Natural lice prevention remedies are an alternative to chemicals, if you want to try to keep these bugs away. If head lice are traveling through your community, you can become proactive, instead of just hoping they don’t hitch a ride into your house.
There are a number of things you can do in an effort to stop these pests. None of them involve toxic chemicals, which are not a good solution, especially when safer alternatives exist.
Natural Head Lice Prevention
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For instance, tea tree essential oil can both keep these bugs away, and can also help clear up infestations, once they develop.
If the worst happens, and lice take up residence in your child’s hair, you don’t have to rely upon chemicals to kill these little beasts. That’s because herbal and homeopathic lice killing formulas are available. With natural head lice remedies, you also don’t run the risk of breeding stronger bugs. Conventional treatments have led to the problem of resistant bugs, requiring additional treatment with stronger chemicals.
However, there’s some good news about head lice. They won’t hurt your child. They don’t spread life-threatening illnesses and their bites generally don’t cause allergic reactions.
But lice are distasteful. They solely subsist on human blood, and they spread from one person to the next through direct contact. They also carry a certain stigma, although they shouldn’t. Head lice can invade even if your home is spotless, and you live in a nice neighborhood. They don’t distinguish between socioeconomic class or cleanliness. They’re only interested in their next meal, which is human blood.
Frequent bathing or showering won’t stop an invasion. But certain natural remedies might, since insects hate the smell of certain plants, such as tea tree and peppermint.
Natural Lice Prevention Remedies
Head lice have no wings. So they can’t fly or “jump” to a new host. They survive for a short time only, if there’s no human around. A new infestation can occur if these insects burrow into a piece a clothing, such as a hat. They can spread to your child if she puts this hat on her head. That’s why it’s really important to tell your children not to share combs and brushes with friends.
These insects can also spread from one person to the next if you share the same bed. So sleepover parties may have to wait, if head lice are making the rounds.
You don’t have to worry that lice will bite your pets. It’s human blood they’re after.
Usually, the telltale sign of lice is the presence of small whitish nits in the hair. If someone has long, thick hair, these may be harder to spot. These nits are the eggs laid by adult lice. Within about a week, they will hatch, and the cycle begins again. It only takes about 7 to 10 days for a female to mature, and begin laying her own eggs.
Natural Lice Remedy
I can’t promise natural essential oils will keep these critters away. But this is one of the best ways I know of to potentially prevent an outbreak. Insects absolutely detest the smell of certain aromatics, such as peppermint. (That’s why, in our house, we use essential oils to control ants.)
Here’s a very easy essential oil recipe. This can be sprayed on your child’s hair when head lice are making the rounds. Leave the peppermint oil out of this recipe if a child is younger than age 10. This aromatic is too strong for little ones.
- 6 ounces of water
- 1 ounce of alcohol free witch hazel
- 5 drops of tea tree oil (available here)
- 5 drops of peppermint oil (available here)
- 5 drops of lavender oil (available here)
Put this mixture in a spray bottle and spray it on your child’s hair twice a day. If lice are going around school, you’ll want to do this before and after classes. Be very careful not to get any of this in or around the eyes. Plant-based aromatics are effective bug repellents. Many of the natural lice prevention and treatment shampoos contain essential oils as active ingredients.
Don’t throw away this spray after the threat of lice is gone. It could also be used as a chemical-free mosquito repellent.
How to Stop Head Lice
Since head lice can’t fly, they attack the next victim only through direct contact. This is why children are more likely than adults to pick up these bugs, since they run, jump and play with their friends. Although you can’t stop this, you can warn your child about sharing hats, combs and brushes.
Here’s another way to possibly head off an infestation. (I did this when my children were younger.) When your children come home from school, camp, church or a play date, immediately put their coats and backpacks in the dryer for about 10 minutes. High heat kills the nits.
There are various easy ways to prevent or treat head lice. Unfortunately, we rarely hear about them. This might have something to do with the fact that an entire industry has sprung up around eradicating these critters. This includes the sale of chemical products. However, of the ingredients in these preparations are dangerous, and have been linked to neurological disorders.
These statements have not been approved by the FDA. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. People with health concerns should discuss them with a doctor. Women who are pregnant or nursing should not use essential oils, unless under the direction of a health care professional.
I’m not a healthcare professional, so all of the above statements are my personal opinion, and are not intended as medical advice.