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Petroglyph PTA

Head Lice

If your child has lice, you DO NOT need to keep him/her home.  Provide treatment and alert the Health Office so the school nurse can perform a lice check when he/she comes to school the next day.

The management of head lice should not disrupt the educational process and APS Nursing Services supports the inclusion and academic achievement of students with verified cases of head lice, while implementing research-based prevention and control measures to minimize the spread of head lice among students attending APS.

Head lice are not responsible for the spread of any disease, are not a sign of un-cleanliness, and do not pose a health hazard. In-school transmission is considered to be rare and when transmission occurs, it is generally found among younger-age children with increased head-to-head contact.

Head lice tiny grey or brown bugs that live on the human head and glue their nits (lice eggs) to the hair.  Lice crawl quickly through the hair, so it can be hard to see.  Nits are on oblong shape, a beige color, and can usually be found close to the scalp, at the neck line, and behind the ears.  They stick to the head shaft and cannot be easily brushed away.

Lice do not hop or fly. They are most often spread by direct contact with another human head or less commonly, by using an infested brush or hat.  Lice do not cause disease but they are a pest that can easily spread to family members and close playmates.

In order to get rid of head lice and prevent others from becoming infested, we are asking you to take the following steps before your child comes to school tomorrow:

  • Under a bright light and using a magnifying glass or reading glasses if necessary, check your child’s head for lice and nits as soon as she or he gets home from school
  • Talk to your child's healthcare provider or the Public Health Department for the recommended treatment for your child.  Treatments for head lice include:
    • Over-the Counter (OTC) products.  Follow label instructions, including second application in 7 to 10 days if recommended.
    • Prescription products
    • Alternative therapies-natural and herbal.  These products have not been proven effective and are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
    • Non-chemical treatment: apply hair conditioner to wet washed hair; comb with a louse comb (special fine toothed comb), section off the hair and remove the lice a section at a time combing from the scalp out. Rinse the hair once the entire head has been combed. Repeat this process every two days over a 10 day period. Recheck the head for re-infestation once a week for one month. If adult lice are found, restart the combing process.
  • Wash personal items that have been in contact with your child’s head (pillowcases, clothing, hats, hair care items) in hot water (130 degrees) or place in a hot dryer for at least 20 minutes.
  • Vacuum carpets and furniture; chemical sprays are not needed and may be toxic
  • Check all family members for the presence of lice or nits and treat if needed.