Causes And Symptoms Of Head Lice


Head lice are not a health hazard, a sign of poor hygiene, or a cause of disease. Head lice are tiny, wingless, parasitic insects that live in human hair. They are a common problem and highly contagious. They can also be hard to get rid of. The eggs are known as nits.

A louse injects saliva into the host while feeding to prevent blood from clotting. This can result in an allergic, itching sensation for the host. Scratching the irritated skin can lead to a secondary bacterial infection. Apart from this, head lice do not transmit disease, and they are not dangerous.

  • Head lice are tiny insects that live on the scalp, usually on children aged 10 years and under. They can move easily between hairs, at a rate of 9 inches a minute, but they cannot fly or jump. The lice need human blood to survive, and they starve within 2 days if they are removed from their host. They are usually caught directly from another person through direct head-to-head contact. Pets do not play a role.

I will be discussing the causes, and symptoms below:

Causes Of Head Lice:

A head lice infestation results from the direct transfer of lice from the hair of one person to the hair of another through head-to-head contact.

Head lice cannot fly or jump, but sometimes they can be transmitted on personal items, so it is sensible to avoid sharing brushes, combs, headbands, headphones, towels, clothing, or hats with anyone who has an active infestation.

An infestation does not result from dirty hair or poor hygiene, and it can occur in hair of any length or condition. Head lice cannot be passed on to or caught from animals.

Head lice may be able to survive under water for several hours, and chlorine levels in a swimming pool do not kill them. However, they are unlikely to be spread through pool water. They tend to hold tightly to hair when submerged in water.

Symptoms Of Head Lice:

  • 1.) Itching. The most common symptom of a lice infestation is itching on the scalp, neck and ears. This is an allergic reaction to louse bites. When a person has a lice infestation for the first time, itching may not occur for four to six weeks after infestation.
  • 2.) Lice on the scalp. Lice may be visible but are difficult to spot because they’re small, avoid light and move quickly.
  • 3.) Lice eggs (nits) on hair shafts. Nits stick to hair shafts. Incubating nits may be difficult to see because they’re very tiny. They’re easiest to spot around the ears and the hairline of the neck. Empty nits may be easier to spot because they’re lighter in color and further from the scalp. However, the presence of nits doesn’t necessarily indicate an active infestation.
  • 4.) Sores on the scalp, neck, and shoulders. Scratching can lead to small, red bumps that may sometimes get infected with bacteria.

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