I was a lucky kid. I never got head lice. I was a hairstylist, and saw it many times. But never had I experienced anything like what we did this past summer with head lice and our family.
Yuck. Gross. Disgusting. Dirty. Dreadful. Annoying. Itchy.
This summer, the third week of July,my daughter came home from summer camp with a head full of lice. I didn’t think too much of it, being a hairstylist, I immediately went out to the pharmacy, got R&C( Canadian version), did the treatment, nit picked her hair, washed all her bedding and clothes. The instructions recommend doing another treatment 7 days later. We did another treatment 7 days later. Nit-picked her hair, washed all the bedding in the house, and all her clothing. We were good……or so I thought.
4-5 days later my daughter starts itching again. We do another treatment, nitpick her hair, wash all the bedding and clothes – I went out and bought an R&C spray for the furniture, anything that you can’t wash. Again, I thought we were clear.
So at this time we have been dealing with it for two and a half weeks- and getting nowhere.
Our family took a camping trip, I slowly realized I was getting itchy! But we were out in the bush for three days, as soon as I got back, I checked myself ( I used to be a hairstylist) and low and behold, I had them.
Head lice. For the first time. At 30 years old.
I cried. My hair is 3/4 of the way down my back. I had short hair the whole time growing up and just started to grow my hair for the past 6 years. I didn’t want to have to cut my hair. I did a treatment on myself. I nitpicked myself. I washed all my, husbands and I’s bedding, all the kids, all the clothes. This is when I started bagging EVERYTHING. It is now the end of September and we still have clothes in bags…. I coloured my hair.
One week later – I did another treatment, nitpicked my own hair – with very thick hair that is almost two feet long, this was no easy task. It took me about 4 hours each time. So had spent about 8 hours nitpicking my own hair.
All the while, trying to get on top of it with my daughter, A few days after my second treatment, I noticed lice in my oldest sons hair. By this time I was LITERALLY at my wits end. I was angry. I was frustrated, I felt defeated. There was nothing I could do to get rid of them, We had done 4 treatments on my daughter, 2 treatments on myself, I had been washing all the bedding, the pillows, the clothes…how on Earth are theses things still here?
SUPER LICE. It is a problem. More of a problem than people realize. Being a former hairstylist, if there is no effective treatment for head lice, they will just keep spreading, becoming a huge public nuisance as it passes from one person to the next. Over the counter lice treatments used to be effective at killing lice. They no longer are. I have saw it with my own eyes. I would get a live lice of my daughters head, douse it in R&C and it would still be moving! The lice treatment wasn’t working!
By this time, we had been dealing with head lice for a month. A month of washing bedding everyday, clothing – everyday. Nitpicking, everyday. I started researching head lice online. School was only 3 weeks away – we HAD to get on top of this. As I was reading, I came across a new little known product called NYDA. It wasn’t even on the first or second page of google search, it came up on the third page of info. ‘SUPER LICE, MEET YOUR MATCH’ is the headline that caught my attention. And so I started reading. Over the years, head lice have developed a mutating reaction to the insecticide treatments. They will actually mutate when the insecticide is on them, so that the insecticide doesn’t affect them. They had been doing research and found that a saline (salt) based treatment actually works better than an insecticide, without all the harmful chemicals. The salt, gets ingested, and breathed into the lice’s airways and skin. There are other ingredients, as well, that when the lice breath in this solution, it actually changes in composition and seals to the inside of the lungs, forcing suffocation. No animal can learn how to mutate to prevent suffocation. I called the pharmacy to see if they had it available. They did.
We used 1 treatment cycle( 2 wash’s, 2 nitpicks) on each family member – as they recommend treating all family members on the same day, to prevent a re-infestation. I went a bought a$20 steel nit comb kit. I washed all the bedding. I threw out 5 pillows, and bought new ones. I bought new pillowcases. I put all the cleaned bedding into garbage bags and sealed them up. One month later, I am just removing them from the bags and re-washing them before they get used again.
After one treatment cycle of NYDA, I am happy to say, our lice problem is finally over! Never again, will I use the other nasty chemical based insecticide’s on my or my children’s hair. Here’s a prayer saying hopefully we never have to deal with this again…but if we do, I know what I’m using – NYDA. Ask the pharmacist about it.
During some of my research, I came across a blog talking about BREAKING THE STIGMA attached to head lice. I’ve felt it. I’ve felt the disdain from other people when you tell them your dealing with head lice. I’ve felt the judgement. When people take a step back from you because the don’t want to ‘catch’ it. SO, I’m BREAKING THE STIGMA: Everyone gets head lice from one time to another. It’s not ‘gross’, it’s not disgusting, it does not mean you are dirty. Being a former hairstylist, lice like ‘clean’ hair – hair that is free of hair colour, gel, mouse, products.
I’m sharing my families struggle so that hopefully another family won’t go through a month and a half of hell, between laundry and buying treatments, pillows and such, we’re down $150 that could have been used to take the kids to do something fun for the last bit of summer, but we were stuck inside – nitpicking. I hope to save someone else the hassle I went through. Just get NYDA. Do not use NIX, or R&C. They are no longer effective at treating lice.
So…here’s to the prevention of the spread of head lice. I hope this helps someone!