The worst four-letter word a parent can ever hear and the 5 stages of coping
OK, the dreaded letter has gone home and your greatest fears are becoming a reality - your family may have L-I-C-E. Before you burn your house down and quarantine your children, read our helpful guide on what you can expect and how to cope with the range of emotions you are likely to experience. You. Are. Welcome.
1) Denial- My kids don't have lice! There is no way. We are clean and hygienic. Our children are honor roll students who are star athletes and are already applying to colleges (even though they are only 9 and 11). I refuse to accept it. We are the perfect Hingham family and that's all there is to it.
2) Anger: What little a$$hole gave this to my kid. I demand to know! It's that little Elise isn't it. That girl is such an aggressive hugger with that long blonde hair swinging everywhere. No, I bet its Charlie. He is always sharing his hats with his friends on cold days. He was swimming in the pool just three days ago. His parents are so irresponsible!
3) Bargaining: We don't deserve this. I promise I will wash their hair every day, make sure it is braided and will use lice-away-spray forever if this will just go away! I have learned my lesson. Make the madness stop!
4) Acceptance: OK, this is happening. My kids have lice. Hell, I probably have lice. Can the dog get lice? He probably has it too. We are disgusting, bug- infested humans and we have to find a way to pick up the pieces and move on with our lives. Now what? OK, I think I remember a friend of a friend telling me that there is a place that does this. (googles: Lice hingham help. OK, Close Nit Family. "Guaranteed lice removal." Perfect. I'm all in. )
5) Swagger: OK, I dealt with this LIKE. A. BOSS. Best mom ever. My kids smell like lavender and mint, all of us got conditioning treatments and we can walk into a room knowing we are 100% lice- free. No one else in the room can say that definitively. In fact, did I just see Karen itch her head. She probably has lice. Stay. Away. From. Karen.
The Facts Of Lice (Thank you to Close Nit Family for sharing!)
- Head lice is the #1 reason children are absent from school. It is 2nd to the common cold in terms of childhood conditions.
- In 7 to 10 days they hatch and in 7 to 10 days they become an adult.
- Lice do not hop, jump or fly. They can only crawl.
- Head lice do not discriminate; anyone can be affected regardless of cleanliness.
- One adult louse lays 7-10 eggs (nits) a day. They may live up to 30 days on a host.
- The eggs (nits) will hatch about 7 days after being “super-glued” to the hair shaft.
- It takes another 7 days for the newly hatched nymph to lay eggs.
- Lice can live up to 24 hours off a human host.
- Focus 98% of your time on the head. 2% of your time on your house. The recommendation for your house is to wash your bedding, hats, jackets and dry in a hot dryer for at least 2o minutes. Vacuum rugs and minimize stuffed animals on your bed until the infestation is over. Boil a pot of water, remove from stove, and put combs and brushes in the hot water for 15 minutes. Once this is done, the focus should be on removing the lice from the head and discussing prevention.
- Store bought Lice removal shampoos that contain pesticides should not be used. They have been shown to be ineffective in removing lice and can be potentially harmful to your health. Lice are increasingly becoming resistant to these types of products.
- Lice do not live on your pets. Give them a hug!