• Head Louse Lice,fleas & bedbugs

    Head Louse
  • Head Louse
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Elimination

Apart from lice combs, drugstores carry a host of lotions and creams containing pyrethrins for treating lice infestations. Bedding and clothing should be thoroughly washed in hot water and then ironed or should be dry cleaned because simply washing them is not enough to eliminate the problem. If you have them dry cleaned, make sure you inform the dry cleaner of your problem and transport the items in an airtight plastic bag. It is also a good idea to vacuum your carpets, floors, and upholstery.

Actions

  • See your pharmacist or doctor for body treatments.
  • Wash bedding, towels, and clothes in hot water and tumble dry at least 20 minutes
  • Vacuum every room in the house plus sofas and mattresses (empty receptacle/dispose of bag)

Prevention

  • Avoid sharing headwear or sweaters.
  • Keep long hair tied back.

Description and development

The head louse (Pediculus capitis De Geer ) belongs to the family Pediculidae in the order Anoplura. The adults are grayish-white or beige and measure 2.0 to 3.5 mm long. The eggs and larvae are whitish. The biology of the body louse (Pediculus humanus ) is very similar to that of the head louse, except that the body louse prefers laying its eggs under clothing. Head lice complete their life cycle in 16 days. The female can lay up to 100 eggs during her lifetime, at a rate of 8 to 10 a day. The eggs are laid at night and attached to the hair. Adults live for about 30 days and can survive for 10 days off the host. It is estimated that one female and her descendents could produce 112,778 offspring within 48 hours!

Habits

Human lice feed exclusively on human blood. Head lice infest mainly the head, particularly behind the ears and on the back of the neck. Sometimes, however, they can be found in the eyebrows, beard, and mustache. The larva consumes its first meal just after emerging from the egg. It then will take an average of two to six blood meals a day until it reaches the adult stage after about four weeks.

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