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Natural Head Lice Prevention
Back to school is almost here, and for many of us with small children that means lice season is upon us! While lice can be a major nuisance and give us the “creepy crawlies” it is important to remember that lice do not pose a significant health risk and they are very common. The presence of lice can be found on all types of hair, clean or dirty, long ,short, dark or light. They indicate nothing more than a proximity to someone else with lice.
Prevention is always the easier route and may prevent a major headache down the road. The first step is to communicate with your children. Let them know how lice can be spread and tell them not to share hats, pillows, hair brushes or put their heads against the heads of other kids. Keeping long hair tied back or up can also help. Adult lice can live 12-24 hours on any surface, after which they die. They only reproduce on warm bodies with hair (animals & of course humans!)
Essential oils have proven to be very effective in preventing lice. Caution should always be used when working with pure essential oils as they are very potent and cause harm, especially to children. Prior to using, essential oils should be mixed with a carrier oil (olive, grapeseed or avocado work great) in a ratio of 2 teaspoons carrier for 5-10 drops essential oil. The following is an excellent lice prevention essential oil blend.
4 teaspoons carrier oil (Grapeseed is my favourite)
5 drops Lavender oil
5 drops Rosemary oil
5 drops Eucalyptus oil
5 drops Tea Tree oil
Add 1 teaspoon of the above mixture to 500ml of water in a spray bottle. Spray hair daily for great detangling and lice prevention. Plus it smells great! Can also be used to spray down backpacks, hoods and hats. Mixture can also be added to shampoo however; since shampoo is rinsed from the hair only a portion of the scent will remain in the hair.
As an added precaution, weekly lice checks – visual examinations of the hair for live lice or eggs – can result in early detection and therefore make removal easier. For dealing with the presence of lice – stay tuned for another post!
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