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Wetcombing for headlice - a few questions

(60 Posts)
Tinkjon Sun 27-Jul-08 22:26:30

Not sure if DD has lice/nits or not...

1. Is it normal to find lots of eggs but no lice whatsoever? (this happened on 2 combing sessions).

2. I did one comb on me and DH and there was nothing showing - do we still have to comb ours until DD is clear, or can we leave ours now?

3. I combed DD once and found lots of things which I'm assuming are eggs (though I'm still not sure) but no lice. Then did a second comb 2 days later. I assumed that I'd have caught most of the eggs 1st-time round but a second comb today still found quite a lot - maybe 100 the first time and 50 the second. Does that sound normal?

4. How on earth do you manage to comb long hair that thoroughly? Do people feel sure they've got every single strand? Because I wasn't sure at all. I tied it all up in sections and did it methodically but I still found it so hard to tell what I'd done and what I hadn't.

misselizabethbennett Sun 27-Jul-08 22:31:19

I'm new to headlice having had my first experience this week, but I found loads of eggs (easily 100) and only 4 lice when I first combed DS's hair. MNers recommended the nitty gritty comb and I am totally converted - it brings out all the nits/eggs/lice in one go. After one comb with this, DS has been totally clear!

The eggs look like little black specks - if you found these, I can't imagine what else they'd be.

TurkeyLurkey Sun 27-Jul-08 22:33:34

Hi there, yes its normal to find a load of eggs and no crawlers. Sometimes I think they lay a load of eggs and then bog off soemwhere else..the crawlers themselves come off quite easily, they might even be in the bath water and have come out when you washed the hair.
The unhatched eggs are small and brown and cling to the hair shaft and come out on the comb (nitty gritty combs are good at removing eggs). HAtched eggs are white. Wet comb every 3 -4 days until you get nothing out.

Good luck! Long hair is a bloody nightmare. I try to just to the best job I can on my DD and repeat it until I'm as sure as I can be there's nothing there..not very scientific I'm afraid..Hedrin is supposed to be good at getting rid of them if you need to use a chemical on her.

TurkeyLurkey Sun 27-Jul-08 22:35:58

Sorry, Hedrin isn't a chemical but is a lotion that blows the nits up, think its natural ingredients.

cat64 Sun 27-Jul-08 22:37:07

Message withdrawn

Tinkjon Sun 27-Jul-08 22:37:33

The specks I found were light brown, not black. Like you said though, I can't imagine what else they'd be. I just thought it was really odd to see no lice at all.

We have the Nitty Gritty, too... but I can't have done it very well if I still found lots of eggs today

Tinkjon Sun 27-Jul-08 22:39:37

Turkey, when you say it blows the nits up, do you really mean the nits, or do you mean the lice? If there was something I could use to get rid of the nits that'd be fab, but I thought that the only way to remove nits was combing... is that wrong?

Btw, thanks everyone!

TurkeyLurkey Sun 27-Jul-08 22:40:01

Eggs are light brown. Comb again in 3 days time and you may even get some more. Its a pain in the backside.

Defo sounds like nits.

notasheep Sun 27-Jul-08 22:43:12

The Nitty Gritty Comb will get rid of all the nits and lice without any need for chemicals.
Comb EVERYDAY! until head is clear

LynetteScavo Sun 27-Jul-08 22:43:26

I read on another thread tonight the black specs are lice poo.

TurkeyLurkey Sun 27-Jul-08 22:44:25

Hedrin is a lotion you can get from Boots (about £12 a bottle) and the one that most people say does the trick). Nits have become immune to most of the others. You put it on her hair and leave it on, it inflates the nits and lice and swells them up til they explode! You then have to put it on again a week later.

I've never used it myself but my friends rave about it. I just wet comb which if you can stand doing it has always been effective. Hedrin may be an option especially if your DD has v long hair.. apparently it leaves you hair all shiny too (not on commision honest!.

Hedrin just saves the faff of wet combing which can be a right pain if your kid has long hair.

ExterminAitch Sun 27-Jul-08 22:48:13

pediatrics.about.com/od/headlice/ig/Head-Lice-Pictures/Head-Lice-Life-Cycle-Stages.htm

i found this quite useful. dd never had more than about fifteen nit eggs but i still wet-combed every couple of days for a fortnight. tell you what i found, though... cheap conditioner is shit with a nitty-gritty, fancy pants expensive stuff glides through with no tears.

ExterminAitch Sun 27-Jul-08 22:49:31

see, there's not much point in doing the treatments as i understand it, if the child is in school or nursery. you could do your two treatments in eight days and some other kid could still have them in childcare.

TurkeyLurkey Sun 27-Jul-08 22:51:57

Yes agree with Aitch get an expensive thick conditioner..I use one for dry/scorched/ruined/bleached etc hair on my DD when wet combing and it works better then cheapo Happy Shopper stuff.

Not as much screaming from the Turkey household.

TurkeyLurkey Sun 27-Jul-08 22:54:54

Yes well I didn't like to admit it before but I'm far too tight to spend £12 on a bottle of Hedrin. It can become an expensive business this nit malarky.
Anyway, imagine how much posh conditioner you can buy with £12 plus you can use it after the nits have gone for your own hair wink.

DontNeedAnything Sun 27-Jul-08 22:56:40

Hedrin does not kill the eggs. Even the manufacturers admit that.

The only thing that is effective against eggs is the Nitty Gritty.

Tink. Once I got the hang of the Nitty Gritty (cos there is a method IMO) I find that I get about 75% out with each combing session (so combing day 1 = 100 eggs, combing day 3 = 30 eggs, combing day 5 = 10 eggs....). So I am not surprised that you got about 100 first time and still 50 the next.

Don't forget that the eggs which the comb comes into contact with are destroyed - so some (many) of the 50 you pulled out today will probably be dead from yesterdays combing.

The trick is to try and comb the hair from different angles, so you catch the eggs that are on the top, bottom and sides of the hair shaft. My method is this (not sure it will make sense in words though).

Comb hair thoughroughly. Take a line of hair at the nape of the neck about 1.5-2" deep. Tie the rest up on top of the head with a clamp clip. Work from 1 ear to the other. Put the comb in close to teh scalp and lift it as you pull down the shaft so that the hair is horizontal. Hold this section as you get to teh end of the shaft. Then with the same block of hair put the comb in sideways close to the root and pull down to the end of the shaft. The repeat again putting comb downwards again.
Now move the comb along to the next block, overlapping it slightly with the first and repeart the 3 strokes.

When you have completed this layer let down another 1.2-2" of hair - and repeat.

It is dull. Just pity me when you are doing it. I have twins and it takes me about 2hrs by the time I have shampooed, conditioned combed and rinsed them both.

ExterminAitch Sun 27-Jul-08 22:56:52

you know you can get hedrin and your nitty-gritty combs free from teh pharmacy under that under-16 prescription service thing? sorry to be so vague, i can never remember what it's called. you register at your local pharmacy, it's designed to take the pressure off GPs.

Jux Sun 27-Jul-08 22:57:10

Another vote for Hedrin - it's fantastic stuff. DD is 8 now and we've had countless combing sessions over the years, it helps if you use tons and tons and tons of moisturiser.

Go for Hedrin - then you don't have to comb at all. It's wonderful. I shall sing it's praises until the end of time...grin

Tinkjon Sun 27-Jul-08 23:01:08

Comb every day?! I've only read to comb every 2-3 days over the course of a fortnight. I don't really have to do it every day, do I?!?! ARGH! We've been watching a lot of TV doing this, I tell you

Will look into this Hedrin thing - I like the sound of something stopping me from wet-combing, I think DD will kill me if I do this to her every day for another fortnight!

What about me and DH then - can we forget about doing our hair, as it was clear?

DanJARMouse Sun 27-Jul-08 23:02:11

Someone PLEASE explain nits to me.

I thought nits was a term used for the lice, and eggs were just eggs?!

DD had lice galore earlier in the year, finally managed to clear them.

However, since then, she has had little white egg type things in her hair (almost like dandruff but stuck to the hair) but NO lice whatsoever.

Anyone shed any light? She has dark shoulder length hair, if it makes a difference?

ExterminAitch Sun 27-Jul-08 23:02:36

why on earth would you take the risk? just to it in the shower you lazy mare...

ExterminAitch Sun 27-Jul-08 23:03:19

JAR, as i understand it the hatched eggs are white... so maybe your dd's lice have jumped already?

DontNeedAnything Sun 27-Jul-08 23:04:28

NO you don't have to comb ever day.

You should comb at least every 4 days.

TBH I comb on days 1, 2 and 4 by which time we are usualy clear. Then as long as there is no sign of life on day 4 and as long as there is no itching in between I comb again on day14

My rationale is thatI do it more frequently at the begining cos it is horrid to see DTDs itching. If I can get them all out early it is more pleasant for them.

TBH - given that you have seen no live lice you may be as well to wait 4 days until some will have hatched and then you will see what the crawlers actually look like.

DanJARMouse Sun 27-Jul-08 23:04:36

ah ha, so the white ones are the empty ones.

Right, will be scouring DD2 again then, and try to get these casings out of her THICK hair!

Jux Sun 27-Jul-08 23:05:41

Nits are the eggs and lice are the things that lay them. They say the empty eggs are white. Don't understand why she's not itching like crazy.

I'm sure in the 'olden' days they used a vinegar rinse to dissolve the eggs - no idea if it worked. Anyone?

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