I have been asked by several parents recently for help with clearing and preventing vermin infestations, in particular Head Lice. It seems to be a problem that some children are prone to and many associate it with going back to school. Since kids are in close contact with other kids – it can spread like wildfire. Over the counter treatments are very toxic and using them can be a bit like playing Russian Roulette if you are not informed about the possible side effects and how vulnerable your child may be to them.
The main ingredients in these medications are synthetic pesticides like Permethrin or Malathion which is flammable! Side effects include burning, itching, stinging, redness, swelling and more worryingly numbness of the scalp. But they are also associated with breathing problems, dizziness, serious allergic reactions and in some cases seizures and even death! Given that our scalps are literally centimetres from our brains, is it really a good idea to be applying anything with these kind of toxic possibilities, especially on young developing children?
Like any more natural approach to an illness or parasite, using less harmful methods can be more time consuming but there is no price tag attached that includes damage to the brain, nervous system or skin or respiratory system.
A more natural approach to vermin infestations has to include these 3 steps:-
1. Understanding why your child is vulnerable to Head/body lice in the first place?
Head lice and other vermin does not necessarily mean that hair or the child is dirty or has poor hygiene, in fact some think that, on the contrary, Lice are more attracted to clean hair stripped of it’s natural oils and defences. They are however, attracted to kids who may be not 100% healthy, who are more likely to get lots of illnesses or who are suffering some kind of ongoing emotional upset or trauma. Just like when we tend a garden, we know that if the soil is not good quality, or is lacking in nutrients there are more likely to be all kinds of unwanted bugs and pests.
So a massive part of any treatment for any child who seems to be picking these up regularly is to look at their general health and boost it so that their natural defences work and they are not such an attractive home for pests. When my own children were of school age – we would get regular notes sent home from the school about Head lice, but my kids never got them. My regular Clients have the same experience and my nieces and nephews who are all treated Homeopathically and eat good, clean, nutritious food, again although they come into contact with Lice do not pick them up.
The beauty of Homeopathic remedies is that they are addressing all of a child’s health – physical, emotional and even spiritual. Coupled with good nutrition and minimal toxins this means a good, healthy ‘soil’ and therefore less chance of vermin!
2. Removal of the current infestation in 2 stages to kill adults and any missed eggs or hatchlings.
Removal of any current infestation can be supported by whatever Homeopathic remedy is appropriate – again changing the living conditions for the Lice and making it more inhospitable. But must be also backed up by the use of things like:-
- Essential oils such as Neem oil, Tea-tree oil, Lavender oil – you can put these into ordinary natural shampoos or buy them already included.
- Use Herbal treatments like Delacet or Apple Cider Vinegar as a rinse and massaged into the scalp.
- Wash the hair with the above shampoo then massage gently heated coconut oil or olive oil with Tea-tree or any of the above oils into the scalp. Encase all the hair and head in a plastic hair bag or ordinary bag that you can tie firmly around the head & leave preferably overnight or for at least 6 hours. This will kill the majority but then use the Nit comb to double check and repeat after 7-9 days.
- Using a Nit comb – a finely toothed comb used from the scalp through to the ends of the hair with either olive oil or coconut oil. You are physically removing the adults and as many eggs as possible, but this must be done every 2-3 days until you are satisfied there aren’t any left. Personally I would then repeat after a break of 7-9 days to ensure that you catch any missed eggs or hatchlings. Lice cannot survive more than 2 days without a host so they do not live in fabric or furniture for any length of time. They are also not able to transfer to other species – human lice need humans so dogs or cats will not do! If you are not sure that there are Lice present, use the comb to examine the scalp and hair – the adults are dark & clearly visible and the ‘nits’ or eggs are stuck on to the hair shafts and are whitish.
- Eliminate any possibility of contact contamination by not sharing any towels, brushes, combs, clothes or bed linen. All these should be regularly boil washed and you can also add essential oils to the wash or to the dryer just to be sure.
- Check all other family members as well since you don’t want to end up going around in circles!
3. Boosting your child’s general health in order to prevent further infestations.
Prevention is always better, safer, quicker and cheaper than cure!! If your child is prone to these pests – you need to look at why? Part of my approach is to properly assess their diet and eating habits, look at sleep habits & address any insufficencies on any level. Also a child’s emotional state has a massive part to play in their general health since if they are permanently worried, concerned, embarrassed, frightened, sad or angry it will be taking their energy and reducing their ability to fight off any illness or dis-ease. This is where Homeopathy excels – every prescription takes any emotional state into account and helps the child to re-balance and cope better with almost anything.
Here are a few of the more commonly used Homeopathic remedies to help Head lice, there are many more and to be honest potentially any remedy that boosts general health and ensures an immune response that’s 100% effective will help:-
Nit-ac – Homeopathic remedy Nit-ac helps kids with head-lice who have puffy swellings on the scalp & lose hair from top of head. May have sweaty, smelly feet, foul breath, mouth ulcers & bleeding gums. Teeth are decayed.Splinter like pains, easy bleeding, sore, red orifice’s. Can also have weak lungs.⠀
Carb-Ac – Homeopathic remedy Carb-Ac helps kids with head-lice who are really lacking in energy, disinclined to do anything especially school work. loss of appetite, belching, flatulence & nausea with bad breath & taste. Very keen & sensitive sense of smell. Sleepy & constipated.⠀⠀⠀
Merc-viv – Homeopathic remedy Merc-viv helps Head-lice problems in kids who sweat alot & have a tendency to ear & eye infections, colds & sinusitis. Learning problems, weak memory, restlessness, hyperactivity & hypersensitivity. Oily sweat & eruptions on the head, dribbling & excess saliva.⠀
Lycopodium – Homeopathic remedy Lycopodium helps kids who pick up Head-lice easily. These are kids who are full of anxieties particularly about anything that makes them feel humiliated or embarrassed or a that they’ve failed. There are generally problems with wind, bloating & digestion – craving for sweets & excessive hunger. Eczema & eruptions on the scalp or dandruff. Quick thinkers but weak physically, can be bossy at home.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Staphysagria – Homeopathic remedy Staphysagria helps to prevent or shift Head-lice and a tendency to insects bites or other parasites. Kids can be very sensitive to what others say about them, feel humiliated, or ashamed and easily angered. Can have dandruff & eruptions on scalp & around the ears as well as slight hair loss. Usually a general weak immune system & poor nutrition.
If you are concerned about your child and want to know more about working with me to help issues like this or anything else – lets have a chat, just email me and we’ll set it up.
Hope you aren’t all feeling itchy now!!