Two Words All Parents Hate to Hear
…Head lice! A new school year can be challenging enough. But things can get even harder if you find out your child has head lice. The typical head lice treatment usually consists of applying a toxic pesticide to your child’s head, which may or may not work. Head lice have become resistant to these treatments, creating a new breed called super lice. These critters are even more resistant to the typical toxic treatment.
If you are thinking about using these harsh chemicals, my advice to you is don’t do it! I have read horror stories of these pesticides causing convulsions, brain damage and other permanent harm to children. There is effective non-toxic treatment available!
Essential Oils (and Grandma) to the Rescue!
I’d like to share my head lice story with you. My granddaughter has the thickest, curliest hair you have ever seen. One day she came home from school with head lice. Everyone wanted to rush to the drugstore and buy the typical toxic head lice treatment. I love essential oils, and I was very much against this. I did some research and came up with a recipe for a head lice treatment I was sure would work. My family had their thoughts, but let me give it a try.
I was a Grandma on a mission! I mixed up a combination of essential oils: tea tree, eucalyptus, and rosemary. I added a teaspoon of each essential oil into an aloe vera based shampoo. After putting this mixture in my granddaughter’s hair, I wrapped her head in a towel and let it sit. I repeated this process a second time. Finally, I washed her hair with the aloe based shampoo. To my delight, and to my family’s utter astonishment, the treatment worked! The lice were gone!
Since then, I continued my research on non-toxic head lice treatments. There are many options available, but I like the recipe by Kelly Pomeroy M.H. (Master Herbalist). Besides essential oils, she used apple cider vinegar and coconut oil for her family’s head lice treatment. Apple cider vinegar balances the pH of the hair and coconut oil is believed to smother the lice. See Kelly’s recipe below.
(Debby’s tips: Be mindful of allergies or sensitivities to any of the ingredients. Use a shower cap after applying oil. Use a large spray bottle for the rinse. Use a nit comb as well.)
Lice Hair Rinse (Recipe by Kelly Pomeroy)
3/4 C Apple Cider Vinegar (with the “mother” in it) I use Braggs Apple Cider Vinegar
1tsp. Tea Tree
3 1/2 C distilled water
Mix, and it’s ready. I used about 1/3 of the solution on each head of hair for the initial dose. Do not rinse the solution out. Let it dry. I later applied coconut oil to the hair. After using the hair rinse, letting it dry and applying the coconut oil (and in my case braiding) I would spray the hair wet with a spray bottle a few times a day to moisten the scalp. Spray bedding, wash in HOT water and spray furniture down to deter lice. Note: this is to be used externally, not internally. We did this rinse twice, a few days apart, and for a total of about a week of spraying and monitoring. Be sure to close your eyes when spraying the solution to not bother the eyes.