Tuesday, July 1, 2008

The pitter patter of little feet-

I know I should have heeded the warning. The writing was on the wall-posted to the afterschool program door. Flyers were distributed in every parents inbox, and I threw mine out.

ATTENTION PARENTS: HEAD LICE HAVE BEEN DETECTED! PLEASE CHECK YOUR CHILDREN.

So I checked, and saw nothing. I don't even know what lice LOOK like, I've never had them, my son didn't have them, other than a few dandruff flakes everything looked just fine. So I stopped checking. School got done and the kids had a week off before the afterschool program became the summer camp program. My daughter wasn't itching, or complaining of anything in her hair. I brushed her hair daily, but lately it'd been a mess. Her hair is somewhat fine, and knots up very easily. I've been using detangler but ran out, so she had Daddy, who is somewhat more gentle than me-brushing her hair. With my brush- this morning.

Deja sleeps with me most of the time, Daddy works nights and she feels comforted with me. I don't mind, we'd been having thunderstorms in the evening and I know that they scare her. This morning, all went well. She got up and got her hair brushed by Daddy and off she went to summer camp.

It wasn't until early evening that we noticed the insane itching. Hubby and I looked at each other and thought the same thing. And suddenly I began to feel a little tingling in my scalp, and an uncontrollable urge to itch. It's still going on, which is why I am still wide awake at 2 am. Plus I am still digesting my pizza from Papa John's.

I discovered the critters around 9:30, as she was settling down for the night and Daddy was getting ready to go to work. I had him look, sure enough, there were things walking around. We looked on the internet and it said to check behind her ears and by the neck. Mmmm... a gold mine. Eggs, live critters, I could have started a farm in her hair from the looks of it. Grandma had her the day before, and put a hair tie in for her, and she didn't mention anything. Grandmas are supposed to know these things-but my mother never had lice, I never had lice, so she's never even seen one herself.

At 10 pm I was on my way to Walmart, the only place open at that time. I got 2 shampoos, I wanted spray, gel, combs, the whole kit and kaboodle, but my options were limited. The Rid shampoo came with a nit comb, a pretty purple one. I started applying the solution and the live ones, the bigger ones were looking for a safe haven. There were a few, and it wasn't pretty. The lighting was dark, it was nighttime, but I had to do something to get these things out. My daughter patiently stayed up way past her bedtime as I tried to comb out what I could see. I know more still exists. She was so tired, I was tired, my son was freaking out and hubby was not too worried, he'd seen them before in his native Guatemala.

Today is another day, another day to kill those ugly looking things. Another trip to CVS, loads of hot laundry on an even hotter day, more combing to do. Deja is totally freaked out about bugs in her hair, any 6 year old girl is usually freaked out about bugs. Today I will shampoo as well, and hubby too. My son has a pretty much shaved head, so while he's grossed out, he's not worried. Time to get the sprays, the plastic bags, the more effective combs, and some solution that is supposed to loosen the glue that these nits have on the hair and wash them right off. Oh, and buy new brushes, pillows, and anything else I might have thrown out in my mad rush to rid the house of creatures.

Brujita looks at me like its not a big deal. I mean, after all, she has fleas, right? Yup, and that is why she gets the once a month treatment so I don't get fleas. With 3 cats, every month gets downright expensive. Well, I am going to try to get some sleep, for a few hours. No summer camp this week, no wonderful Fourth of July-I've got my own battles to win here, and I have every intention of doing so.

I just feel so grossed out and dirty, but I know it's not something I had at my house before and I am mortified that this could happen here. Even embarassed writing about this, but realize it is not something that I could control. She got lice, she may even get them again in the future, who knows? But next time, I will be prepared...

UPDATE: After $100 spent at CVS this morning and my paranoia getting the best of me, I continued in my quest for total hair domination. No alien parasitic lifeform was getting the best of me and my family! I do understand why they say only leave RID on for 10 minutes... I swear my scalp is on fire, and I didn't have any nits or so hubby says-in the first place. But 50 minutes just because you are paranoid is a big difference from the 10 minutes max. Deja still had some live creepy crawlies today, moving albeit more slowly-we combed 3x today. Outdoors. I sprayed the bed, laundry still has to be done-tomorrow we try rubbing alcohol with cotton balls, or mayo-those little suckers are GLUED on to the hair shaft pretty tight, but I did get tons out
today and they are getting harder to see now. Progress is a wonderful thing.

6 comments:

Purple Sparkle said...

Oh poor you what a nightmare! Remember they're only attracted to clean hair though, so you're not dirty!

Anyway, some good news, you are my wax cookie winner!!

Please email your address to purplesparklecrafts@googlemail.com and I'll get your cookies sent off to you!

Becky :)

Jes said...

Oh no!...but i do have a quick and EFFECTIVE natural remedy for head lice...pour baby oil on the affected head and wrap hair in a towel. the oil smothers the lice and they are NO MORE!!!!hope that helps! :)good luck! :)

thekoolaidmom said...

Oh man... been there, done that! It's a nightmare. With three kids, the oldest is 15, and having run and worked in daycares, I've got a few tricks about this. When you first suspect (i.e. the warning on the door) take olive oil and saturate your child's hair (yours, hubby's... the cat if you're really paranoid ;-D ) then cover with a shower cap. Leave it in for about 12 hours (I usually leave it over night.) then wash out thoroughly. The oil suffocates the lice but it doesn't kill the nits, which is why this works best when as a prevention of infestation. Dipping the nit comb in vinegar and hot water is another helpful trick in getting the nits out.

You can only use the chemicals a couple times, but you can use the oil to your hearts content. AND the oil is healthy for your hair. :-D hope that might help!

Liz said...

Boy did your story bring back memories! With 3 girls with very long hair I was at the point of tears and frustration. I lived in Canada at this time and they have a company called Licesquad. It was the best money I had every spent. Within 3 hours my whole family was lice and nit free. Plus they don't use pesticides!

Like you I had just about boiled everything that wasn't nailed down on a daily basis. Found out from Licesqaud that it was not necessary. Plus buying the spray for furniture etc. does absolutely nothing but add more pesticide to the environment. All you have to do is place items in the dryer for 30 minutes or vacuum throughly. If items cannot be vacuumed or placed in the dryer, just leave them alone for 48 hours. (I was previously told by a doctor, to bag everything for 2 weeks). The main thing is that there is nothing that will kill the eggs and they have to be removed manually. They have one of the best combs, called the Terminator! It certainly saved me a lot of time compared to those lousy plastic ones that are really useless.

If you need more information, they do have some excellent advice on their website.

quitecontrary1977 said...

my best friend was the "licey kid" at school so i got them a couple times.it is a little gross, isn't it! lol! just part of life.. thanks for entering my giveaway!

Qtpies7 said...

You could try Lice MD, it doesn't have the bad chemicals in it.

We had lice once, the kids must have brought it home from church, as we homeschooled. We noticed it when I went to get my hair cut, which they refused to do! Ugh! It was horrible! The kids slept with me a lot, so I got them, too.