate. I shudder to think how much money I spent trying to rid them of lice.

I was able to get rid of them once and for all but it took about 1 month of diligence. The products I used are the following:
-QuitNits treatment product
-Nit Terminator comb
-Magnifying head gear with a light (the kind that hobby shops sell)
-Fairytales Repel spray

Here's what I did:
Even though it says it's a "no comb" treatment, after treating them, I went through their hair thoroughly with the lighted magnifier & the comb. The magnifier really helps you see every single strand of hair. Keep a pair of tweezers on hand to grab any eggs the comb misses. I also kept a roll of paper towels to wipe the comb on and a bowl of ammonia to put the used paper towels in to ensure the bugs don't start crawling around or jump to anyone else's head. I soaked their brushes in ammonia, then rinsed them thoroughly.

I only washed their hair once or twice a week. I also used a flat iron on their hair every couple of days as well during this period, which I do think may have helped destroy the remaining eggs I couldn't remove with the comb. I know it can damage hair but it's only short term and better to kill the lice and have a few split ends. Every day I did their hair in a tight french braid or bun and sprayed it with the repel spray daily (I also sometimes used the prevention spray that came with the quitnits product but like the smell of the fairytales product better).
I repeated the process every week for a month. I didn't really wash their sheets & pillows any more than my normal laundry schedule however we do already have bed bug blocking pillow covers & mattress covers since I live in NYC and am paranoid about the bed bug epidemic.

They were lice free for about two years when it came back. I did the same treatment and once again they have been lice free for about 8 months now. I lightly mist their hair with the repel spray daily and never allow them to go to school with their hair down - always in a ponytail, braid or bun (something I was lax on after the first treatment). Knock on wood I will not have to deal with that a third time. I don't think anyone can ever 100% prevent getting lice but this seems to be a good plan of attack in treating it if and when it does pop up.

5
0 0

Nip pick nit pick nit pick. You HAVE to comb out the nits diligently after treating for lice. I am going to try the lavender idea, we hate the smell of tea tree oil. I do keep my daughter's hair in a ponytail now, spray her backpack and jacket with lice repellant, and she has not gotten reinfested. It's a big problem at her school.

3
0 6

i just use conditioner and a nitty gritty comb best thing on market

3
0 19

Fairy Tales Hair Care Rosemary Repel Products...prevent head lice. We have been lice free for over 8 years.

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4 34

Where do you get it???

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0 18

We had our first experience with lice last year. It has been an experience!! First I would like to say that some parents just don't understand what has to be done to get rid of them in your home. You cannot just treat the hair, you have to treat the bedding, the rug, the furniture and even their stuffed animals (we have so many of them though that we just quarantine the stuffies for two weeks so the little buggers dessicate). We do use the Rid and have been successful so far but I do not like using it. I was going to begin treating my daughter once a week with Rid as a precaution but my friend warned me against it as this is creating the 'super lice' that are resistant to these treatments. Her advice for using the Tea Tree Oil is to use it right out of the bottle, completely coating the scalp and the hair all the way out to the ends, wrap the head in plastic or use a shower cap and a ponytail holder, and let you child sleep in it overnight. This will smother all of them, but you have to get all of the hair to make this successful. Once the lice emerge in school that's what she starts treating with.

Also, I'm so happy that some of you have schools that actually inform you when a child has been found to have lice. Unfortunately our school feels it's a breach of confidentiality to inform the classroom that a child has been found with lice. We continually have this argument with them that if they would just let us know when the first case is found we could prophylactically treat our child so she wouldn't be sent home from school. And it's nice to find that we're not the only family who has been dealing with this issue. It's a tough thing to deal with because you have to be so vigilant with keeping your kids checked.

Best of luck everyone.

3
0 36

First one i have read that made a very good point...You cannot just treat the head...You MUST treat the whole house! You can wash the hair with any product but if it is in the bed/coach/clothes... you will get it again. Also, in our school they always send a note home stating if a child has had lice...all it states is if it was in the grade or in the classroom...no other info.

0 33

I have tea tree oil mixed into my children's shampoo and also in the spray bottle that I use in the morning and so far my children have not had lice :)

3
16 13

First of all I use T-gel on thekids heads 2 or 3 times a week during the school year since that is when they sseem to get it the most. The T-gel has a like a Balnatar in it that lice dont like. I clean their heads with plain old yellow Listerine. Saturate their head with listerine and wrap heads with plastic wrap. I do this about every other month just to keep the eggs from attaching themselves. Its been a year since we had them (knock on wood,lol)

3
16 13

The lIsterine is for when u find nits. It really works and is sooo much cheaper than lice shampoo. Plus new reports say new strains of lice are stronger than lice killing shampoo`s are.

1 16

A very simple preventative measure I have found is to spray an overlay of hairspray over their hair b4 leavin n the mornings. Not a whole lot, just an all over mist. It has worked for us for 2yrs now. The absolute best treatment is liceMD for us! But I do know a very cheap treatment that our head start informed us of.....a mixture of mayonnaise, vinegar and a little tea tree oil, mix it up and smother ur child's head with it then cover with a plastic shower cap or plastic wrap and let it stay on for 15minutes or so. Rinse out then wash hair and comb through THOROUGHLY to get all the eggs out. It works well.

2
1 20

Neem oil (natural product sold at nurseries works great) mix with a little regular shampoo (trader joes tea tree shampoo) leave on head as long as you can and hour is good cover with plastic, use good condition and pet flea comb to get out nits and eggs, check hair all the time, wash everything..
good to keep hair in braids or with gel or hairspray.

Next time I will try the listerine though! Kids don't like the nutty smell of Neem to much.
Hate lice!

2
11 0

I use Rosemary essential oil mixed with water and spray my kids hair down in the morning. The scent is not as strong as tea tree and it's a natural alternative to the poisons they sell to kill the lice/nits. I really try to stay away from applying insecticides on my children.. seriously, think about it. How about getting a can of Raid and applying to their heads.... wrap them in plastic wrap and then may use the blow dryer to heat it up and open up their pores so the toxins penetrate the scalp.. (yes, I'm being sarcastic). But, all of these marketers make these toxins appear safe and 'kid' friendly.. they aren't, they're poison.

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16 28

I completely agree with you, as an Aromatherapist, i cringe at the thought of all the chemicals being put onto our kids heads. Rosemary essentil oil mixed with water sprayed onto hair is a perfect treatment, Kids smell lovely too.

29 9

Tea tree shampoo at bath time and water-soluble tea-tree oil combed through the hair before school. Works inside a week!

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4 14

We have used the LiceMd, in addition to everything else I have ever read.. ok maybe exagerating.. Most we always braid my daughters long, think hair, I have been using this slightly oily anti frizz product, its Garnier and it has some herbal stuff in it, after bath I put a squirt on and work it through her hair and then every day before school with her fresh braid, I use Aussie Sprunch Spray and spray it all over her hair, braid. Seems to be working. I understand the critters don't like hair product and prefer clean hair with no "stuff" in it.
I have read to treat the critters you can use Extra Strength Head and Shoulders Shampoo, has some chemical in it they don't like, we've used it. Coconut shampoo and conditioner (cheap Suave brand) and they dont like that either. We have it ready, haven't tried it but rinsing the head in Listerine and letting it sit on the head with a shower cap. I worry about the alcohol being absorbed into the scalp, but if I ever get desperate enough I may just try it. My oldest daughter seemed to get it every year about the same time, the mats came out at school. Was traumatic and terrible. We leaned on the Tea Tree oil in the shampoo then. She is now 20. My youngest (she is 7) just had her first (I pray only) case of it, and first time ever I got it too. Worst experience EVER!!! All I can say is thank heavens I had adults around that could help me with mine. And of course vacuum every day, I even vacuum the beds, hot dry all the pillows, bedding on high at least 30 minutes. (I was so fanatical, I even took the vacuum hose to my own head..) Crazy I know! But I really hate the little buggers. I also pick her head at least, if not twice a day. Luckily we seem to catch it pretty early and don't have the really bad cases, like I have seen on the internet. But even one live one will send me into crazy cleaning mode. Lice Free is good too, all natural. Smells like licorice, can leave it in the hair.
Good Luck to you all.

2
0 1

I have used coconut shampoo and my kids still got lice. I have had best results with tea tree oil.

7 20

First of all, the RID like things don't work well at all. The combs are horrible and the lice are pretty well immune to the stuff. Here's what actually works. We used LiceMD, which is basically a liquid silicone with a glue loosener. Their comb works VERY well. Have everyone treat their head. EVERYONE in the house. Then you have an adult comb through everyone's hair very very carefully. Even if they have a very thick head of hair, like my daughter, try and look at every centimeter of scalp to pull out the nits. This may take several hours. Take all sheets/blankets/pillows to the laundromat. Wash them and then dry them on HIGH heat for at least 30 minutes. Do all of this again in two weeks because of the life cycle of the louse. http://www.licemd.com/images/lice-life-cycle.gif

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0 10

LiceMD is great! It is silicone so it can be very oily, but it doesn't have any chemicals that harm people in it. The products like RID and NIX that have chemicals in them don't work well and damage the scalp and gave me horrible headaches. You have to comb through the hair and pick all the nits out to truly get rid of them. I look through my kids hair quite often to keep on top of the situation also. Also, use one of the nit combs like the Terminator comb or the Licemeister. They work well, the plastic cheap ones don't work that great. If anyone likes Melaleuca products, I sprayed my hair with the Solumel, let it sit and I was able to comb out the nits so easy. I think it has something in it to loosen the glue from the nits.

8 27

There is nothing that you can do to prevent lice, as hygiene has nothing to do with getting them. I suppose you can have your child use tea tree oil shampoo, but what young girl wants her hair to smell like that?

As a cure, tea tree oil works wonders. The chemical treatments are very dangerous to children (they are poison!). Tea tree oil is effective in killing the live lice, but then you must comb out the nits. It is necessary to repeat the process. At least you would be doing it with something natural, though.

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2 7

I add a little tea tree oil to my regular shampoo. Yes it sticks to high heaven when there hair is first washed, but once their hair is dry you can no longer smell it. So far it has worked great for us.

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3 3

Tea Tree shampoo and conditioner :))) and we mixed Tea Tree oil in a spritzer bottle with water and sprayed our heads with this 3 times a day (on dry hair) We had lots of lice, there was an epidemic at my daughter's school and we all got them, annoying little buggers LOL we tried all sorts of commercial brands and the lice only came back, until we discovered Tea Tree oil and our problems were solved finally :)
Also make sure everything is washed thoroughly (bed spreads, towels, pillow slips, we threw out pillows and bought new ones, plushed animals, anything that the child or whoever is infested for that matter, sleeps or rests their heads on, steamed cleaned all fabric chairs, anything and everything our heads leaned on.. we cleaned away or threw out such as hairbrushes and combs, pillows, etc..

The tea tree oil/water mix doesn't make the hair look greasy at all, place about 12 drops in a spritz bottle!

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0 25

My girls have really long hair they are 7 and 4 and have never had head lice I put this down to the fact that I put their hair up everyday.

1
0 9

fill a squirty bottle with condictioner,tea tree oil and water.Every morning before school spray your childs head with it.The only time my girls have had lice is when we have forgotten to spray them

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7 12

Where do you get the tea tree oil?

0 0

what i do aqnd it always works, i put cooking oil on the hair and leave it in for an hour this way the lice cant grip onto the hair and the lice also suffercate in oil as its so thick....when you come to wash your childs/ren hair make sure you use washing up liquid, it wont harm the hair at all, and you will be given 99% clearance of lice.. ive used this method and it seems to be the best way...

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0 37

I use 100ml Spray bottle filled with water then i add 8 drops Tea Tree Oil, 7 Drops Eucalyptus,10 drops Rosemary, 25 drops essential oil solubiliser..... Havent had Lice since using this remedy

1
0 37

To reat lice when they have them i use 3 drops Rosemary, 2 drops Patchouli, 1 drop Ylang Ylang, 4 drops Tea Tree & 50ml of Base Oil e.g Macadamia Oil,Grapeseed Oil or Almond Oil. Dampen hair with oil & massage into scalp, leave i overnight. ( place old towel over pillow to prevent stain) Shampoo out next morning then remove lice & eggs with Lice comb.. WORKS BETTER THAN BOUGHT STUFF & COSTS LESS :)

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0 0

We use Listerine (the yellow colored one) for treating our kids. I found this little trick when I was researching a safer way to treat for head lice. I went out and bought a metal head lice comb set, that works wonderfully. We saturate the hair with the Listerine and let it sit on their heads for 20-30 mins, with a bag on their head. Then we wash and use a detangler to help get the comb through their hair. Our one daughter has very curly and thick hair so it is a nightmare to deal with head lice on her. To prevent I took a spray bottle and spray their backpacks and hats and coats once a week, or when their is an outbreak at school. We haven't had head lice in our home for 4 or 5 years now. This seems to be the cheapest way we could find, and I always have some on hand for in case we need it.

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0 32

I found along with combing and checking their head, use blow dryer on high heat and a hair straightener and fry the little buggies to death! Figured this out after dealing with it waaaay too many times.

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0 6

Were can u get the tea tree oil n lavender at is there a spasific place or just any were ?

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0 18

You can actually get Tea Tree Oil in the Dollar Store. It's in the African-American hair section because they use it as a scalp treatment I believe. It's fairly inexpensive and works and it's a great addition to your hair-care regime.

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11 17

Put a couple of Tea Tree oil drops in the shampoo you squirt in your hand.

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0 18

This is what I've started doing. Our school just got hit with lice again and my daughter had them. Now the battle is on at our house to keep them out.

1 13

Make sure your children are not sharing headphones at school for listening station, computer, or anything else. As a teacher, I require that children bring their own headphones (no earbuds since they do much more damage to hearing). This, and sending the children to the nurse consistently, who then contacts parents, sends home nit combs, and information has helped us get rid of lice in our classroom (for now). I don't doubt it'll come back from home, but this will help prevent it from spreading. Thankfully, my African-American students aren't subject to the head lice we have here in the U.S., but all other children are. By the way, our nurse at school said she's never found a teacher to have them (of course, I had her check me). When my kids brought home lice from a neighbor years ago, only the 2 youngest had them (6 on my son and about 20 on our daughter.) I think it's less common for adults to get them based on our habits. I used mayo with plastic wrap on their heads, vinegar, and the nit comb. IN addition, I washed down furniture, bedding, stuffed animals, etc...Not fun at all!
I like the tea tree oil, water, & lavender oil idea, but my children don't like the smell of tea tree oil at all. Right now, they aren't in a school where it comes up really. For my students at school, I will suggest that though.

1
0 0

Easiest and most cost effective treatment, a bottle of YELLOW LISTERINE and a good nit comb. Just saturate the head, wrap for 2-3 hours,wash,condition and comb out anything you find.The hardest part is decontaminating your home.You will need extra laundry detergent,some rubbing alcohol,Head and Shoulders shampoo, a spray bottle, large zip lock garbage bags.You must collect all linens, towels. and clothing by all and wash thoroughly. Let your children sleep on just a flat and fitted sheet with only one pillow and their lovey for the next two nights.Use your garbage bags to store all their stuffed animals. bean bags, bedspreads, pillows, decorative home and couch pillows, area rugs, basically everything made of fabric. Store these in your garage and wash as you can get to them. Once they are washed, just store them in the closets for a few days.
With the pillows and massive amounts of stuffed animals, all it takes is 30 minutes in the dryer on High Heat and it will kill the lice and any eggs on these items.With the rubbing alcohol, place your nit comb, ponytail holders, and any hairbrush your child uses or you use on your child (hairbrush for only 15 minutes at most or the alcohol will eat up the coating of the hairbrush).This is great to pour into a large cup, half alcohol, half water. You can decontaminate all of these items very easily by letting them soak for about 15 minutes. Since I reuse the cups for their brushes, etc., I just cover the cups with saran wrap and a rubber band so it doesn't evaporate over the next few days.Any other items that cannot be dried or put in alcohol like very nice headbands and cute little animals that can't take the dryer,just throw in the freezer in a large ziplock bag overnight along with your childs backpack, I freeze my daughters backpack for the entire week every day she gets home from school.Spray every seat and headrest in your car with the Listerine for a few days. Spritz Listerine and hairspray hair everyday before school.

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3 0

I have been looking on to find things out as well...i have looked everywhere to find out about these pests. From what i have read when the eggs hatch it takes them 8-20 days to be mature enough to lay eggs. So please tell me if you think I am right in thinking that - if every week for a month I treated with listerine or whatever (without combing out the nits- because I don't have someone to do it for me and I can't do it myself) then any that have hatched would be dead so there would be no more to be able to lay eggs? what do you think? Also after washing bed linens and such. Ya know...like you treat the first time (all lice are dead but eggs may still hatch), 7 days later..treat again to kill lice that have hatched since last treatment (lice eggs hatch in about 7-10 days and take 8-20 days to be able to lay eggs)...and then do it 2 more times within the next 2 weeks, should be good to go right?

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3 10

All great advice but anyone have a good experience with killing the eggs(besides the 3 hrs a day for 2 weeks of combing) so far I have only seen 91% alcohol. Just got thru reading...no one seemed to mention Tea Tree Oil is FLAMMABLE - I bought a bottle and bottle list it as flammable. :( that means no blow dryer to burn them out if you use that or it is just products with Tea Tree Oil already in them??

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3 0

I have been looking on to find things out as well...i have looked everywhere to find out about these pests. From what i have read when the eggs hatch it takes them 10 - 24 days to be mature enough to lay eggs. So please tell me if you think I am right in thinking that if every week for a month I treated with listerine or whatever (without combing out the nits- because I don't have someone to do it for me and I can't do it myself) then any that have hatched would be dead so there would be no more to be able to lay eggs? what do you think? Also after washing bed linens and such.

36 0

mix a few drops of tea tree oil in your regular shampoo. use it every time you wash to prevent lice.

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1

I lived in Florida my whole childhood n let's just say down there it was like an epidemic!! Boys n girls had it n those little suckers are hard to get rid of!! Once we got rid of em a friend would have em n before u know it we had it again it was a vicious cycle!! I had long dark curly hair that my mom finally had to chop off. I really dnt have any prevention tips but I do know u get the OTC shampoo n comb box set n after you've dne the wash n killed em u still have em because its the eggs that u really need to get!! After multiple times of the same process of my mom combing n picking through my hair with the stuff they give u n thinking this time their gone... WRONG My poor mom anyway she heard use mayo yes mayo... It loosened them off the scalp n was easier to comb out... I know it sounds gross n yes to this day I hate mayo n yuk the smell but it worked!! Mom told all the other mothers n we no longer had the ichies anymore ๐Ÿ˜ƒ the trick is in order to get rid of lice get rid of the eggs!! I hope this helps cause as a child who suffered from headlice its not fun cute n it can b embarrassing... FYI: mayo is good for ur hair it conditions frizzy dry hair

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0 0

I like this product called lice shield its a shampoo you use to prevent lice u can also get the spay and a dab stick so you can combine all three it wont kill them if you already have it but you can prevent it from happing and you have to use common sense to the same rules always apply no sharing hats and combs etc......and you can buy it at walmart its called lice shield

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1 0

***MAYO***I lived in Florida when I was a kid and had it a few times,down there its like an epidemic if 1 kid in your class had it the entire class got it then you take it home and the whole family gets it...definitely use the shampoos you get at the store but I got a little trick, its a little gross but affective. Atfer the shampoo put mayo on the scalp, I know YUCK, then use a very fine tooth comb and work through the hair section by section. The thing about lice is they lay eggs the shampoo kills the lice but the eggs are still there and very difficult to get rid of and if you miss any you'll be doing this whole process in a few weeks and it'll b a never ending cycle. I know it sounds gross but it does work before my mom heard about using mayo we had faught those lil bugs a few times but after we used the mayo and got all those eggs we won the fight against lice :) Have any questions feel free to ask. Good Luck!!

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0 16

When my girls were little the only thing i found on their heads believe it or not was mayo...... would take a reg size jar of mayo and saturate their heads wrap it in siran wrap and put a nylon stocking on their head to keep it on their heads while they slept then use dawn dish detergent soap to wash it out ( since that was the best thing to cut threw grease) ,lse downeand only had to comb threw it once. It was an OLD rem. my Gramma told me ... we had tried everything before that and i SWEAR it was one of the GREATEST things i was taught . then wash everything in HOT water and garbage bag their stuffed animals and BLEACH EVERYTHING.... SO MUCH CHEAPER THAN ALL THAT OVER THE COUNTER STUFF!!!!!!

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10 13

I was pregnant with second son when first one brought it home froma party, wash,bag all pillows and stuffed animals 2 weeks, we used bags under pillow cases. Vaccum daily maybe twice including furniture drapes ect., Any where there is a hair on a head or not they will breed. Then instead of risky chemicals I found a harvard study using olive oil,...what a mess and a stink! BUT it worked the nits came right out, still very time consuming daily checks and comb throughs for a few days. Leave the oil on for 6 hours,bagged and towel wrapped,...it is a drippy mess and will stain. Then like others have said fairy tale hair products for prevent never had again!

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1 0

Use 'permitherin' to treat . daily or a day later or weekly use thin comb to prevent lice AFTER oiling hair. once you have used the a shampoo or lotion using permitherin repeat after a week. the eggs will hatch after a week. they cant be treated or removed using a comb. hope it helps.

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27 26

I worked at a kindergarten for about a year and there were a couple kids that got lice. the school nurse told me about a shampoo that prevents lice that can be bought over the counter at the pharmacy. i used it when i heard of lice outbreaks in the classes i helped in.

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0 20

hi i spray abit of hairspray on my daughters hair before school.it makes the hair shaft slippery so the lice cant hang on easily.tie her hair back everyday and she hardly ever gets them. when she does i treat with moov solution

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0 51

I just make sure hair is always tied back for school and then spray it all over with hair spray. I wash it every other day and make sure I use lots of conditioner and comb it thoroughly and we have been nit free for 7 years.

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