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Head Lice Education is Needed to Reduce Growing Incidence

Head Lice Education is Needed to Reduce Growing Incidence
Updated on 
April 10, 2017

The incidence of head lice is growing and education is needed to help people to be aware of what lice and nits (lice eggs) look like and how to combat the problem.

If you have ever tried and failed to combat head lice on your own, you know how frustrating the experience is. It takes perseverance, and a lot of it, to put an end to a case of lice. Perseverance, while key, is only part of the solution; without a systematic treatment plan, you are not going to get rid of the nits (eggs) in the hair. Palm Beach Head Lice Education

LiceDoctors is calling upon schools in Palm Beach County and all over the nation to provide parents with access to an array of educational materials about head lice. There are many sources of information online of which parents should be aware. There is also a lot of mis-information out there so parents need to be directed to accurate information. For many people, a diagnosis of head lice is extremely upsetting and overwhelming. Parents may panic and run out to the drug store to buy chemical lice shampoos that often do not work. 

LiceDoctors has Begun a Major Lice Education Outreach Program. 

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We recently launched a Lice Education Center page on our website with information on many lice-related topics. In addition, we have an ongoing series of webinars for school nurses and parents. LiceDoctors is reaching out to schools to encourage them to provide information to parents and teachers from a variety of additional valuable web sites including the American Association of Pediatrics, National Association of School Nurses, Centers for Disease Control, and the National Pediculosis Association, an advocacy group based in Newton, Massachusetts. 

The National Association of School Nurses has launched an educational initiative called Lice Lessons.

Lice Lessons is an educational initiative focused on dispelling common head lice misperceptions, providing information about the value of engaging healthcare professionals and building awareness of new treatment options.  The portfolio of tools and resources below are designed to help school nurses, often on the frontlines in the battle against head lice, reduce fear and stigma and help parents navigate treatment choices.

Some school districts have begun a lice educational initiative, but there are still many who send kids home with no information other than that they have lice and are not welcome in school until there are no nits in the hair. Still others recommend chemical lice treatments that are often ineffective.

Without Accurate Information, a Lice Diagnosis can be Scary

How is a parent to react to this information? It can be very scary, as well as lonely, as, unfortunately, some parents still feel stigmatized by lice and they don't want to reach out for help. This often leads to a frustrated family as the lice keep returning. We are in the field so we know that parents waste a lot of time and money trying to get rid of this problem because they have not been advised of effective treatment options. 

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A comprehensive lice educational protocol initiated by every school district would be enormously helpful for families. With many schools loosening their school lice policy criteria and allowing students into school with nits, after treatment, and in some cases, children with live lice may remain in school until the end of the school day, education has never been more needed. In an effort to reduce school absenteeism and stigmatizing from head lice, the American Academy of Pediatrics, as well as the National Schools Nursing Association, and the Centers for Disease Control now all recommend that schools drop "no nit" policies. At present time, Palm Beach County retains its "no nit" policy, despite some discussions about changing that. 

All schools should send home a packet of information to parents that addresses the following lice topics: how lice are transmitted (over 90% are from head to head contact), how to identify lice (they scoot from the light and can be hard to see, but have 6 legs and no wings); how to identify nits (translucent covering a brown bug and stuck to hair shaft); how to eliminate lice from the head ( must physically remove every nit and must be able to identify even the smallest nit to get every one out); how to kill lice in the home (not necessary to do so as lice die when off the human head for 24 hours). 

In addition to its webinar series, LiceDoctors has contacted thousands of school nurses and principals to advocate for a comprehensive education policy for parents. Head lice are the second leading cause of school absenteeism, after the common cold. Lice have developed a resistance to chemical pediculicides (chemical lice treatments), so the old model no longer works. It is not enough for schools to tell parents that their children have lice, and that they should go out and buy a chemical lice shampoo, that likely won't get rid of the lice and may have harmful long term effects. To put an end to a case of lice is more complicated than that, and as with most everything else, education is power. Schools are in an excellent position to disseminate information to parents and LiceDoctors intends to keep lobbying to make sure this happens.

If you are in the Palm Beach and West Palm Beach area and you learn that your child has head lice, don’t panic, get informed. Lice are not dangerous, they are a nuisance. With the proper treatment, lice can be eradicated. LiceDoctors has successfully eliminated head lice in over 500,000 clients and technicians have the know-how to eradicate lice from your family, as well. Phone LiceDoctors at 561-232-3490 anytime from 7 am until midnight every day of the week. We are standing by to help you and answer any questions that you have. We will send a lice specialist to your house, day or night, and she will get rid of your head lice. That promise comes with a 30 day guarantee!

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