When nasty critters set up camp in your child’s hair it can be a frustrating process trying to eliminate them. But fear not, we can help you with your challenge. So what steps can you take to stop them invading hair in the first place and what should you do if you receive that dreaded head lice letter from school?
Anyone with a phobia of creepy crawlies, look away now. The common head louse, otherwise known as Pediculus humanus capitis, is an obligate ectoparasite that lives on the human scalp. In other words, it’s a tiny insect – usually between 2.5 to 3mm long – that needs a host to survive and lives on the surface of that host, i.e. your child!
It’s a known fact that lice love children’s hair: school, playgroups and large groups of children are the perfect breeding grounds for these pesky pests. Once safely ensconced in the hair of your unsuspecting child, they survive by biting into the scalp and feeding off human blood. Thankfully, unlike body lice, they do not carry disease. Contrary to what you may have heard, they can’t fly or jump but can move of speeds of up to 23cm in a minute. Now that’s fast.
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