Winter Lice Tips for Parents

Winter is a fun time of the year for kids of all ages who eagerly anticipate the holidays and time off from school, glistening white snow, and all the other kid-friendly perks that come with this season. But, parents oftentimes dread winter. Not only is getting out of bed harder when it’s cold outside, but kids also use scarves, hats, gloves and mittens and other cold-weather accessories, maximizing the risk of transmitting lice.

Avoid Clothing Piles

One way to minimize transmission of lice is to avoid using ‘clothing piles’ or boxes for kids clothing items. You’ll often find them at school, daycare, and other locations and kids love them because throwing things to the side is their specialty. Teach children to hang their items on a coat rack or hanger rather than toss it to the side.

Sleepover 101

Kids enjoy sleepovers, but they also pose a risk of lice transmission. Make sure kids bring their own sleeping bags and/or blankets to sleepovers and avoid sharing pillows. Purchase pillows especially for sleepovers to avoid risks. Wrap the pillows in trash bags when not in use.

Perform a Weekly Lice Check

It’s okay to check your child’s head for lice. In fact, a weekly check is probably a good idea, especially once they return to school after the holidays. It takes a couple of minutes to check our child’s head for lice. Finding lice/nits early on prevents many problems, including infestation in the home. Check the child’s head for lice in the bathroom or another well-lit area in the home. Take immediate action if there is a lice or nits presence.

No Sharing Allowed

We tell our kids that sharing is caring, but this is one such time when it is not. Tell your kids that sharing their personal hygiene items, including hairbrushes, the bombs, toothbrushes, hair barrettes, and other similar items with other kids. This is one of the biggest ways that lice is transmitted from one child to another. Prevent it before it happens by telling your child that sharing these items is never acceptable.

How to Treat Lice

In the event your child comes home with lice, it’s important that head lice removal take place immediately. Over-the-counter treatments usually work for most kids, but you may need to take your child to a lice treatment center in the event of stubborn lice or recurring problems. Along with using this lice treatment to remove lice from the child’s hair, remove all the lice from the home. Make sure to wash clothing and bedding and dry on high heat for at least 30-minutes to kill any remaining lice and/or nits. A lice removal service may also benefit you in the removal of lice from your child’s head.