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Nits and the school ...

(70 Posts)
Brillenbar Sat 19-Nov-16 11:48:09

Our primary had a very long standing problem with nits. I cleared ds and dd2 last weekend with the time and distress that causes them and have just combed about 1000 adult nits out of dd2s hair after a week at school. This is the routine every single weekend we clear them and by next weekend they are hopping again.

Does anyone have any practical suggestions I could make to the school? I don't know ( I don't want to know) whether it is particular children or all children. There is no nit nurse that comes. The school won't send kids home if they have nits. They have tried sending rubbish combs to all parents in the past but it made no difference.

Is there anything else we could try or ask the school to try? Or do we just put up with an hour or 2 of combing and sobbing every weekend until they at at secondary?

We love the school in all other respects!

Randytortoise Sat 19-Nov-16 11:51:09

Doing them just once a week won't clear them. You will just be taking out the lice and leaving the eggs to hatch . By the following week it's no wonder they are riddled again. You have to come through their hair every night for a week then everyother day for a couple more weeks to insure you have cleared them and broken the cycle.

TeaBelle Sat 19-Nov-16 11:52:14

You need to comb more frequently - 3 days after doing your initial comb as if you've left any nit eggs the lice will hatch and then still be in their hair. Also hair up every single day, sprayed with hair spray and tea tree shampoos to deter

Twinkletowedelephant Sat 19-Nov-16 11:53:54

Do you treat their hair or just comb?

If you just comb out the eggs will hatch and you will never get rid of the problem, and re infect the rest of the classes.

There are 3 classes in DTS year...1 class has a bit problem as a couple of mums won't put chemicals on their children's hair or tie it back

I have found hairspray/gel to be a good deterrent.

Monkeyface26 Sat 19-Nov-16 11:59:52

Straightening hair with ghd's or similar cook the eggs and they don't hatch. I cannot cite any scientific proof for this - in fact, I can't remember where I read it but it may have been MN.
I have found it helpful though as it was far less upsetting to my dd than the chemical guck. Also some parents were refusing to treat using chemical guck so spreading the word about straighteners may have helped.
I also bought an leave-in overnight hair mask from Boots (Charles Worthington, I think) which smelled nice and kills the lice overnight as it smothers them in the same way as some of the chemicals. We still have occasional reinfestations but get them sorted out without upset now.

catkind Sat 19-Nov-16 12:12:29

It sounds like school sending out detailed treatment instructions may help for a start. Once a week won't clear them. Even if you use chemical treatments, they may be resistant. Check the rest of the family too, when DD got them I had some too.
I don't think it will be just your DC reinfecting the class though as I think it takes more than a week for them to hatch and grow to adult size. When we were combing the next generation out for DD they were teeny.
We now have a nit defence conditioning spray and shampoo and touch wood that seems to be putting them off. We've had a few nit letters from school since and not found any on DC.
If it was 2 hours of combing etc every time and a frequent occurrence I'd be asking kids if they wanted to try a shorter cut. Sounds really unpleasant for them. How are you doing it? Do they have particularly difficult hair? You need looooads of conditioner, and comb it really smooth before you start nit combing. It is a 10 minute job for DD, less for DS who has a short cut.

insancerre Sat 19-Nov-16 12:14:25

Combing is better than chemicals but it should be done every couple of days

insancerre Sat 19-Nov-16 12:15:14

And use tea tree oil

BlueIndigoViolet Sat 19-Nov-16 12:23:07

I'm assuming you're exaggerating by saying 1000 nits? shock

Your children will be infecting others if you're only doing it once a week which adds to the vicious circle. DD has had them a few times recently but we've finally cracked it (touch wood!)
with tea tree shampoo and conditioner, a nitty gritty though wet hair every other day, hair up and hairspray

mrz Sat 19-Nov-16 12:24:58

It's like the adult head lice hatched over the week

Finola1step Sat 19-Nov-16 12:26:31

I agree that at the moment you need to be combing daily as a weekly comb is not enough to clear and keep clear. From what you have described, and I say this ever so gently, that it may be your dc who are passing on to others.

I would recommend the following: Chemical treatment (Hedrin or something similar) tonight. Comb out. Plonk the dc in from of the TV/DVD/Ipad while you do the combing as it does lessen the stress. Disinfect combs and then daily combing, using conditioner, for the next week. Then combing every 3 days for the next couple of weeks.

I use the Nitty Gritty combs which are expensive but are by far the best on the market.

Vosene do a good repellent shampoo and leave in conditioner which I use as standard on mine to help keep the buggers at bay.

I also spray the conditioner onto dc's hair before school. Good luck .

dementedpixie Sat 19-Nov-16 12:34:18

If you are using the combing method (no chemicals) then once a week is not enough. You need to comb every few days over the period of 3 weeks to catch any hatchlings. If you are using a treatment for them then I would still comb every few days as again there will be hatchlings that you need to catch before they are old enough to reproduce.

dementedpixie Sat 19-Nov-16 12:38:22

www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Head-lice/Pages/Treatment.aspx - says repeat combing on day 5, 9 and 13 and to use detection combing on day 17

roseteapot101 Sat 19-Nov-16 12:40:23

I remember tesco pharmacy had some good stuff cant remember the name though.But treat once a week,then comb every few days till their gone.Then after a few weeks once you know they have gone go back to once a week.You only comb once a week when they dont have nits as a regular inspection for nits.

L'Oreal Paris Kids Very Berry Strawberry Conditioner great for combing you get it from poundland makes it really easy to just comb check for lice.

With my daughter to help prevent nits i wet plait her hair every night before bed and spray vosene head lice repellent.That way ready for morning my mother taught me that by making sure the hair not lose tied up tight it helps prevent them grabbing hold.She also taught me putting on a disney movie a great distraction lol

So far a combination of the two is working for me for a year so far fingers crossed

ChickenSoupChef Sat 19-Nov-16 12:44:25

As others said, it needs to be done more frequently.

A spray bottle of water with a few drops of lavender essential oil works better than any repellant spray I have ever bought.

WeAllHaveWings Sat 19-Nov-16 12:45:59

Once a week is not enough, your kids are contributing to the problem.. You need to read up and get the right combing routine, perhaps get school to send details out to other parents that don't know either.

Short hair for boys and tied up hair for girls, daily Tea tree shampoo and tea tree spray in morning helps too once they are really clear (not just combed through)

NC1nightstand Sat 19-Nov-16 12:50:18

Along with all the other fab advice, Get a Nitty Gritty comb, life changing!

Brillenbar Sat 19-Nov-16 12:50:53

To be clear on what I am doing all three of my children get Hedrin on their hair over night on Friday and then wash and comb through with conditioner on Saturday. Hedrin kills eggs and adult nits. I am combing out dead adults and almost no eggs. I am not exaggerating about the level of adults I combed out of dd2 and the fact that I sent her to school on Monday squeaky clean and on Saturday I am combing out adults tells me that it is the school that she is getting them from surely?

Brillenbar Sat 19-Nov-16 12:52:46

And I am usin nitty gritty and lots of conditioner and all that jazz. My boy and dd1 have short hair dd2 is bob length

dementedpixie Sat 19-Nov-16 12:53:50

Does she have her hair tied back for school? they are spread by head to head contact so having it up in plaits or a bun or something would help minimise contact with someone else's hair.

dementedpixie Sat 19-Nov-16 12:55:52

I would still comb before 1 week as, despite what they claim the treatments aren't that effective on eggs and the lice can be ready to move to another head by day 6.

catkind Sat 19-Nov-16 14:41:39

I'd try the conditioner combing every other night and ditch the expensive hedrin if I were you. What's going wrong to cause all the angst? With that short hair I'd expect it to be a doddle. Perhaps someone can give you tips to make the combing less traumatic at least.
Even if she's only picking them up on Monday that's a whole week collecting eggs and sharing the adults with more friends. Are you sure you're getting all the eggs? I'd expect lots if she's had that number of adults hopping about half the week. The live eggs are little brown lumps, very hard to spot or get off particularly if their hair is dark. The white ones are the empty hatched egg cases.
Embarrassing to admit but the first time DD got them I thought she was being reinfected at nursery. Turned out I was missing a few eggs each time. When we extended daily/every other day combing for longer they went and stayed gone.

BratFarrarsPony Sat 19-Nov-16 14:46:37

yes but once a week is not enough, also Hedrin is not that great AFAIK at getting rid of nits, it just does the adults. Anyway I think there is now a 'superlouse' that is immune to Hedrin.

It is a while now since I was dealing with lice and nits, but as i recall you have to be totally on the case, combing with conditioner every day.

One treatment i found really worked is that when washing, give a final rinse with wine vinegar. Then blow dry. The combination of vinegar and heat apparantly unsticks the eggs from the hair shaft.

Brillenbar Sat 19-Nov-16 16:00:44

I understood that Hedrin is not a pesticide it's a silicone thing that suffocates them so it does kill the eggs and they cannot become immune to it. That's what the pharmacist told me

Astro55 Sat 19-Nov-16 16:07:10

There is one that kills eggs and nits

Tea Tree oil - put in shampoo and conditioner - it's exactly what's in the sprays and shampoos only costing you 5X as much - £3 in the chemist

Yes to straighteners

Hair up and see about coats and hats being separated from other kids -

Have you thought about down form of head scarf head band?

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