The first step in removing head lice is to thoroughly clean your home. This means hosing down sofas and beds and thoroughly vacuuming any household items. If possible, make sure to wash hair care items such as brushes, combs, and hats. You should also store any items that can’t be washed in a plastic bag for 48 hours. This will kill any lice present on these items.
There are many home remedies you can try to kill head lice. Using almond or olive oil to suffocate them is a popular home remedy. However, it’s important to remember that oils like olive oil can sting the eyes. This is because olive oil contains oleocanthal, a compound that has a peppery bite. You’ll want to make sure to supervise your children when applying olive oil to their heads, especially if they are squirmy.
Essential oils can also be used as a home remedy for head lice. Tea tree oil has antimicrobial properties, so you can mix it with coconut oil or olive oil to get an effective combination. Just make sure to leave the mixture on for at least 8 hours, as it can kill some of the lice. After this treatment, you should make sure to combing your child’s hair thoroughly to remove any remaining lice.
Another option is to use permethrin lotion, which is approved by the FDA for lice treatments. Permethrin kills live lice but not the eggs. It may even kill newly-hatched lice for a few days after applying the product. However, if you use permethrin, you should do another treatment after the first one.