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(You know - as long as they're not asleep or something.)
Helpful Information for Teachers
Finding head lice on a student can put a damper on teaching and learning. Here is a step by step guide on what to do should you find lice:
When Lice is Discovered:
You do not need to bug out!
We realize head lice is the last thing you want to be dealing with in your classroom, but rest assured you do not have to disrupt the entire class or worry that you may now have lice too.
Inform all parents/caregivers
Many times teachers are the first to find head lice on a student. Depending on your schools head lice policy you may have to send the child home for the rest of the day. Do so discreetly as to not embarrass the student. Send all students home with a letter to inform parents/caregivers to check they're children's heads.
Hand the parents an informational card.
For many families this may be the first time they deal with having lice and have no idea what to do next. You can send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will gladly send you information cards for your parents at no charge. This will go over everything they need to not bug out. You can also let them know that professional services may be in their area and in many cases can book an appointment that same day. You can also get a printable version below.
What to do around your class:
You do not have to go crazy deep cleaning your class room
You'll be happy to hear that head lice do not live in the environment
and classrooms themselves pose no risk for transferring head lice.
For peace of mind we recommend:
Wipe down chairs
Vacuuming carpets and rugs
That's it. Relax! 🙂
If you are worried when one you find out that one of the children in your classroom has lice, simply tie your hair back, spray with mint spray before school and keep a lint roller handy. For those affectionate kids who love to hug, simply lint rolling your shirt after is all you have to do. You do not have to bag anything in your room, nor do you have to replace anything including carpets. Fumigating the classroom or building is also unnecessary. These are myths and do not help in ridding any child in your class of head lice. It's most important to make sure the family of the child with head lice are checking and treating those that have it.
Here are a couple of forms that may help if head lice is in your class.
Quick Lice Facts to Share:
Lice cannot hop, jump or fly and in most cases only transfer from direct head to head contact.
Animal lice and head lice are different. We cannot give lice to our pets and they cannot give it to us.
Lice die off the head within 24 hours.
Not everyone itches, but for those who do, itching can last up to two weeks
Eggs are not contagious
All eggs must be removed
Mayonnaise, Olive Oil, Vaseline/Petroleum Jelly
These products are used in hopes of suffocating head lice. Head lice are able to shut down their bodies for long periods of time even fully submerged in substances meant to kill them. These products may suffocate the bugs if used for hours on end, they do not kill the eggs.
Cetaphil also known as the Nuvo method
This dry on suffocation method was created by a dermatologist who has unfortunately admitted that this method was nothing more than a get rich scheme. Originally known dubbed as the Nuvo method and charged $284 for the lotion, it was actual the Cetaphil face cleanser. Click here for articles explaining this.
Apple vinegar, white vinegar, Coca Cola
It is assumed that these products help dissolve the glue that holds the eggs to the hair shalft. This glue make up is similar to human hair. Substances found to dissolve the glue also dissolve the hair.
Spraying the house down and bagging everything for weeks
False! Lice sprays are money wasting gimmicks as head lice do not live in the environment. Because head lice is mistakenly grouped in with body lice in their stigma of hygiene and often times research: many believe that because body lice lay eggs in clothing and survive for days away from a human host that bagging items will help kill head lice and their eggs. A louse found off the head is usually injured or dying.
You know when you contact head lice right away
False! Head lice symptoms can take 24 hours to 4 weeks to show up. Some people are asymptomatic meaning they never develop symptoms. Most case of head lice are not discovered until 3-5 weeks later.
Eggs more than a quarter inch off the scalp are dead
False! This situation should take in climate and humidty. Because there is no way to know when an egg was laid exactly without looking under a microscope you do not know when eggs will or will not hatch. To remove to risk of eggs hatching starting the life cycle over again all eggs must be removed.