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Head Lice Life Cycle

lice tips head lice life cycle nit nymph louse egg baby adult

Updated on August 19, 2020

Updated By Tierna Moser

Life Stages of Lice

The best weapon in the arsenal against head lice is knowledge. The reason why most head lice treatments today do not work is because they do not address the lice life cycle. If you’ve been struggling with lice, this information will help you win the battle against lice.


lice tips life cycle nit egg

Nits are the eggs that lice lay. The lice egg stages are simple. A nit life cycle, or life cycle of lice egg, lasts 6-7 days until it hatches. Eggs are laid by female lice on the strands of hair and are glued within ¼ inch of the scalp. Most lice treatments fail to work because they do not address the removal of nits. Nothing penetrates the shell of nits to kill the louse inside. Once hatched they will start an infestation all over again.


lice tips nymph baby bug louse

The second phase of the life cycle of a louse is when the bug hatches and is referred to as a nymph. During this stage, which lasts approximately 10 days the louse will go through 3 different molting stages on day 8, 11 and 16. In the nymph stage, lice are unable to reproduce.


lice tips bug adult louse bug male female

The mature adult louse emerges after the third molting stage on about day 16. At this stage in their life, male and female bugs will reproduce. The female bug, after mating will lay her first egg within 1 or 2 days and can lay anywhere from 6-10 eggs a day. This is the last of the lice stages of life.

Life Span of Head Lice

From the time they are laid until the time they die, lice live between 30-35 days. One female louse can lay 180-300 eggs in her lifetime. The life cycle of lice continues until all of the bugs and nits are removed from the hair. Lice cases do not go away by themselves. LiceDoctors offers a safe, all-natural treatment that will leave you lice-free. LiceDoctors technicians can eradicate head lice at any and all stages of infestation! Call us for same day service at  800-224-2537.

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