19 answers

HEAD LICE - It Won't Go Away!!

My 7 year old brought lice home from school a month ago. I have treated her hair 5 times with the store bought RID kit. I have washed everything in my house many times. I will think I got it all and then I will see her scratching again and sure enough its back. My oldest daughter also got it because they sleep together and I treated her hair ONCE and it was gone. Her doctor told me not to do the RID kit again so soon because its dangerous. So has anyone have advice on how to get rid of lice.

What can I do next?

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Oh the dreaded head lice. I did not read all posts,but mayonaise finally did it for us. You will probably have to do it a couple of times due to the life cycle of the eggs/nits and I agree with the blow drying.

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You need to get rid of it in everything...pillows, toys, rugs, curtains, your car seats, clothes, etc...

This may sound weird, but it works. My daughter also got head lice at school and it seemed like they would never go away. My father-in-law went on the CDC website and then talked to the pharmacist. They both said the same thing. Get Listerine (the good old-fashioned yellow kind, not the mint) and soak their hair in it. Wrap the hair with saran-wrap and let it sit for 2 hours. After that, wash the hair with shampoo ONLY. Once you have washed the hair, use NIX (follow the directions on the box). Also, the pharmacist said to get a metal comb and use it, not the plastic ones that come in the box. We did this treatment once and we haven't seen anymore signs of them. Hope this helps.

Hello S.

how about using essential oils?
check out this website
Head Lice Treatments By: Shiloah Baker

~~~Herbal Lice Treatment ~~~
12 drops Eucalyptus essential oil
25 drops Rosemary essential oil
13 drops Geranium essential oil
25 drops Lavender essential oil
5 drops Tea tree oil essential oil
5 drops Cypress essential oil
5 drops Citrus essential oil
3 oz. vegetable oil

Shake ingredients in a shaker i.e.: cruet. Let sit on hair for 2-3 hours. Wrap hair in saran wrap or put a plastic shower cap over the hair. This should do 2 treatments. This is a very effective method of getting rid of these bugs (At least it worked well for my family). Put this treatment on dry hair for best results and then cover with a shower cap.

The most important thing to do to get rid of the lice is to make sure that you get ALL of the nits out. They are the eggs and will hatch. This is the one thing that is not killed by any treatments, even the store treatments. You must pull them out by hand. When my children had lice, I spent hours and hours pulling the nits and the bugs out by hand. We used the beer and the essential oil treatments. If you have any suggestions to add, please email.

-Shiloah Baker

Personally I use NEEM shampoo and conditioner -- it has rosemary oil

My neices have really think long black hair and my sister used to get frustrated about lice too. She tried the mayo-all-over-the-head thing and it worked for her. Just cover ever inch of the hair and really massage it into the scalp. I've heard it suffocates the lice and they die. Also, take all their toys, shoes, pillows, blankets and wash with really hot bleach water. Spray thier beds with bleach water and let it air dry.
When I was in Mexico when I was 12 yrs old, I got lice and my mom's cousin combed my hair with gasoline. That also kills the lice, but only do this outside, if you're willing to try anything.

Walgreens sells an electric comb that zaps and kills the lice without chemicals. It really works! Of course, it is $30, but if you don't have to buy the chemicals anymore, it is worth it.

I also read on the Center for Disease control web site that olive oil works. You are supposed to put it on and then wear a shower cap for a period of time (I can't remember how long now - sorry!).

Good luck!


You are not going to like this because it is a daughter and not a son, but sometimes the best way to rid lice is to shave the kid's head. Dramatic? Yes...but the doc is right...RID is a chemical and you really don't want to use it multiple times. The hair will grow back...but lice can also damage the follicles if left untreated or she has them for a long time, so I know it is not a great idea, especially for a 7 year old. Better if it were summer time and not at school....but if the other home remedies don't work, that may be a last option...but do make sure that you are really cleaning everything else she contacts too!

HI S., my son got head lice really bad for a couple of months cause he had really thick curly hair. So we went to the doctor and she told us to use the other type of Head lice treatment. I can't remember what its called but that RID doesn't work. The other one is like 12 bucks for it. But it is totally worth it. We used it once combed his hair and we were done!!! Hope that helps. Next time I am at Target I will look at that name of that other product!! :-)

Oh the dreaded head lice. I did not read all posts,but mayonaise finally did it for us. You will probably have to do it a couple of times due to the life cycle of the eggs/nits and I agree with the blow drying.

I know this is probably late in the game, but WalMart has a "kit" that you can buy. It has the shampoo and the spray so that you can spray your mattresses, pillows, etc.

Take all the stuffed animals out of her room and either put them in a plastic trash bag or put them in a very hot dryer for 20 minutes. Spray her bed...or take it outside and leave it in the sun (yeah...what sun in the winter) for the day. If you have pets, you have to get them dipped or spray them too.

When all else fails, "bomb" you house (yanno those sprays that you sit off and come back 3 hours later).

My daughter had it 4 times in one school year. It is exhausting, but if you don't treat every single part of your home (and your pets) you won't get rid of them.

I have been told...and this may be an old wives tale...that head and shoulders works for washing their hair more frequently...it's the zinc in it that kills them...also...if you use a good conditioner on their hair, they are less likely to "attach" to the hail follicle...

PLEASE PLEASE do not allow someone to tell you to "shave her head". The little girl that kept giving it to my daughter came to school one day wearing a bandana...her mom shaved her head so that she wouldn't get it anymore...NO BUENO

A large jar of Heilman's Mayo (the fattening kind). Rub it all over the hair & leave it on for about 30 minutes & rinse it out. You probably need to do it two times or leave it on for an hour (if child doesn't mind). This was told by a health aid that came to teach our CPR class for preschool.

Also, do not wash a child's hair every day. Normally lice attacks children who are super clean!

Don't forget to wash sheets!!

Make sure you put all their bedding, stuffed animals, anything they sleep with in a trash bag. Then I recommend this comb http://www.headlice.org/licemeister/index.htm

It's time consuming to comb through their hair with this, but well worth it, because you can see the eggs & lice coming off on the comb. I highly recommend it.

If you have cleaned everything in the house even the carpets. You need to check everyone in the house including yourself and clean everyones sheets pillows. go to the school and find out who she sits next to your child or who is getting lice on a continual bases in class. It is probably someone she is close to. If you have cleaned and fumigated all your furnature. Check brushes, hair ties, hats, headbands. My daughter had it in 2nd grade and I did all of the cleaning and about a month later she came down with it again. I went to her teacher and low and behold there was a child that was in the class infecting everyone. When I got outraged at the school for not doing anything about this child who had it numerous times they finally did something about it and my daughter never had it again.

Hi S. - when my kids' Elementary school became concerned about the regular use of lice treatments on children, the school nurse recomended a treatment with creamy conditioner and white vinegar. The same year, I watched an old movie, where the kids' nanny used the same method. My friends and I tried it on our kids and it worked great. It's completely save to use. Let me know, if you want the instructions. E.

One morning my 9 year old son got out of the shower complaining with his head itching and I told him he probably wasn't shampooing his hair good nor rinsing it well. I looked at his head and saw LOTS of black specks so at first I thought that he had left dirt in his blonde hair. I then saw a bug crawl on his scalp and I went nuts! I am a hairstylist (12 years) and not once have I had to deal with lice. I also checked my 3rd child who had long curly hair, she also had it. The other 2 were okay. I did do the RID shampoo for 2 days and sprayed the carpet and mattresses! I also used crisco oil on their hair and wrapped it with plastic wrap. Sometimes the bugs will bury in the scalp. If this is the case you either suffocate them or you can use a cheap perm and comb it through the hair and scalp. It wont be that harmful on the hair if you only leave it a few minutes. Do not forget to also use the neutrilizer. You have to wash everything in really hot water because the bugs and eggs can survive in submersed water up to 5 minutes. Hope this helps.

I've heard the electric lice combs work great.


Also make sure you are taking care of the home so she doesn't get reinfested. Wash EVERYTHING in hot water after she uses it once until the infestation is gone. Take all stuffed animals, pillows, non-washable bedding, etc out of her room and put it in the garage in garbage bags. After a couple weeks you can put them all back. Check with her teacher; make sure she's not sharing hats/brushes/combs/clips with other girls at school.

Good Luck, and let us know if the electronic comb works!

my nieces used to get lice all the time when they were little. This is what we found would work when nothing else would: get some Seabreeze facial astringent & completly soak the hair & scalp, wrap it in a towel or a shower cap & sleep with it in your hair. The next morning wash hair like normal & they will be gone. I have no clue how or why it works but it worked great for them. Hope you get rid of it soon...it's a huge hassle!!

I just looked in my book and I have some things that will most likely work. The products are safe and can be used over and over again, as long as you need to.

Contact me and we can talk!


Dear S.,
I asked our school nurse when my daughter was in the fourth grade why they didn't send home all the kids who had lice. She responded that they wouldn't have anyone in shcool anymore. I feel your pain. I don't know if you have found a remedy yet, but we have some things that we do.
1. I have a cat flea comb that I got from Wal Mart. I take time to comb through the kids hair on a regular basis as a habit while we are watching tv, or anything that means we are sitting down and stuff like that. Our pediatrician said that the more the hair is combed, the more you upset the cycles of the lice itself. I don't use the regular lice combs because they can cut my childrens' head and I will not do that to them.
2. I use vinegar once a week. The acid from it is killer to those bugs and not killer to my child. Be careful of their eyes and watch out for where they might have a sore or something. It burns. But it is safer than lice shampoo. If you have to use it a lot, it is not going to hurt anyone. I also use mayonaise, the cheapo kind on another day. I soak their heads in it and let it sit for a while and then we talk or read or something while they let it sit and drown those little buggers. I use olive oil during the week, in the morning before school and braid my daughters' hair up so it won't look too greasy. You have to be consistent about it. I know these sound like crazy solutions, but faced with chemicals or this, I choose this. Lice is like an epidemic in our town. Its everywhere. They even wrote a piece in the paper about how all of the shampoos we were using so much was contaminating the water. So, I am an old hand at this. Another thing that helps and really is good is tea tree oil. I love that stuff! But you have to find someone or a place that sells it.
3. Be consistent and vigilant and don't give up! And don't blame yourself. You get them out and then they go to school and its everywhere there too. So, it isn't your fault. Don't beat yourself up over it.

Good luck, S. and take care, okay?

Our pre-school had a major outbreak several months ago. I work at the school and didn't want to come down with it again (yes, I had it too). My boys and I have been using a conditioner from Whole Foods with Neem Tree oil in it. Neem Tree oil supposedly attacks the nervous system of the headlice and kills them before they can reproduce. This is a natural product and poses no danger so you can use it every day until they're gone. I still check my kids' hair weekly just to be safe.

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