Can lice survive flat iron for hair? Do hair straighteners kill nit eggs? In this article, we will be discussing the facts.
There’s no denying the fact that lice problems are among the most difficult pest problems to deal with. Head lice are most common with kids because they play around a lot with themselves.
With frequent head contact established, getting infested with head lice is almost inevitable.
READ: Can Hair Dye Kill Lice?
However, that isn’t what we’re focused on. Here, we’ll be finding out if the simple action of straightening your hair kills lice. A lot of people think it does, but does it really kill lice?
All you have to do is read along for all the details about hair straightening and lice extermination.
The Point of Hair Straightening
Whenever hair straightening is done in response to a lice problem, it’s aimed at applying high temperatures on hair. This helps kill nits as well as lice found on black or blonde hair. Of course, the nymphs aren’t spared.
Without a doubt, no lice would be able to survive the heat when exposed to such.
However, there’s a limit to which hair straightening can go. The scalp area is excluded as applying such heat on the scalp with lead to burns or injury.
Now, the problem is, lice mostly live closest to the scalp area for purposes of feeding and warmth. A hair straightener can only do so much in terms of killing lice.
Can Hair Straightening Kill Lice?
When exposed to heat above 40 degrees Celsius, lice are unable to survive.
Such heat will easily exterminate those lice which have ventured further out (for whatever reason) from the hair base. Notice that we mentioned the position along the hair shaft. Most lice will remain in areas closest to the scalp.
This fact significantly limits the efficacy of hair straightening as a heat treatment method for lice extermination.
We’ve stated earlier that this behavior is necessary to ensure they’re close to their food source (blood from the scalp). The warmth is also needed.
In a nutshell, although hair straightening will kill lice when their within range, the greater percentage of these parasites are out of reach. This creates a problem as the main objective isn’t achieved.
There Are Other Downsides to Hair Straightening
Not only is a hair straightening treatment for lice ineffective, but it also causes hair damage. This is mostly in the form of dryness as well as putting the hair follicles and shafts of your child’s scalp under stress.
With such side effects, hair straightening treatments for lice aren’t worth it.
Most hair straightening treatments for lice requires you to perform the procedure repeatedly until the lice problem improves. With little results obtained and the need for repeated treatments, this process isn’t worth the stress.
You’ll need to find something else that works.
The Closest thing to Hair Straightening that Works
Hair straightening will do little to kill all lice on your scalp.
Here, the natural response will be to find something that works. One strategy a bit similar to hair straightening is the use of a nit comb. These are meant to be used every two to three days to get rid of lice from the scalp and hair.
You’ll need to be patient when performing this procedure. Also, the use of a white-colored hair conditioner will be great in getting the job done. So, what role does the white-colored hair conditioner play?
It enhances visibility to lice and nits when using the nit comb.
Plus, the conditioner also slows down lice activity as they’re removed with the nit comb. Such combo treatment for head lice gives much more results than hair straightening.
Here, no heat is applied onto the hair which ensures its original structure or condition isn’t affected or damaged.
A Great Deal of Patience is Necessary
Although nit a nit comb and white-colored hair conditioner help get the results you seek, a great deal of patience is needed. How so? This is because you’re dealing with kids.
Kids are the most vulnerable to head lice infestation.
During the process of removal using a nit come, kids hardly stay still.
Kids are mostly restless and won’t stay still when you get the job done. This creates lots of distractions that could affect the treatment process.
Some people actually wait for their kids to be asleep before positioning them in readiness for this treatment process.
Treating with Nit Combs
It’s important to understand that you’re using the nit combs to get rid of lice, nymphs, and also nits attached to hair shafts. There needs to be a towel or other cloth upon which the kid lays their head (in a situation where they’re fast asleep while you treat).
The cloth or towel serves to hold the lice and nits dropping or being removed from the hair. With treatment completed, have your nit combs and any other brushes soaked in boiling water for about 5 to 10 minutes.
This is sufficient time for the heat to kill both eggs and lice. The towel should be machine washed using a hot cycle to kill off nits and lice.
Hair and Scalp Treatment isn’t done in Isolation
Whether you’re straightening your hair or applying other forms of scalp treatments, it’s important to ensure that treatment is comprehensive. In other words, such treatment should cover other areas apart from the scalp.
This includes bedding, couches used by lice-infested persons, and carpets laid upon.
Although lice that have fallen off from the scalp won’t last for more than 2 days outside their preferred location, anyone could be at risk of being affected.
When anyone lays their head on the same spot an infested person lays theirs, there’s a likelihood of getting lice.
You’ll need to do a great deal of vacuuming of areas such as your carpets and couches. Also, frequently wash pillowcases and bedsheets and avoid sharing personal items like combs and brushes.
This should continue until the situation improves.
Seek Medical Advice
Some medical advice will prove highly beneficial and effective in resolving lice infestation problems. The quicker the problem goes, the better. Effective treatments are recommended by a physician.
Hair straightening will kill lice, but that’s only when these parasites are found within the coverage area of a hair straightener.
In other words, a hair straightener won’t go all the way to the scalp area where most of the lice populations are.
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