Pre-Schoolers and Head Lice | Prevention Tips

Preschools and Head Lice

The most recent statistics suggest that between six and 12 million children have head lice infestation each year. These numbers have been put forth for several years and it is possible, even likely, that the number far exceeds that estimate. With lice becoming increasingly resistant to chemicals, and schools dropping their “no nit” lice policies, more children are attending school with head lice and potentially are transmitting it to other children. One of the most likely subgroups to get head lice is preschoolers. Children in preschool often engage in active play. Whether they are sitting next to each other drawing pictures, in a corner working on a project, or simply hugging each other, preschool age children have more physical contact than older children. The head to head contact is precisely the way lice are usually transmitted among children. In fact, when moms or older children present with lice, the culprit is often little sister or brother.

Avoiding Head Lice In Pre-School

Close Contact Preschoolers get Lice

How do you avoid this problem? After all, small children are not likely to remember not to put their heads next to another person nor would we want to repress our children that way. Keeping the classroom clean is not the answer as lice do not survive off of the head for more than one day. Children should go to school with their hair in a bun or braid so that the lice have a harder time accessing and climbing up the hair to the head. Spray or put mousse or gel in your child's hair giving it a protective coating to help repel lice. Check your child under a bright light on a regular basis to see if he or she has lice. You are looking for little bugs that move quickly and for translucent eggs that are glued to the hair. If you find signs of lice it is best to tell the teacher so that other children can be checked and treated before their infestation gets works and also so that they do not give lice back to your child once your child is lice free. The fact is there is no way to ensure that your child will not get head lice. Today lice are so prevalent, especially among young children, that it is virtually impossible to guarantee that your child will remain lice free in a school setting.

6 in 50 Students Had Head Lice In Dallas Preschool

LiceDoctors recently did a head check on a group of three and four-year-olds in a Dallas, Texas preschool. Among the 50 children we checked, six had head lice. There were five girls and one boy and their mothers were surprised and confused. "How did my child get lice when we are so careful?" they all asked. It is important to note that lice like clean hair and if your child is out in the world he or she is at risk of head lice no matter how careful you are. Ms. Jessica, one the teachers at the Dallas preschool, said she has been teaching for 10 years and it seems that each year the problem gets a little bit worse. The school has recently implemented routine screenings three times a year to try to stay on top of the problem. Unfortunately, lice have become an everyday part of life, especially among preschool aged children. LiceDoctors is available 7 days a week, day or night, to help your family deal with lice infestations.