How Do You Get Lice?

Lice are parasitic blood-suckers that attach themselves to human hair and reproduce at a massive rate. They have been categorized as a medical condition and are highly contagious. They can live for as long as a month, feeding off the host’s blood. Blood, of course, is the main source of their diet.

Lice start out as nits (eggs) and eventually hatch into nymphs. These nymphs turn into imagos after 3 moltings then reproduce. The thing about lice is that they copulate often, hoping to create more lice and spread through the host’s scalp. Can you imagine how gross it is to have blood-sucking insects making out in your head?

A common mistake that people make is to think that head lice are attracted to dirty hair. The truth is, it thrives in clean hair, making it easier to attach themselves. Having healthy clean scalp is perfect for the lice as there is nothing to obstruct its feeding.

Among the symptoms you can expect are severe itchiness (probably as a reaction to the lice bites and the saliva they inject into the skin to prevent the blood from coagulating while feeding). Also, if you notice red blotches on your child’s scalp, as well as the flesh behind his or her ears and the nape of his or her neck. Lice love laying their eggs behind the ear area and often collect there. Lice thrive in the darker areas of the head and can be the root of severe discomfort for its victims.

Lice are highly contagious, and are often passed on from one victim to another. You can get lice through:
1. Sharing clothing and accessories with an infected person. If you use the same cap, a hat, a shirt, or hair accessories with an infected person, you, too can get head lice.
2. House items. You can also get lice by using the same blanket, clothing, pillows, and other home item upholstery.
3. Hair-to-hair contact. While lice do not have legs great enough for jumping from one host to another, it can transfer from one head to another to direct contact.

Be sure about it
You can either take your child to a specialist, or you can go through your child’s hair yourself. Use a lice comb and glean through each strand. If you notice any nits or if you see actual lice crawling around, it’s time to take your child to a physician. You should also get everybody in the house checked. Lice can be catching. Even you could have been infected simply by going about your daily routine and touching on things that may or may not be contaminated.

Get the house cleaned
To make sure that lice don’t spread in your home, you’d better get it cleaned. There are many places in the house where lice can hide like pillows, blankets, beds, the couch, clothes, hair clips or scrungies, old brushes or combs, hats, scarves, chairs (particularly, the head rests), and so on.