It’s highly likely that at some stage my kids are going to come home from daycare, kinder or school with head lice. Nits affect 50 percent of Australians over their lifetime and they’re not exactly a welcome addition to the scalp of our spawn.
When they do appear it’s hard to know what to do as there is so much misinformation out there about prevention and treatment of nits. When head lice do latch onto one of my kid’s hair, I want to be armed with the right information.
Mamamia have made a helpful video on this itchy subject (see above). And I’ve done the research to bust some popular myths below:
Myth #1: Only grubby kids get head lice.
Think head lice only affects kids with greasy hair who haven’t sniffed shampoo in a month? Think again! Head lice is not a sign of poor hygiene so shouldn’t carry a stigma. Nits don’t discriminate and are happy to latch onto both clean and dirty hair. While washing your kid’s hair every night won’t deter nits, it’s a good idea to do a daily nit check. There are also some handy products available to prevent nits like the MOOV Head Lice Defence Spray, which offers eight-hour protection from head lice – a great option if there has been a recent outbreak at childcare or school.
Myth #2: Head lice have won Olympic gold in pole vaulting and high jump.
No, head lice have not taken home gold for Australia. They are wingless and can’t hop, jump or fly, preferring to be stage-five clingers. The only way nits can be transmitted from one person to another is via close personal contact or sharing items like hats, caps, brushes and combs. When it comes to items that touch your kid’s head, sharing is not caring. Label those suckers!
Myth #3: You won’t get nits after the age of 12.
Kids can be pretty gross. Mine have been known to snack on snot and projectile vomit if they mistakenly eat a vegetable. Before you add head lice to the plethora of child-related icky things you have to deal with, know this. You are not exempt. Anyone of any age can get head lice. Is it more common among school-aged children? Yes. Is it exclusively reserved for young scalps? No.
Myth #4: You can get head lice from the family pet.
Did Gary the Groodle stink out the lounge room? Probably. Did he give your kid head lice? No. Human head lice only live on human hair so you can’t get nits from the family pet or that cute little lamb at the petting zoo. Nits have a life cycle of up to 21 days, which means you need more than one treatment to get rid of them. MOOV products are clinically proven to remove lice and their eggs. Use MOOV’s shampoo or solution to zap your kid’s lice, then repeat. Do not use these methods on Gary.
Myth #5: Head lice spread diseases.
Head lice get a pretty bad rap among parents. It’s a wonder they haven’t been blamed for global warming and rising energy prices. I almost feel sorry for them…almost. While you might want to blame nits for a lot of things, you can’t accuse them of spreading diseases. Because they don’t. While head lice may cause your child’s scalp to itch and develop a rash, lice do not spread any diseases. They also did not eat your child’s homework. That was Gary.
Myth #6: You need to burn the bedding.
Before you go setting the kids' sheets on fire, hear this. Nits live on heads. not on beds. If you feel more comfortable washing all the sheets, go for your life. There’s nothing better than hopping into a freshly made bed at night. If you’re doing it purely to rid your home of head lice, it won’t actually help. Neither will chucking out the rug or shampooing the carpet. The only way to destroy nits is to hit them at the source – the scalp.
When it comes to head lice, arming yourself with the facts is your best defence. You can help prevent head lice by tying your child’s hair back, avoiding shared hats and brushes and using MOOV's Head Lice Defence Spray. They have a license to kill!
What's your most memorable (or least memorable!) experience with head lice?
This content was created with thanks to our brand partner MOOV Head Lice.
Looking for Defence against Head Lice?
MOOV Head Lice Defence Spray is a leave in conditioner, sprayed onto children’s hair daily for proven 8 hour protection against head lice.
Visit moov.com.au for more information on the head lice life cycle, the best products to use for your family, handy treatment tips and more.