Do I need to worry about lice?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by DreamToTeach, Jun 3, 2008.

  1. DreamToTeach

    DreamToTeach Companion

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    Hello! I will be ready to have my own classroom in a year and I have been getting things together here and there. I want to have hats for different events. I have a few ideas. One is one of those silly birthday cake hats for a birthday kid. A wizard hat for the 'Word Wizard,' an Einstein wig for the kid who advances a notch in the Einstein Club or is demonstrating a science experiment, etc. But, as I'm thinking of all these ideas, I got worried about lice. Would this create a problem? I don't want to be spreading lice all around the classroom. Is there something you can treat the cloth hats with between kids to kill the lice? I have 3 daughters and they've never gotten lice at school, but I know it could be a problem. What do you think?
     
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  3. devama

    devama Companion

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    I personally wouldn't do it, but thats only because we have had a huge lice problem. You might want to try it. You can always treat the hats if you know a student has lice, but that doesn't tell you how long they've had it and been wearing the hats. Sorry to be a downer. :(
     
  4. lemonhead

    lemonhead Aficionado

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    I am sure many will disagree, but I would say don't let lice stop you from the hat idea. If a child has lice another child can get it fairly easily with or without a hat. Borrowing a coat from lost and found can give a kiddo lice. Laying with a friend on the floor can too. Our school had a lot of lice cases this year. There is a large family and they keep bringing it back into the school. It is always in their children's classrooms.

    Usually one child will get it in the classroom and then the nurse sends home the note that they need the treatment and then they are supposed to do the treatment again in like 7 to 10 days. In the next day or two the child will come back in and the nurse has to clear the child. Around this time, maybe one or two more in that class will get it. That's usually it.

    The problem is some parents aren't doing the second treatment or aren't treating the suspect areas at home according to our school nurse, and the lice returns.

    Anyway, if you do end up having a case of lice you will need to put pillows, stuffed animals, and those hats in trashbags and seal them up for 14 days. That will kill the little buggers.
     
  5. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    I wonder if Lysol or something similar can kill lice and lice eggs. If so, I would think you could spray the hats and wigs down after each day.
     
  6. Proud2BATeacher

    Proud2BATeacher Phenom

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    I would still use the hats. Lice doesn't live long on clothing and you could store them in a plastic bag between usage. I am sure that you could buy something to spray on it between uses -- ask a pharmacist for suggestions.
     
  7. lemonhead

    lemonhead Aficionado

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    Yeah, maybe you could start with the hats and if you end up with the epidemic you can stop it. It is a cute idea. If I had a lice problem in the classroom I wouldn't start a hat program.
     
  8. DreamToTeach

    DreamToTeach Companion

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    Thanks for the input! Maybe I'll ask a pharmacist or the doc the next time I have to be there. One teacher I subbed for had a hat for the birthday kid and they shared, so maybe I'll ask her if she has ever had a problem. I was planning on having bean bags and comfy things for the library area, so I guess I'd have to worry about that too!
     
  9. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    I lived with a lice problem in our house for FIVE weeks last summer and I PROMISE I was doing everything and more to get rid of it. We've had it a few times over the years and the other times it went away with one treatment of everything. Not this time.


    There is a spray for upholstry that you can use. Also, stuffed animals are recommended to be put in a plastic bag for 2 weeks before being able to be played with again. I'm thinking they don't recommend the spray on the toys because kids put them in their mouth, etc. I don't know how completely the spray works. What is even better is WASHING the hats if possible.

    Are multiple kids wearing them on the same day? If not, just put them in a plastic bag and you are fine.
     
  10. lemonhead

    lemonhead Aficionado

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    They are some stubborn little things aren't they? A friend of mine put vinegar and olive oil on his daughter's head to get rid of them. It's terrible when it is in your house I'm sure.
     
  11. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    My kids cried the third, 4th and 5th week because of all the treatments. We had to treat 3 floors and go to the laundromat. There is so much that goes into treating the house. We even got fed up, bought color coded brushes and towels to make sure nobody was sharing stuff.
     
  12. Proud2BATeacher

    Proud2BATeacher Phenom

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    I heard baby oil also works.
     
  13. Proud2BATeacher

    Proud2BATeacher Phenom

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    Here's my lice story. When I was a special ed. consultant I was visiting a student in a kg. class. It was story time so I sat down on the carpet with the students. One student asked to sit on my lap, I said sure and I had a few other students crowd around me. After the story the students were talking to each other and the student sitting on my lap says to a friend "My mom says that I have eggs in my head.", another students say "Hey! I have egss in my head to." Then a few other students started talking about their eggs. The teacher told me that her principal refused to send the students with lice home because they will be missing school.
     
  14. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    YIKES!
     
  15. shasha379

    shasha379 Devotee

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    So just infect the whole class? :eek:
     
  16. mandagap06

    mandagap06 Devotee

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    O my goodness!!! I have forgotten all about that problem. We got checked for lice when I was in elem. school, but now that I am a sub I have forgotten about it! I pray I never get it! Reading all these posts made me iche all over lol.Just thinking about lice in my hair is soo gross.
     
  17. KinderCowgirl

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    I say try it and if you have a lice problem pop up then maybe you will need another plan. There is a spray you can use, it's pretty toxic though-I don't know if I'd use it on clothing. If you haven't purchased anything yet, maybe look for something washable that can go in the dryer. I let my kids talk Walkmans home to listen to stories and ended up having to buy individual sets of headphones labeled for each child. You can adapt it if you need to.

    FYI - our nurse won't send kids home either, it's so infuriating-it's impossible to get rid of it if we just keep reinfecting the room. She sends them back with a note that it's just hair gel. I wasn't aware hair gel moves through a child's head. One teacher taped one of the bugs to a note and sent it down to the principal - that child was sent home pretty quickly!
     
  18. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    My head started to itch as soon as I started to read this thread...lol.

    On the serious side, don't let lice stop you. Strange as it may seem, flea spray works wonders on lice. My kids kept coming home from school with lice (turns out there was this ONE child who did the routine another poster said...treated, not retreated, house not treated, reinfected, reinfected the class...it was miserable). Anyway, my kids pedi reccomended the same flea spray I use on my cats. He suggested I use in on all my furniture and bedding and just let it air for an hour or so before I let my kids back on. My kid's teacher used it in her classroom as well and the rated of infecting other children went down drastically. It seems, that the stuff designed to repell fleas and ticks on your kittens and puppies also does wonders for repelling lice.
     
  19. cheeryteacher

    cheeryteacher Enthusiast

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    There was a big lice problem in my school this year. And my niece got ringworm :(. I wouldn't let the kids share anything.
     
  20. cheeryteacher

    cheeryteacher Enthusiast

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    I heard we almost had to shut the school down to treat for lice.
     
  21. ku_alum

    ku_alum Aficionado

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    If you investigate for a product to spray between uses, you might check with your coaches. Back in my softball days our helmets were treated with something between games.
     
  22. Sheila

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    Maybe you can get plastic hats and make a birthday/wizard/whatever hat? If you do down the scrapbook aisle there are some pretty neat decals and ornaments to glue on a plastic hat. Then you can just you a lysol wipe after each use.
     
  23. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    You could also consider paper hats that they get to keep. Except for the birthday hat, they could earn them as rewards.
     
  24. TulipsGirl

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    In our school, students are not allowed to share hats, brushes ponytail holders or other hair supplies. It's considered a hygiene issue, here. (That is not to say that someone who has lice is not clean! But the idea not to share hair supplies is one encouraged by the hygiene commitee.) Lice is too common and difficult to get rid of. It can take weeks of treatments, constant laundry, more treatments and more laundry. It can also be painful. I'd discourage it.
     
  25. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    Like other posters, my head started itching the minute I saw this thread!

    Anyone care to guess the types of hair lice prefer? Turns out (info from my father-in-law, who was a health department inspector) that they just LOVE CLEAN, SHINY BLOND HAIR! That isn't to say that others don't get them as well. When my daughter was in 2nd grade, she KEPT getting reinfected at school, in spite of the "lice letter" being sent to all parents and any infected kids sent home to stay there until they could "pass the lice test," so to speak.

    The first time, my daughter and I were both infected (YUCK). I think she infected me simply by using MY brush! At school, the girls are notorious for sharing brushes, barrettes, headbands, etc., and for putting their heads together while working in groups, playing, gossiping, etc. My husband didn't get infected, because he used a totally different brush.

    I had to treat my ENTIRE house multiple times, though. Eventually, the lice get smart or become immune to the sprays & shampoos. My daughter's pediatrician prescribed a tube of cream that we had to put on her head & put a plastic shower cap over it & time it for like 3 hours! That FINALLY got rid of them. By that time, my entire house smelled like bug spray....
     
  26. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    Another thing my kids' pedi suggested to me to help prevent ME from getting lice (since I do work in a school as well) is good ole head and shoulders dandruff shampoo. Turns out, that while it won't actually kill lice, it does create a hostile enough environment that lice simply don't want to nest.
     
  27. mrachelle87

    mrachelle87 Fanatic

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    The problem most people have is they don't remove the nits. They are hard little buggers to get out of long, thick hair. My daughter got lice the last week of school from a little girl last summer. Most of the time she wears her hair up, but the one day I let her wear it down!! We fought them all summer. I treated every 7 days for about 5 weeks. I would spend hours combing her hair. I tried the baby oil, the lotions, the creams, the shampoos, the prescription shampoo, and every thing else. Her hair needed to be thinned, but it is against the law for a beautician to cut or style the hair of someone with lice. So we had to wait until we got rid of every nit. Some where hard (plus I was a little paranoid...I thought dandruff was nits. Seems that stuff dries out your scalp.) The best stuff was the rite aid stuff from my local grocery (and it was a lot cheaper than the name brand stuff.)

    Get one of those real big baggies and seal the hats in them between wears. I wanted a large bathtub with pillows, but have rethought it because of the lice problem.

    By the way, my doctor said lice are like humans...they prefer clean hair over dirty. If you watch the Housewives of New York (not sure about the name) the Countess on there was talking about her children having headlice and how hard it was to get rid of. In other countries it is not a social stigma like it is here in United States.
     
  28. EMonkey

    EMonkey Connoisseur

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    I would use them with caution. My whole school had huge problems with lice this year. If they keep getting spread which can happen very easily (we found out about three weeks after the parents knew) because it is not always obvious that someone has it. It is very costly to the families. Depending on the lice removal they decide to use it can cost up to several hundred dollars. The sprays that are used on furniture and rugs for lice could not be used in the district I work in due to toxic substance ordinaces that specify what can and can not be used around children.
     
  29. TulipsGirl

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    Yes, you need to worry about lice!

    Given that lice can be painful (they don't just walk around your head, they feed.) costly and HUGE stress, I think that students should be encouraged not to share hair supplies, just as they are encouraged to prevent germs by washing hands and throwing away tissues. Again, it doesn't mean your dirty (they DO like clean heads!) it just means try to prevent what you can.
     
  30. Jem

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    I wanted to get a wig for a huge event here in San Fran, so my husband, friend and I went into a wig/hair shop. I found a great short hot pink one and tried it on to see if it looked right. I was seriously considering getting it when the cashier rushed up and starting yelling at me for wearing it, saying his best customers are 'street people' (prostitutes? homeless? do they really wear hot pink wigs??), and that I now need to treat myself for lice. First off, this wig was FOR SALE-why would it have lice on it? Secondly, I was mortified. My husband made me go straight to Walgreens for a shampoo wash. Hearing your stories makes me feel a bit better about this and able to share. I haven't even told my mom about that. It still makes me feel shame.

    My mom, a former elementary principal, use to make me check her hair every night for lice, because kids would come up and hug her and she was super paranoid. I never found anything.

    Despite these stories, I would still do the hats because I'm super stuborn and hate to see my visions derailed. I'll probably really have lice within the next four months....

    I think it's a great idea, by the way.
     
  31. Rabbitt

    Rabbitt Connoisseur

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    The hat idea is awesome...
    but not for my classroom.
    I have battled lice before and it's horrible
    to get rid of.
    Plus hurts esteem.
    I avoid EVERYTHING where lice may lurk.
     
  32. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

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    I hear lice can jump 24"
     
  33. shouldbeasleep

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    Amen!
    Use plastic or paper. Don't let lice start moving from kid to kid!

    Every once in awhile, after a math lesson of intense competition, I use paper crowns from Burger King, cover the logo with my own statement ("Fraction King" "High Emperess of Estimation" " Divine Dictator of Decimal Division", whatever my mind or kids comes up with) and make the 5th grader wear it all day. Such fun. They act like it embarasses them, but it doesn't.

    But I have no intention of making a Lynchpin of Lice hat, so nothing made out of cloth that gets passed from child to child.
     
  34. MissFroggy

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    I didn't read the other posts, but if there is ever a lice problem, you could buy some of those plastic head things people wear when dying hair or working someplace where you might need something like that. they could wear those under the wigs or hats.
     
  35. AngelM

    AngelM Rookie

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    Hi. I just have to weigh in on this because of personal experiences in this area . . .

    I think your idea sounds very cute, but I wouldn't go through with it. When my daughter was in second grade there was one child who had head lice off and on all year. As a result, the rest of the class was continually catching them from her. My daughter had thick, thick, long hair and getting rid of those creatures was a nightmare. I will also tell you that a lot of parents complained to the administration that year that not enough was being done to control the epidemic. I felt like that teacher took a lot of heat. I would hate for the same to happen to you.

    I had a case of lice in my classroom this year. One case was enough, too! I did all that I could to make sure it didn't become an epidemic there. They really are a pain to get rid of once they get started.

    Good luck with your decision!
     
  36. Miss D 530

    Miss D 530 Rookie

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    I had a lice problem this year, and while your hat idea is really fantastic, I wouldn't suggest it
     

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