Information from the Health Office

A reminder for our parents:

Each year there is renewed interest in head lice and children. Lincoln Public Schools has clear protocol and procedures for dealing with the reality of this issue.

Helpful information:

Head lice are very small insects that can attach to human scalps and can cause severe itching. They do not cause disease. Lice can be difficult to get rid of and are easily spread, but only if there is close head-to-head contact with another person. The American Academy of Pediatrics and the National Association of School Nurses do not recommend exclusion from school.  Research has proven this to be an ineffective way to control head lice.  There are many misconceptions about how lice are transmitted. 

Facts:

Anyone can get lice, regardless of cleanliness. Lice start out white and turn a light brown color as they feed on the blood of the scalp. They are about the size of a sesame seed, about 1/8-inch. Lice glue their tiny eggs, called nits, to hair about ¼-inch away from the scalp. It takes about a week for them to hatch. Nymphs are newly hatched lice and can lay eggs about seven days after hatching.  Lice are killed with special pesticide shampoo.  Nits are difficult to kill and must be physically removed from hair with a nit comb or individually by hand. Lice live approximately 30 days once they hatch and can lay up to 100 eggs in their short lifetime. Adult lice die within a day or two if they fall off a human head.  

How lice travel:

Lice can get onto your hair when you come in contact with an infested person’s hair or something their hair has touched, such as clothing, brushes, combs, hair accessories, hats, pillows, toys and furniture upholstery.  They do not jump or fly – they crawl.  Risk of transmission is low at school, but more likely to spread at home, child care or sleepovers. Head-to-head contact is the most likely way to transmit lice.

For more information:

Please contact the school nurse at your school for more information, or if you’d like your student’s head checked.