Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Shut down.

They shut my littlest one's preschool. Just until after Thanksgiving. And honestly, I'm a little relieved. I kept sending him this last week, though each time, I was a little nervous.

You see, the place was nearly infested with head lice.

None of the kiddos in his class had it. But all the kiddos around him had it. Every day when I picked him up, I checked his little head for creatures that had taken root. Today, I even took him to the elementary school nurse before I brought him home, knowing that I NEEDED to know before I scratched my head raw with nerves and the psychological head lice. ANd before the critters found a home in my home.

They've been fighting the good fight for over two weeks at the school. They've cleaned. And cleaned. And cleaned. And taken all the toys away -- okay, not all of them -- they've stopped naptime. They weren't letting kids back in who'd had it until they'd been checked. They hired nurses. I mean, they worked HARD to get rid of them. But they couldn't.

But not only is this a preschool, it's also a church. Which they're shutting down. Sunday morning services with no child care. Bare bones. This is no small undertaking! Fumigation is the name of the game.

And, because I'm completely paranoid, I'm taking away half of my kids' stuffed animals and blankets and stuff. Because I figure it's less to have to wash later. Oh, and tea tree shampoo, because apparently lice hate the stuff, and my kids love it, so YAY.

Apparently, I can handle cohabitating with spiders and crickets, but you give me bugs the size of a grain of sand, and I'm all about the clean. Who knew.

4 comments:

Karen (Pediascribe) said...

Ugh. I'm always so afraid my kids will get lice. Just reading your post made me have to scratch my head several times. (shudder)
Here's hoping none of the critters make it into your house!

CA Sister said...

OK... should the little ukus get to your house, using Cetaphil "soap"... you know, the sensitive skin, slightly slimy stuff... ought to work. I guess you goop it on the child's head, and let it dry. Then wash away. Repeat as needed A friend had to do this after being dissatisfied with the chemicals... and said it worked like a charm. Stock up at Costco!

#2 said...

I was talking to one mom that ordered her organic stuff from somewhere on the internet. She waited with the bugs on her child's head over 24 hours without doing a thing, just waiting for her product to come in the mail. I want to know how she slept.

The little one and I might just make a Costco run tomorrow. The middle one can always use that stuff in the winter, since her skin nearly falls off every time it gets below 50 degrees.

I wonder if they sell shower caps at Costco. Can you say "paranoid, much?"

Stephen Tvedten said...

You can kill even resistant lice with salt water - How to kill lice without killing yourself or the earth......

The head louse (Pediculus humanus capitas) (DeGeer), the body louse (Pediculus humanus humanus) (Linnaeus) and the crab louse (Pthirus pubis) (Linnaeus) all occur on humans. All three cause considerable skin irritation as they feed on human blood or crawl on the body. Typhus, impetigo, trench fever and relapsing fever have all been transmitted by body and head lice. Scratching can lead to secondary bacterial infections leaving children feeling achy, feverish and/or lethargic.

Human lice can establish and maintain themselves only on humans. A louse cannot hop or jump. They can, however, crawl fast. They are usually transmitted only through close personal contact. They are less frequently transmitted through the sharing of personal articles or toilet seats. For head lice, this includes combs, brushes and other grooming aids, hats, headbands, helmets, caps, headrests, wigs, curlers or other headgear, especially when these items are stored in shared lockers. They spread or infest by crawling, they live by biting and sucking blood from the scalp and can survive for up to 48 hours off a human head, and the nits on a hair shaft can survive from 4 - 10 days - so vacuum thoroughly and/or spray/clean with diluted Safe Solutions, Inc. Enzyme Cleaner with Peppermint.

Head lice infestations have been a problem a long time - Pliny, a Greek naturalist (23-79 AD) suggested bathing in viper broth. Montezuma paid people to pick nits off his subjects, dried them and then saved them in his treasury. W. Coles in his 1657 book Adam in Eden: or Nature's Paradise noted that the oil from hyssop (Hyssopus) "killeth lice." Nicholas Culpeper in his 1681 The English Physician Enlarged recommended tobacco juice to kill lice on children's heads, a very early reference to the use of tobacco as an insecticide poison. Medical historians trace head lice infestations back 9,000 years! In the U. S. head lice are not "known" to spread disease or cause serious injury - they are only considered to be "repugnant". Like other U. S. public health agencies, the National Center for Disease Control and Prevention have never tracked head lice outbreaks, said official, Tom Skinner. Sometimes called "mechanized dandruff." Head lice may be nasty, itchy and very contagious, but the pediculicide poisons sold to get rid of lice are even worse.

Important Note: Pediculicide POISONS do not remove nits and are dangerous. Among the reactions to poison shampoo or lice "treatments" are seizures, mental retardation, many different allergies and respiratory problems, strange tingling, burning, itching, attention deficit disorders, brain tumors, leukemia, cancer and death. The Author does not suggest the use of pediculicide poisons to control lice.

Thoroughly vacuum each room daily wherever lice have been a problem and spray carpets and floors with (1 oz. per quart) or mop floors with (1 oz. - 2 oz. per gallon) Safe Solutions, Inc. Enzyme Cleaner with Peppermint and/or 1/2 cup of borax.

& Read the entire chapter on Lice located @ : http://www.thebestcontrol2.com.

The Author has used salt water to safely and effectiely kill lice (but the nits remain).

The Author also has used ½ oz. of Safe Solutions, Inc. Lice R Gone® Enzyme Shampoo and/or their Enzyme Cleaner with Peppermint per shampoo-type application to safely remove both lice and nits in a few minutes. These non-poisonous enzyme shampoos make the hair so slick lice and nits can't stick and lice can not live off the body for very long.

Be sure each child uses his/her own locker or hook and clothes and hair ornaments, combs and brushes.

Note: Lice are host specific; there are lice that attack goats that will not attack cattle. There are lice that are common external parasites affecting cattle, sheep, goats, swine, poultry and other livestock. Many organic farmers are looking for safe ways to control these pests without using dangerous, synthetic, chemical insecticide poisons. They should first try a fine-toothed metal lice or flea combs, Lice R Gone® or Safe Solutions, Inc. Enzyme Cleaner with Peppermint. Vigorously shampoo with Lice R Gone® enzyme shampoo per label directions and then, while still wet, comb with a regular comb to detangle the hair and then a fine-toothed metal flea or lice comb should be used to comb 1" sections of hair in order to remove the loosened nits. Then manually inspect the hair with a bright light for any remaining lice or nits before you rinse.

There are two kinds of lice that affect cattle/cows: biting lice and sucking lice. Lice are passed between animals as they feed or crowd together. Biting lice move along the topline (spine) and are about the size of a pin head, straw-colored and soft-bodied. Biting lice feed on dead skin and hair follicles. They are very common on cattle, sheep, goats and swine. All will be removed with Safe Solutions, Inc. enzyme cleaners or Lice R Gone®.

Sucking lice are blue-black and very small; they are attached to the skin. Inspect for them by scraping the skin with a knife and shaking the scrapings onto a stiff piece of white paper. Wash or (better yet) dip each animal from nose to tail with diluted Safe Solutions, Inc. Enzyme Cleaner with Peppermint and borax . Repeat treatment in 2 - 3 weeks. The enzyme/borax wash will still be effective in a dip tank and will control all other ectoparasites. Mix at a rate of 1 quart of Safe Solutions, Inc. Enzyme Cleaner with Peppermint and 5 pounds of borax to 50 gallons of water. (Note: You do not need the borax for lice.)

The word "lice" in Hebrew is "kinim" - one of the plagues God sent to punish Egypt was lice - even to this day parents and farmers respond to lice like they are truly plagues. Exod. 8:16-18

A staggering 20 million Americans find out each year we live in a lousy world - when they become infested or plagued with lice! The really lousy part of this is many are treated repeatedly with dangerous, volatile, synthetic pesticide poisons that no longer control the lice; some people have treated their children 10, 20 and even 30 or more times with over-the-counter poison shampoos without ever getting rid of the lice!

Enzyme, Surfactant and Peppermint Caution: Some people may experience a moderate skin irritation or slight eye irritation when using a combination of enzymes, surfactants and/or peppermint oils, such as those in Safe Solutions.

Caution: Before "treating" with any volatile pesticide poison shampoo or lotion, read the Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) for not only the active poison ingredient, but also for all of the "inerts." Never apply any pediculicide poison shampoo in the shower. The warm, close environment can allow a dangerously high amount of the poison to be absorbed. Observe all warning labels. Do not use a shower cap. These poisons are especially dangerous for pregnant or nursing women, children younger than 2 months, or anyone with asthma.

As an alternative, routinely wash with salt water and start combing - Once lice are detected, plan on spending one full day for each initial treatment, then daily for at least 2 weeks. Give yourself at least an hour per head - and with long hair, as much as two hours per head. Make sure your child is comfortable and occupied. Use an entertaining video, arts and craft project or coloring book to keep your child entertained and engrossed. Use a bright light, magnifying glass and metal (flea/nit) comb. Wash with hair conditioner and comb through each strand from top to bottom, removing nits with fingernails, combs, blunt scissors or tweezers. If the nits will not budge, snip off the hair. Recheck your child's head every 3 - 4 days for several more weeks. Or simply use Lice R Gone®,

Start cleaning - Everything that has been in direct contact with the infected child - bedding, clothing, towels, toys, dolls, cars, furniture, hats, combs, brushes - must either be vacuumed, laundered or dry cleaned daily; any items that can not go through the washer or the dryer or be thoroughly vacuumed should be placed in sealed plastic bags and kept isolated for at least 2 weeks.

The 1997-1998 head lice season had been particularly bad. Even in February, 1998 school nurses and parents were still telling us that children had their head lice "treated" with poisons 10 - 20 or even more times! Some children's parents were using over-the-counter poison treatments virtually daily to "treat" the resistant lice, even though the poison shampoo labels clearly warn people not to use these toxins more than once every 2 weeks! Never use any volatile, synthetic pesticide poison more than twice after it fails the first time! Safe Solutions, Inc. Enzyme Cleaner with Peppermint and Lice R Gone® do not contain any registered pesticide poisons and they have safely controlled even pesticide resistant lice. You can also order any of these products directly from Safe Solutions, Inc. at 1-888-443-8738 or online from Safe2Use at http://www.safesolutionsinc.com. If you are still having lice problems, read the latest chapter http://www.thebestcontrol2.com.