Although the school nurses may assist parents by screening for head lice, it is especially difficult to detect head lice in the early stages. Therefore, it is very important that parents check their child periodically throughout the year. It is with parents’ help that we can best control the spread of head lice.
Characteristics of Head Lice
Close head-to-head contact is the primary way head lice are spread. Lice do not hop or fly, they crawl. Lice are not a health hazard and are not responsible for the spread of any disease. They are not associated with poor hygiene or unclean home. The most common symptom of head lice is an itchy scalp, especially behind the ears and at the nape of the neck, although not everyone feels itchy. To check for lice, part your child’s hair and look at the scalp for nits or eggs, small white or yellow-brown specks that are firmly attached to the hair shafts. Adult lice are more difficult to spot because they are extremely small, about the size of a sesame seed, and will move quickly away when exposed to light. Contact your health care provider for treatment recommendations. Children should be reminded not to share personal items such as combs, brushes, and hats.
Please contact your health care provider and/or your school nurse if you have any questions.