Lice

Discussion in 'Preschool' started by Dzenna, Apr 5, 2008.

  1. Dzenna

    Dzenna Groupie

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    Apr 5, 2008

    Friday morning two of my children were absent. Mom called to say the children and their third grade brother had lice. We've had a lice issue in the primary grades all year, but I've been okay up til now. I did a head check and found one more. Friday afternoon the janitorial staff came in with harsh chemicals (and hazmat suits) and sprayed and wiped down the room. All pillows, dress up items, stuffed animals are bagged for 2 weeks.

    Here's my question. For those of you with pillows, stuffed animals, dress up clothes & hats, how do you clean these items to prevent lice spreading? What do you use? I've had these items for years without lice. Do I eliminate them to err on the safe side? I really don't want to.

    I was on the web all day yesterday and visited the local janitorial supply. Lysol kills viruses but not lice. There are very expensive sprays on the web. I don't know if they work. Consumer Reports says don't bother spraying. The janitorial supply has powders but their use is very time consuming and won't work for a daily basis.

    What do you all do? :help:
     
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  3. hawkeye

    hawkeye Companion

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    Apr 5, 2008

    Bleach water is your best friend, make a spray bottle and spray all the toys down with it. It will dry overnight and be perfectly safe. Also, make sure they are washed in high temp, seperately. Hope this helps!
     
  4. ecross1983

    ecross1983 Rookie

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    Apr 5, 2008

    Yes, bleach water is my best friend. We clean our room and toys as needed with bleach water. That is the only cleaning solution we use, it is the best. We use a sanitizer on our changing table...because we don't need the children getting bleach stains on their clothes.

    BUT we have had quite a few lice break outs since I have been there for a little over a year. We bag up all of the linens, stuffed animals, etc. and give them to the lady who does our laundry. She washes them and brings them back within a day or two. I'm not sure if that's good enough, but that is what she does.
     
  5. RainStorm

    RainStorm Phenom

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    Apr 5, 2008

    I teach an older grade, but in our school we aren't allowed to have soft pillows (unless the covers can be removed and washed in hot bleach water), rugs (unless they are the kind that can be washed in hot bleach water) etc. Dress up clothes are not permitted. If we go someplace, like a children's museum that has dress up clothes, we are not allowed to let our children use them.

    Better safe than sorry..and it isn't just lice..there are other skin diseases that can be spread through these items.
     
  6. teachall

    teachall Rookie

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    Apr 5, 2008

    Hi! I recently heard on Good Morning America that hot air dryers work best for killing lice in hair. I have also heard that you should wash everything in hot water and dry on the hot setting. This is suppose to kill them. Good Luck:2up:
     
  7. JaimeMarie

    JaimeMarie Moderator

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    Apr 5, 2008

    I would start washing your own hair in tea tree oil (shampoo) a couple of times a week that will help prevent you from getting it. We aren't allowed to have items at school (dress up, pillows, soft chairs......).
    Good luck.
     
  8. imat

    imat Rookie

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    Apr 5, 2008

    We do a daily health check as the children come in. It seems to keep the lice away!!! Also if we do find a child with them they are sent home at that time and can not return unless they are nit free.
     
  9. TeachWildThings

    TeachWildThings Comrade

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    Apr 5, 2008

    Hair Fairies (a company that deals with lice infestation) has some good suggestions online, they also address some of the myths.
     
  10. Dzenna

    Dzenna Groupie

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    Apr 5, 2008

    Thanks everyone!

    TeachWildThings- I read the Hair Fairies information. It was helpful.

    Jamie- I've been using the TeaTree shampoo and conditioner since the original lice breakout at our school in September. I read mixing tea tree oil with water and spraying my things is good prevention. I am considering that.

    I am considering getting rid of the clothes, hats, pillows and stuffed animals. All are washable, but I am thinking of daily prevention. I really love my dress up stuff though.
     
  11. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Apr 5, 2008

    I wouldn't get rid of it if it is washable but do be aware that it can be hard to treat lice. I went through 5 weeks of it with my own kiddos this summer. The daycare it came from did as well. They were washing, holding things back, treating, etc the entire time. The reason is because it takes time for eggs to hatch so sometimes parents think their heads are clear and they aren't OR some kids haven't yet found out that they do indeed have it. If it makes you feel better though this is the third time I've had these critters in my house (over the span of 11 years) and the first two times went away without an issue.

    Also you can eliminate everything and the kids will still pass it. Have you ever seen the way they play together??!! Instead of throwing these things away, you can wash them and put them in a large garbage bag and keep them out in the garage for the time being until it all passes (or at least 2 weeks).
     
  12. Dzenna

    Dzenna Groupie

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    Apr 5, 2008

    CutnGlue- Everything is bagged right now. I will see what I do with it after the two weeks pass. I agree with you about how play promotes the passing of lice.

    Play-based Pre-K is so different from an older classroom where they sit in desks. Pre-K'ers heads are often touch when they build with blocks, look at books, play with cars, pretend in housekeeping, dig in the sand box. They hug and wrestle. They are in close proximity when they dance during music and just sitting on the mat.
     
  13. MsWK

    MsWK Habitué

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    Apr 5, 2008

    We just wash everything frequently with hot water and on a hot dryer cycle. I struggle with using the soft items, because they can be germ factories, but in the end, I use them and pay close attention to cleaning, just because I don't believe in having everything in the children's environment
    be hard.
     
  14. sub&mom

    sub&mom Companion

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    Apr 5, 2008

    There is one bug bomb that kills lice. It is the Raid Fogger. It has to be the one that contains PERMETHRIN. It's the only one that I found that contains it.

    Also washing items in hot water and putting them in a high heat dryer will do the trick.

    There is also NEON NIT. It's a spray that you can use that will "light up" nits. It works pretty good.

    ugh...my head is itching now! LOL!

    Good Luck!
     
  15. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Apr 6, 2008

    NEON NIT??!!! Why didn't someone say that last summer when I was dealing with that. That's COOL!
     
  16. Dzenna

    Dzenna Groupie

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    Apr 6, 2008

    Neon Nit does not have the best reviews.

    The Nit Lite $27.89 is a magnifier/UV light that magnifies the nits and makes them glow. Great reviews.

    The Licemeister $9.89 is the best comb on the market. Recommended by many States and Lice Support Groups.

    I think I should change my screen name to NitPicker or LiceQueen :woot:
     
  17. tracer330

    tracer330 Rookie

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    Apr 6, 2008

    washing machine with hot water and bleach
     
  18. Proud2BATeacher

    Proud2BATeacher Phenom

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    Apr 6, 2008

    Extreme cold kills lice too, but I see you live in Cali, so this won't work for you :D! I could always tell who has lice in their house during the winter because I will see all their things piled out in front of their house.
     
  19. sub&mom

    sub&mom Companion

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    LOL!! It is cool!! It really helps finding those pesky little things! I thought it was great!
     
  20. memeskids

    memeskids Rookie

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    We wash everything that can be washed (HOT WATER) and bag everything else in black bags for 2 weeks.
    I have never heard of the neon nit...sounds great!
    We have to have soft areas and dress up for our children so I wash everything from those areas on a regular basis.
     
  21. teach&bfree

    teach&bfree Rookie

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    Feb 16, 2010

    I'm bumping up this thread, as I've begun student teaching once again and it's come up within the school that lice is going around. Students always keep their clothing items in garbage bags until it's time for recess or dismissal, but I'm terrified I could get it (Knock on wood -- may no one ever get this horrible thing!).

    I've been told to put 20 drops of tea tree oil in my shampoo to help prevent the spread of this. What is your experience with tea tree oil? Have you done this before?
     
  22. amethysst

    amethysst Rookie

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    Feb 17, 2010

    I launder the dress up clothes at least once a month.....and throwing in the dryer for items that can't be washed could help...or just bag up for two weeks and that is suppose to kill them as well.....

    But the thing that bothers me is a lot of people have said we are not allowed to have stuffed animals, soft chairs, etc...and yet these are all requirements for ECERS in our school....which does not make sense because large pillows and stuffed animals are definitely feeding ground for those little creatures.
     
  23. teach&bfree

    teach&bfree Rookie

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    Feb 17, 2010

    Amethysst:

    Not being rude AT ALL, please don't take it that way....Just wondering if you saw my previous post on page 2 re: Tea Tree Oil. Would really like to hear others' experience with it.

    Thank you
     
  24. mrachelle87

    mrachelle87 Fanatic

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    Feb 17, 2010

    Been there, done that. I was told by my doctor to put all stuffed toys, hats, and other items in black or dark green trashbags and leave in the sun for a couple of days. Kinda along the lines of the dryer. I also purchased lice spray at the drug store and sprayed the beds and couch down. I never had a problem with them in those items, but my daughter's hair was so thick it took days to get the nits out.
     
  25. scmom

    scmom Enthusiast

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    I just want to caution people about using sprays or pesticides at school. I know in our state it would violate the law because only certain chemicals can be used and notice has to be given before and after it is used. Leave it for the pros.

    I agree with the previous poster - it is hard to balance the desire to avoid lice with having all those soft items which are considered developmentally appropriate.
     
  26. amethysst

    amethysst Rookie

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    LOL not to worry teach&bfree....I have heard of Tea tree oil and use it on a regular basis...

    I have been fortunate and never had a problem with lice myself as a preschool teacher nor has anyone in my class....we seem to have one classroom in the school that always seems to have the problem no matter what they do....

    Don't know if it is the surroundings or if the teacher in that class is always lucky enough to have a student who gets it elsewhere and brings it to school....

    But I have been lucky....my daughter had it once when she was little and had a bad case of it!!! Glad I never had to repeat that!!!
     
  27. kimrandy1

    kimrandy1 Enthusiast

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    Feb 18, 2010

    Bleach water kills many germs, but it does not kill lice. Additionally, check with your school, because we are not allowed to use bleach in classrooms. We have a special, non-allergenic disinfectant that is safe to use near children. We can't even use Lysol or Lysol wipes, not even after the kids have left the room. A teacher last year was "formally disciplined" for having Lysol in her room.
     
  28. JaimeMarie

    JaimeMarie Moderator

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    Feb 18, 2010

    Teach&bfree,
    Last school year I had 14 out of 17 children with head lice in my classroom. My aide and I used tea tree shampoo and conditioner neither of us caught the lice. The oil is a pain to get into your shampoo correctly, so buying the shampoo is easier at least for me.
     
  29. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    Feb 18, 2010

    I was thinking the bleach is great----but not against lice.

    I laugh whenever we get to the nitty gritty topics here. Some programs have rules against soft items, others (me included) are required to have them. Some programs can't have bleach at all (I have to--required) and others are required NOT to use the non chlorine santitizers (that would be me---we can't use it at all).

    Just cracks me up----the non alignment our field lives with.

    We are a great crowd to do what we do each day---and smile.
     
  30. Hoot Owl

    Hoot Owl Aficionado

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    I don't keep things that lice can live in, it's regrettable, but the truth.
     
  31. teach&bfree

    teach&bfree Rookie

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    Just an update:

    Bought a 50ml container of Tea Tree Oil @ Wal Mart for around ~12 CAD. Put 20 drops each in both my shampoo and conditioner and shook the containers. I've also read to put some drops on your comb and brush that through one's hair. I did that as well. Call me terrified, yes, but I'd rather be safe than sorry.

    I've used Tea Tree shampoos in the past, but they have severely dried my hair and scalp.
     
  32. sarzacsmom

    sarzacsmom Groupie

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    Denorex shampoo with coal tar in it will prevent you from getting it as well-- they don't like it at all!
     
  33. teach&bfree

    teach&bfree Rookie

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    I wonder how great that smells :lol:
     
  34. sarzacsmom

    sarzacsmom Groupie

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    The Denorex actually isn't bad at all. I use it and it really leaves my hair shiny and soft-- it's a dandruff treatment shampoo---
     

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