Researchers have recently discovered a new type of head lice, just before children set off to school again. Why should the new type of head lice be concerning? Because it turned out to resist the treatment against ordinary lice, and it has been found in 48 states.
The new type of head lice has actually been detected since March. Doctor Patricia Quinlisk (Iowa Department of Health) conducted a study on them and observed they don’t respond the same to substances designed to eliminate them. They were found in 48 states, and the assumption was they were spread in two more states (West Virginia and Alaska), but the tests were not finished at the time.
Lice are parasites and are one of the parents’ worse nightmare, as children get infected often. The parasites lay their eggs, called nits, at the root of hairs. They spread rapidly from one person to another, and they give itches. Head lice can be crawling a child’s head on his or hers nape or behind the ears.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention informs parents on nits:
“Nits are firmly attached to the hair shaft and are oval-shaped and very small (about the size of a knot in thread) and hard to see. Nits often appear yellow or white although live nits sometimes appear to be the same color as the hair of the infested person. Nits are often confused with dandruff, scabs, or hair spray droplets. Head lice nits usually take about 8–9 days to hatch … .”
Authorities advise that if one of your family members was infected, then the entire family should follow a treatment against lice, or take measures to assure themselves the parasite is out of their home.
It is common for children to have lice because the parasites crawl from one person’s head to another when there is close contact. It can happen during physical activities at school, while in the camp, at a slumber party or while playing together. Children can’t get the parasite from their pets.
There are also some rules that apply to the house: it needs vacuuming, as well as the bed sheets need to be washed in hot water, in order to make sure the parasite was killed.
Parents should not be worried: their kids may or may not get head lice, but it is like one of the childhood diseases that comes and goes.
Image courtesy of: Wikipedia