To check for head lice and nits:
• Look closely through the hair and scalp for nits and lice with a bright light and fine-toothed NIT comb.
• Nits are usually noticed first and are easier to see. They are glued to the hair shaft, behind the ears and at the back of the neck. Unlike dandruff they cannot be brushed off.
• Applying hair conditioner to the hair, combing with a fine tooth lice comb and wiping the comb onto a paper towel or tissue is an easy and effective way to find head lice and nits.
Nits are the live eggs of the head lice. They look like small, whitish specks about the size of a pinhead and are glued to the hair shaft. Nits are usually found on the hair shaft at the nape of the neck, under the fringe and behind the ears as they need the warmth and moisture from the scalp to hatch. Nits hatch within 7 to 10 days as young lice (nymphs) and mature into adult lice in about 7 days. The key to beating nits is regular checking, every week!
KNOW YOUR ENEMY!
Head lice are small, wingless insects that live in hair where they breed and feed on blood from the scalp. They grow to about 3.5mm long (the size of a sesame seed or pin head); have 6 legs and range from tan to greyish white in colour. They live up to 30 days and cannot survive for more than 1-2 days away from the human scalp.
OUR SCHOOL RESPONSE
If we are aware that your child has had a persistent infestation of head lice, we will write to offer specific support to help you to deal effectively with the problem.
Our school nurse is able to offer direct guidance and training in these strategies if you find them difficult to implement on your own.
As a school we are committed to controlling and limiting the spread of head lice and are very keen to help you develop an effective anti-head lice routine.
The key to a successful anti-head lice strategy is regular weekly checks for the signs of lice (especially their eggs, or 'Nits'), and a quick response if any signs are found.
Tying long hair back helps to prevent the spread of head lice and we encourage all children with long hair to tie it back.
We give weekly reminders about the importance of regular hair checks to the whole school during assemblies. This helps to make the children aware of the part they can play in helping to keep the school head lice free!