What You Can Do About Lice
Head lice are a frequent occurrence, particularly in elementary schools. Head lice are defined as a parasitic infestation of the hair on the head and are characterized by itching of the scalp as a result of live lice in the hair or ova (nits) attached to the hair shafts. Children found with head lice may not legally be kept home during the outbreak. Head lice are not contagious, not spread through illness, nor are they life threatening or due to poor hygiene. Rather, head lice are spread through the sharing of hats, combs, brushes, etc.
Our newest protocols require that when a case is discovered in a classroom, all parents of children in that class will be informed.
What can you do?
1. We ask that you to check your child’s head, nape of the neck, and behind the ears for signs of nits (lice eggs) on a weekly basis. Do the same for siblings and anyone else in the house. See your physician to confirm any suspicions you may have about what you find.
2. Immediately report any confirmed diagnosis found at home to your school nurse.
3. You could choose to use a louse killing shampoo or crème rinse (containing pediculicide). Consult with your pharmacist or physician to choose the product right for each member of the family. Check the packages for any restrictions.
4. Remind your children NOT to share personal items such as hats, combs, brushes with one another.
5. Check our homepage (www.opschools.org) for more detailed information about head lice. Look for the link entitled “Health Information” on the right hand side of the page.