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head lice


Head lice are most often found in areas with high numbers of people in close contact.  The spread of head lice is especially common in schools and educational facilities and occurs when personal items such as hats, combs, and helmets are shared or when there is direct contact (head or hair) with an infested person. 

Biology and Behavior

lice crawling through hair

  • Approximately 1/16th – 1/8th of an inch in length except eggs (or nits) which are quite small and typically only 1/16th of an inch in length

  • Long, flat bodies that are grayish in color

  • Six legs equipped with hook-like claws that allow them to move along hair shafts

  • Head lice are can only live for about two days without a host

Head Lice Control Tips

  • When detected, the first course of action should be to treat the person with shampoo or lotion treatment. Consult your doctor for advice on what type of treatment.

  • Wash all clothing and bedding that the infested person has come in contact with immediately to kill head lice

Head Lice Prevention Tips

To help prevent head lice infestations:

  • Do not share hairbrushes, hats or hair ties

  • Make sure that any bedding being used has been thoroughly washed

  • Routinely check children for head lice

  • Do not send infested children to school until the lice have been treated and killed

For more information about head lice and treatments, visit


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