Highly contagious parasitic insects, head lice are insects that feed on human blood. The thought of being a carrier of these parasites is almost as troubling as actually having them – almost. Having head lice is embarrassing to say the least, and can even be painful. So what should you do – aside from shaving your head? Well, below you will find some home remedies for head lice that could work for you.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says head lice, or Pediculus humanus capitis, are most often spread from close person-to-person contact. Schools, gyms, workplaces, and even our own homes are some of the most common places to pick up the bugs.
Conventional treatments involve using over-the-counter medical shampoos that are essentially bug-killers in a bottle. They are unpleasant, to put it mildly. But there are effective natural solutions as well.
Some of the best natural solutions for head lice removal is simple household white vinegar. Given the affordable and widely-available nature of white vinegar, this solution is one nearly anyone can do.
The idea is to soak your head with the vinegar repeatedly until no lice or eggs remain.
- Saturate your hair and scalp with vinegar and cover with a shower cap.
- Allow the vinegar to work for as long as you can stand it—an hour or more is ideal.
- Rinse with warm water.
- Wash with your normal shampoo.
- Repeat daily or every other day until no lice or eggs remain.
While you may smell like a pickle during the treatment, the vinegar odor will wash away with your shampoo.
Additional options include using coconut oil with camphor extract, or garlic cloves with lemon juice. You may also find onion juice to be effective.
There is no magic bullet for lice, as they lay eggs that are resistant to simple washings. Repeated treatments are necessary, though, no matter which method you choose.
To prevent future infestations:
- Do not share hats, scarves, hairbrushes, or hair accessories.
- Never use pillows or lay on beds previously occupied by lice-infested people.
- Wash all linens and clothing of infested persons in hot water and high-heat drying to ensure all lice are removed.
- Vacuum the floor, furniture, and beds where any infested person laid or sat.
Lice infestations aren’t indicative of the cleanliness of a person. But by being extra cautious, you can avoid an infestation in the first place.