While treating head lice can be bad, dealing with lice resistance is even worse. And every year, more and more cases of lice resistance to over-the-counter products are seen.
This problem leads many parents to repeatedly use the same over-the-counter products, thinking that more of the same chemical will overcome the lice resistance. Or, they try dangerous home remedies in their effort to kill the bugs. However, this may not result in defeating lice resistance.
Something to keep in mind about lice resistance
An important thing to remember about apparent lice resistance is that is may be a simple case of improper use of lice treatments. This can be from failure to follow all of the manufacturer’s instructions carefully. Another major cause of fake lice resistance is the failure to remove all the nits. Remember, nit picking is a tedious but necessary part of lice treatments.
How to treat lice and lice resistance
If you have lice, it is important to treat them as soon as possible. If treatment fails to work, and you are sure that you followed all instructions carefully, you might be dealing with a case of lice resistance. Here are some tips to overcome stubborn lice.
If you have followed the manufacturer’s instructions on an over-the counter product for killing lice, yet you continue to see lice once the treatment is done, you could be dealing with lice resistance. Do NOT repeat treatment or try another chemical lice treatment without talking to your doctor. Over-the-counter remedies contain strong pesticides which can be dangerous in large amounts.
Pet shampoos, kerosene, and lindane are all potentially dangerous and will not solve your lice or lice resistance problem.
You must remove nits and lice. Many cases of “lice resistance” are actually due to a failure to remove the nits and lice the first time. If possible, have two people check the infested person to make sure that you catch all of the lice. Lice can move quickly and tend to hide from the light.
Your environment is not to blame. Lice sprays can be harmful for children and pets and only contribute to lice resistance. Head lice need human blood to survive, and they die off quickly when away from their human host. Vacuum surface areas and wash clothing and bedding, but the majority of your attention should be on removing the lice from the infested person. If you are truly concerned about lice in the house, go on vacation for two weeks. By the time you come back, any surviving lice and nits will have died off.
Have a cup of water handy when you are doing nit removal. Before you move on to the next section of hair, rinse the comb out in the water. This will help prevent spreading the nits from one section of the head to another.
Have the right tools. A magnifying glass, tweezers, scissors, and nit comb will help make your job easier.
If after treatment, you are still seeing lice and suspect lice resistance, contact your doctor. He or she will be able to recommend alternative treatments to help you deal with your lice problem. In severe cases of lice resistance, a prescription strength product may be required.