Updated on July 24, 2020
By Lynn W. - Client and Guest Writer
Getting head lice was an ordeal...one that lasted months. I honestly was about to shave my head. I tried everything and every lice treatment that I tried failed. By the time I found LiceDoctors, I was one step away from committing myself. I am a writer with two young children. Initially I figured that I could kill the lice at home on my own. Things did not work out like that. In fact, lice remediation turned into an epic journey which I wouldn’t wish on anyone. I called LiceDoctors when it was over (thanks to them!) and offered to share with you what we went through so that you do not make the mistakes that I made.
OMG! The School Nurse Just Told Me that My Kids Have Lice
We got an email from the school that our daughters attend that my younger daughter had been scratching her head excessively since mid- morning. A teacher, fearing head lice, took a quick, yet surreptitious, look at her hair. She could not help but notice that it was filled with iridescent sticky things. Having seen these before, she was fairly confident that she was looking at nits. She quietly pulled my daughter aside and asked her to go down to the nurse’s office. The nurse having had a heads up, checked her and was able to diagnose immediately that she had head lice.
Apparently, the next step was to check my other daughter for lice. My younger daughter is in kindergarten, where they are particularly vigilant about head checks to prevent transmission among the little ones, who tend to put their heads together during play and work time. Well by now you know that both of my girls were positive for head lice. The school lice policy allows children with lice, even live bugs, to remain in school until the end of the school day. This is an attempt to reduce stigma and apparently research shows that removing kids from the classroom for head lice does not contain the spread. (not sure why that would be the case).
First Stop: Drug Store to Buy Over-the-Counter Lice Shampoo
While my kids remained in school, I rushed out to the drug store to purchase some lice shampoo. What to pick, I wondered, as I perused the backs of the lice kits. I could see that some lice products contained permethrin, while others had pyrethrum. These lice medications have names like Nix, Rid, A-200, and Pronto. It was a bit unnerving to read the potential side effects of these lice remedies which included headaches, nausea, itching, irritations, well you get the idea. What was I to do? I didn’t have any other information other than what the antediluvian nurse advised me to do.
I picked out the Nix Lice Killing Kit because the name sounded ferocious. It contained a comb, which frankly did not seem to be too helpful, and a creme rinse. I followed the directions which said that if I see nits in seven days after treatment that I should do another lice treatment. Guess what I saw in the hair seven days later? So back I went and reapplied the lice removal treatment a second time. I was a bit concerned but, at this point, I was still hopeful that the second application would remove all signs of lice.
Next Idea: At-Home Natural Lice Removal Remedies
Ok, as I am sure you have deduced, the over-the-counter lice products were not successful. Next up: some natural home remedies. I decided I was not going to pour any more toxic lice chemicals onto the perfect heads of my young children. There had to be a safer way to exterminate lice and I would be the one to find it. Out came the mayonnaise. Yep I looked online and read that mayonnaise can smother the lice. It would be in an understatement to say that this was a messy disaster. Within a couple of hours I could not get the lice comb through the hair. The mayonnaise had become dry and brittle and I was stymied. I imagined that the mayo was killing lice but I could not imagine my children walking around with mayonnaise in their hair for the rest of their lives because I could not remove it. I put the kids in the bathtub and eventually was able to get the disgusting concoction out of their hair. Guess what? Three days later I was bathing my little one and a live louse actually crawled out of her hair. OK the mayonnaise had failed.
Back to the Internet I went and read about other remedies, one of which was Vaseline. Among the comments that I read was that Vaseline was impossible to get out of the hair. I crossed that off my list.
I learned that some people had tried natural oils to kill lice so I chose to try tea tree oil. I slathered their hair with tea tree oil and my older daughter started scratching like crazy. She told me that it was stinging her and she looked very unhappy. Nonetheless, I continued combing until I saw nothing else in the hair… that is until five days later, when I looked in the hair, and saw the same iridescent sticky nits that I saw on day one. Now I was feeling angry and very discouraged!
I read that there are other herbal lice remedies available such as anise oil treatment, neem oil, and lavender oil, but what would these oils do that tea tree didn’t do? . They are used to suffocate the lice, but they do not kill lice eggs. I had been combing out the lice eggs for days to no good end.
Third Stop: Call the Doctor
So much for super mom killing super lice at home. This mom threw in the towel and called the doctor, who, I found out, is not a lice doctor. He did not even want me to bring my daughters into the office. I begged and they finally let us come in. The doctor informed me that a) yes, my daughters had head lice (thank you, I KNOW THAT!) and b) he was not going to spend hours picking out the lice and nits. He gave me two choices: get a prescription lice treatment or call a professional lice treatment service.
I made the choice to try a prescription lice treatment. In retrospect that was a poor choice as I ended up putting stronger chemicals on my daughters’ heads, I spent a fortune, and the damn products didn’t work!
The prescription lice remedy that I got was called Sklice and it contains ivermectin. While I wasn’t thrilled with the potential side effects which include itchy skin, irritation of the eyes, and a burning stinging sensation on the skin, we were desperate. The cost of this lice product is about $600 for my two girls. To make matters worse, our insurance did not cover the cost of the lice medication.
Fourth Step: Scream When the Prescription Lice Treatments Fail
I actually had some peace of mind that this expensive medication worked, when, and I kid you not, two weeks later I saw a bug climb out of my other daughter’s head when she was in the bathtub! This time I acted very maturely and took the shampoo and threw it across the room and started to cry. My husband, thinking that my daughter had somehow slipped down the drain, came running into the bathroom. There I sat looking like a lunatic screaming that I could not do this anymore. His simple response: it’s time to call a professional.
Visit to a Lice Salon Equals Next Step
I see myself as a hands-on, do it yourself mom, but my husband was right; I had tried everything I could think of and I could not kill the lice at home on my own. I needed someone with expertise (who knew that you needed expertise to get bugs out of hair? It’s not rocket science!). I had driven past a lice salon so I called them up to make an appointment. Unfortunately, it was Saturday night, so I had to wait till Monday to talk to someone to make an appointment.
When Monday came, I loaded my kids into the car and marched them into the salon. The lice technician who was supposed to treat my kids wasn’t there yet so we sat in a room waiting for her. As we waited, another family came in and sat right next to us. I wasn’t too thrilled about this as I did not think that I had lice and didn’t want to risk catching it from some other kid. I decided to take one for the team and sat there quietly.
A half-hour later the technician rolled in and, after apologizing for being late, took us over to the chairs. She checked all of us and indeed only my two daughters had lice. She took out a hot air device called Air Allee and went to work blowing hot air at my kids’ hair. After she was finished, she gave us some at-home instructions. Over $500 later, we were on our way home. Believe it or not, I did not feel confident. The treatment went very fast and I did not think that the tech was particularly thorough. I was so exhausted by this point that I put aside these feelings and hoped that she had gotten rid of the lice permanently!
Sixth and Final Move: Call LiceDoctors
Ok, I won’t bore you with the details. Suffice to say that a couple of weeks after this lice clinic treatment, I noticed my daughters scratching. Then for the first time, I felt itchy. This felt like Murphy’s Law on steroids. I called the lice center and left two messages. I was so disgusted that I wanted my money back.
It was at this point that I decided to share our ordeal with a friend. She empathized with what I had gone through and said that I should’ve told her what was going on from the beginning. They had used LiceDoctors and the treatment worked right off the bat.
What did I have to lose at this point? Warily, I made the call. It was 9 o’clock at night and I expected to just leave a message. To my surprise Tracy answered the phone, listened to my tale of woe and told me that LiceDoctors would help me. I would be lying if I said that I believed her, but she was very soothing and confident so I made the appointment. I must say I was happy to hear that the lice technician would come right to our home. I figured that would cost more than a lice place, but, in fact, it sounded like the price would lower.
The next morning at 8 AM, Sara was at our house ready to defeat the lice. She brought all of the supplies she needed and was very pleasant and knowledgeable. As she worked on my daughters, combing, nitpicking, and explaining to me what she was doing, I actually allowed myself to feel a spark of hope. When she was finished cleaning the lice and nits out of my daughters’ hair, she checked me. Turns out I now had lice! We never would’ve gotten rid of this because there was no way I could treat myself!
Before she left, Sara went over a follow-up plan with me. It was very straightforward. I oiled a few times over the next three weeks. I did not need to do any more laundry or treat the furniture for lice. I followed the plan exactly how she told me to, but I don’t even know if it was necessary. I checked the hair every day and I never saw a single nit. Each morning I would hold my breath as I checked their hair in bright light. My kids showed no signs of lice and no one felt itchy. The reality was that LiceDoctors using no chemicals, just a lot of expertise, got rid of the lice! I mean it...the lice were gone! This was a difficult journey, although it finally ended with success. It has been two months and I am finally confident that this case of lice is gone permanently. It is my hope that you do not have to go through what we went through to get rid of head lice. The best lice treatment we found was one that makes house calls and ended up costing less than our other options! This is the way to go. You will thank me.
Still not sure if LiceDoctors is for you? We have been treating head lice for over two decades. We get that there are other options, and while we are so grateful to Lynn for her letter, here are some more reasons to choose LiceDoctors:
- Over 500,000 clients successfully treated
- Highly experienced lice technicians
- Absolute privacy and discretion
- Lowest prices —less than salons
- Treatment covered by HSAs and FSAs and under some insurance
- Available day or night, every day of the year
- Comes with 30 day guarantee
- Knowledgeable lice professional answers calls from 7 am EST (4 am PST) until midnight (9 pm PST).
- All-natural lice treatments; no chemicals used
- Medical doctor on staff; Dr. Stephen Beck
For a professional lice treatment in the convenience of your home, call LiceDoctors today at 800-224-2537. LiceDoctors treatments are guaranteed to be effective and are the most affordable in your area.