Lice are a common problem, especially in elementary schools. A number of members have expressed concern about repeated lice infestations. Particularly members have been concerned about the chemicals used to treat lice. According to the Fraser Health website, only the following non-chemical option is an effective treatment.

Wet Combing Method – Remove the Lice

Wet combing is based on the life cycle of lice. It focuses on removing the live lice and does not require removing nits from the head. Combing treatments are done every 3 – 4 days over a two week period – to break the life cycle of the lice by removing them before they are fully grown and able to spread or lay eggs.
This option is safe for infants and pregnant women. Re-infestation can occur – consult your local health unit if you need more options.

Steps to Follow

Do Remember
1. Wash hair with ordinary shampoo and rinse. 1. Note: on average, a wet combing session takes about ½ hour per person
2. Apply ½ cup of conditioner (any brand) all over head and scalp. Do not rinse out the conditioner. 2. Untangle hair with a regular wide toothed comb. Wet conditioner will immobilize the lice.
3. Comb sections of hair using a metal nit comb. Divide the hair into small sections and firmly draw the comb from the scalp to the end of the hair. After each stroke rinse the comb in a sink or bowl of warm water and wipe dry. Do the entire head making sure the head stays very wet. 3. Metal nit combs are available at your local pharmacy. If it tugs the hair it may be upside down.
4. Rinse hair. Leave the hair dripping wet. Repeat step 3 combing without conditioner until no lice are found. 4. Check the comb and your fingernails for lice (you don’t want to give them a ride back to your head).
5. Repeat steps 1 – 4 every 3 – 4 days for two weeks (For example, wet comb on day 1, day 5, day 9, day 13). 5. Use a wide tooth comb to untangle and then use the fine tooth metal nit comb again.
6. If you find any lice following treatment, this is a new infestation of lice and you will need to wet comb the hair for another two weeks. 6. This breaks the life cycle of the louse by removing the lice before they are fully grown and able to spread or lay eggs.