children's hair care

Lice Alert: How to Handle and Prevent Infestations in Children

Discovering that your child has lice can be stressful and overwhelming, but it’s important to stay calm and take swift action to address the issue effectively. Here’s a step-by-step guide on what to do if your child has lice:

1. Confirm the Diagnosis

Inspect your child’s scalp carefully for signs of lice, including small, sesame seed-sized insects crawling near the scalp, as well as tiny white or yellowish eggs (nits) attached to the hair shafts close to the scalp. You may also notice itching, redness, or small red bumps on the scalp and neck. If you suspect lice infestation, consult with your child’s pediatrician or school nurse for confirmation and guidance.

2. Inform Close Contacts

Notify anyone who has been in close contact with your child, such as family members, friends, or classmates, so they can check for lice and take appropriate precautions if necessary. Lice can easily spread through direct head-to-head contact or by sharing personal items like hats, combs, and hair accessories.

3. Treat the Infestation

Choose an appropriate lice treatment based on your child’s age, health condition, and the severity of the infestation. Over-the-counter lice shampoos or treatments containing pyrethrin or permethrin are commonly used to kill lice and their eggs. Follow the instructions carefully when applying the treatment and be sure to cover all affected areas of the scalp and hair. After treatment, use a fine-toothed lice comb to remove dead lice and nits from the hair shafts.

4. Clean and Disinfect

Thoroughly clean and disinfect any personal items that may have come into contact with lice, such as clothing, bedding, hats, hairbrushes, and hair accessories. Machine wash and dry clothing and bedding at high temperatures, and seal non-washable items in a plastic bag for at least 2 weeks to suffocate any remaining lice. Vacuum upholstered furniture and carpets and discard vacuum bags or clean the vacuum thoroughly afterward.

5. Prevent Reinfestation

Take steps to prevent lice from returning or spreading to others by following these precautions:

Encourage your child to avoid close head-to-head contact with others.

Instruct your child not to share personal items like hats, hairbrushes, combs, or hair accessories.

Teach your child good hygiene practices, such as washing their hands regularly and avoiding sharing personal items with others.

Perform routine head checks on your child and family members, especially if lice outbreaks occur at school or in the community.

6. Monitor and Follow-Up:

Keep an eye on your child’s scalp and hair for any signs of lice or nits in the weeks following treatment. It may be necessary to repeat the lice treatment or use additional combing techniques to ensure that all lice and eggs have been eliminated. If the infestation persists or if your child develops severe itching, irritation, or skin infections, consult with your pediatrician for further evaluation and treatment options.

Dealing with a lice infestation can be challenging, but with prompt treatment, thorough cleaning, and preventive measures, you can effectively manage the situation and help your child return to normal activities with confidence. Remember to seek support from healthcare professionals, school officials, and other parents if needed, and reassure your child that lice infestations are common and treatable.

Debunking Common Myths About Children’s Hair

As parents, we often find ourselves navigating a sea of advice when it comes to caring for our children, and one area that is full of myths and misconceptions is children’s hair care. From old wives’ tales to well-intentioned but misguided advice, it can be challenging to separate fact from fiction. In this blog post, we’ll debunk some common myths about children’s hair and provide evidence-based insights to help you make informed decisions for your little one’s locks.

Myth 1: Cutting a Baby's Hair Makes It Grow Thicker

One of the most common myths surrounding children’s hair is the belief that cutting a baby’s hair will make it grow back thicker and fuller. However, the thickness and texture of a child’s hair are determined by genetics, not the act of cutting. Hair growth occurs at the hair follicles beneath the scalp, and cutting the visible part of the hair has no impact on the thickness or density.

Little boy getting haircut - Pigtails & Crewcuts Smyrna
Girl getting her hair brushed - Pigtails & Crewcuts Smyrna

Myth 2: Brushing 100 Strokes a Day Promotes Healthier Hair

The notion that brushing a child’s hair 100 strokes a day will make it healthier is a myth rooted in the past. Excessive brushing can lead to breakage and damage, especially if done with force. Instead, opt for gentle brushing to detangle knots and distribute natural oils evenly. Over-brushing can strip the hair of its natural oils and result in a dry, brittle texture.

Myth 3: Shaving a Baby's Head Enhances Hair Growth

Like the myth about cutting a baby’s hair, some believe that shaving a baby’s head will stimulate hair growth. However, hair growth patterns are determined by genetics, and shaving a baby’s head won’t change this. It’s essential to allow your child’s hair to grow naturally and avoid unnecessary practices that may cause discomfort or stress.

Myth 4: Frequent Washing Is Necessary for Healthy Hair

Contrary to the belief that frequent hair washing is essential for maintaining healthy locks, young children typically do not need daily washing. Washing too frequently can strip the hair of its natural oils, leading to dryness and potential irritation. Instead, aim for a gentle cleansing routine based on your child’s hair type and activity level.

Fairy Tales Lifeguard Clarifying Shampoo and Fairy Tales Lemon-Aid Conditioner - Pigtails & Crewcuts Smyrna/Vinings
Boy getting hair cut - Pigtails & Crewcuts Smyrna

Myth 5: Hair Loss in Children Is Always a Cause for Concern

While it can be alarming for parents to notice hair shedding in their children, it’s essential to differentiate between normal shedding and abnormal hair loss. Children naturally shed hair as part of the hair growth cycle. If you notice sudden or excessive hair loss, consult a healthcare professional to rule out any underlying medical conditions.

By dispelling these common myths about children’s hair, parents can make more informed decisions and provide the best care for their little ones’ locks. Remember that each child is unique, and understanding their specific hair needs will contribute to a healthy and happy head of hair.

We offer a child-friendly line of hair care products at Pigtails & Crewcuts Smyrna/Vinings.