Updated on July 19, 2020
While we don’t recommend sharing hair brushes, chances are that if you get lice it will be from direct head to head contact, not from a hair brush. Lice do not want to leave the warmth of a human head.
It turns out that Olivia in Cupertino had decided to play hair stylist with her 6 year old friends. She recently told her mom, who called us in a panic, that when her friends come over for play dates, she loves to style their hair. Of course she uses her own hairbrush. Mom was not happy to hear that especially since head lice have been going around the first grade. Olivia’s mom asked us how likely it is that her daughter had picked up head lice from another child via her hairbrush.
While we at LiceDoctors do not recommend sharing hairbrushes, it is actually more likely that Olivia would contract head lice from playing with her friend rather than from the hairbrush. The reality is that the bugs usually do not end up on a hairbrush. They scoot around the hair and when they sense another human head nearby they will crawl from one head to another. Head lice feed from the head and they need the blood in order to survive. They do not like to land on a hairbrush because without blood they will die within a day. Nonetheless, it is understandable that Isabella's mom would be concerned and upset to learn that her daughter is using her hairbrush on other girls' hair.
It is not wise to share hairbrushes, caps or helmets because it is possible to transmit head lice through those vectors. Keep in mind though that about 95% of cases of lice are passed from one human head directly to another one so being with other people makes one at risk of getting head lice; lice are just a fact of life today. If you find lice in your family, there is a simple answer to your problem: call LiceDoctors and an expert lice professional will be at your residence at a time that works best for your schedule. Call LiceDoctors, day or night, at 408-599-3198 . LiceDoctors makes your life a lot easier!