Can My Hair Straightener be used to Kill My Kid’s Lice? The menace of these has been with us since ancient times. Commonly found in children, these little bugs have proven to be a hard nut to crack when attempting to get rid of them.
What is Lice?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), head lice are tiny insects that live on your scalp and feed on blood.
Lice lay their eggs in your hair, called nits. Nits are tiny oval egg cases attached to the hair near your scalp.
They are usually yellow or white and can be as small as a grain of sand.
Where did My Kid Get Lice?
Kid’s lice can catch you off guard.
One minute everything is going great, and then you shampoo their hair and find lice.
This is because of how easily they spread from one individual to another, mostly through physical contact with an infected person.
Contact may occur in terms of sharing clothing materials such as scarves and caps or simply using infested combs and hairbrushes.
Stuffed toys and seats may also be proven to be hosts for lice at home, and using them could lead to an infestation of lice.
When you have these parasites, it can cause terrible irritation, itching, and a feeling of movement on your scalp.
Lice have also been found to cause open sores on the scalp.
These holes are the result of lice feeding blood for survival.
Due to these parasites, pharmaceutical companies studied several ways to kill these bugs.
Most nit-killing products are made with Permethrin lotion, Piperonyl butoxide with pyrethrins, and Dimethicone.
However, styling tools paved the way in this modern world, and some people have used a flat iron to kill the lice for good.
Shells will stay on the strands of hair until they are removed by handpicking or combing.
Do hair straighteners kill nits?
Heat Can Kill Lice
It won’t matter if you use the most expensive or affordable hair straightener.
Any hair straightener or flat iron will be fine.
The flat iron works by straightening hair using heat, and head lice are destroyed by high temperatures above 40 degrees Celsius.
Flat iron, therefore, passes as an effective tool for killing hair lice.
When used to style hair on an infected person, a flat iron can kill the adult lice and the nymphs.
Adult lice survive on the head by hanging onto strands of hair with claws found at the end of their feet.
Therefore, a good flat iron session would be effective in destroying these bugs for good.
The nymphs (the younger lice hatched after a week on the head) also hang onto the hair and feed on blood to survive.
This means they, too, would be destroyed using a flat iron.
But what about the nits?
All About Nits
Nits refer to the lice eggs laid by the female lice on the human scalp.
The Lice Removal Clinic has great information on nits.
Nits are small, approximately 2-4mm long, and yellow, whitish.
They are found on the hair shaft close to the scalp.
They hatch into nymphs seven days after being laid.
Due to their position on the head, nits are almost impossible to remove using a flat iron.
As we know, when using a flat iron to style your hair, you must be careful not to burn your scalp.
Constant heat styling has also been proven to destroy hair follicles, besides presenting a danger to your hair and scalp.
Nits, due to their size, may also be hard to recognize.
The nits are often mistaken for dandruff or wisps of spray and may be ignored.
Thus, the nits would result in a whole new crop of lice and hatch again in 7-10 days.
So when finding a solution for that lice infestation, for good.
After all, we don’t want to risk burning our scalps and destroying all that beautiful hair.
Other Options to Try
You could exploit these other options to get rid of the lice completely.
Get recommended hair care products from health care practitioners to eliminate lice and kill the nits.
There is a large variety of lice killing kits, prescription medicines, in shampoo, sprays, creams, etc., to kill lice.
She is parting your hair using a special comb and picking out the lice and the nits.
Use a hairdryer to dry out freshly washed hair.
*Caution– Do not use a hairdryer when you have applied chemical-based creams for lice.
Some of them may contain flammable substances.
There are Better Options to Kill Lice
If you’ve experienced a lice investation, you know if it is not treated quickly, the problem becomes larger and harder to control. You need to act quickly. Lice are highly adaptable and reistant so you need something to treat lice that is quick and effective.
A home hair straightner won’t kill the nits on the hair shafts, where the majority of nits are. A hair straightner may kill adult lice or some numpys, but it won’t kill the eggs. Without killing the eggs, you are risking a larger infestation. It’s true that lice and nits can’t survive high heat (temperatures above 113-degrees F. But getting close to the scalp is challenging and can cause damage to your child’s scalp, including burns and blisters.
Rather than using a straightening iron, you should opt for a better way of dealing with head lice.
Here are better alternatives for killing Lice:
- Non-toxic lice kits for hair
- Chemical Base Lice Treatments for hair
- Presciption medication from your child’s pediatrician
We practiced preventative care when my children were younger and used Fairytales repel line. It smells great, works fantastic and is non-toxic.
We hope this article has given you insight the next time you ask yourself, how do I kill my Kid’s Lice.