The first thing you should do if you suspect your child or another member of your household has head lice is to wash his/her hair thoroughly and dry it. Then, use a comb to remove the nits. Head lice are very contagious and can spread to other people through contact with hair and objects. If you suspect your child has the infection, you should also check your other household members. If your child is infected, it is important to get medical care for head lice.
Treatment for head lice can include over-the-counter medicine, prescription medications, and combing with a special comb. However, some lice are resistant to the treatments, so it is best to talk to your doctor for the best course of treatment. Oftentimes, you will have to use more than one product, and you may need to repeat the treatment at a later date.
Another treatment for head lice is the use of permethrin cream, which is available over-the-counter and in prescription strength. Permethrin kills lice by affecting the nerves in the skin and paralyzing them. However, it does not kill the eggs. The treatment is a temporary fix and your child may continue to be itchy for several weeks.
There are many over-the-counter products containing pyrethrins. Some of these are safe for babies and pregnant women, and some products contain higher concentrations of the insecticide. But if your child is already infected with scabies, it is best to wait a few days before applying another product.