frank - up in grand blanc wrote:Head Lice Now Resistant to Common Meds in 25 States"We have found 100 percent resistance among 104 lice populations out of 109 we tested"
The referenced article addresses how head lice have developed a genetic resistance to core of OTC louse defense: permethrin. One chemical has been used to purge the little bastards and over time bugs that are resistant have arisen while the susceptible ones have been Darwined out of the gene pool.
The unnerving part of this resistance is that the bug is so damn common. One of my kids came down with a case (miraculously it was contained to the one little girl) despite the fact that we're meticulously clean. What was funny about our daughter's case was that we had just returned home from a night out with another couple and were sitting in our living room when the little girl walks in and declares that she found a bug while brushing her hair. I about levitated out of my chair but the friends were cool: she's a teacher and without batting an eye dove in, did an inspection and concluded "yep, she's got 'em." A trick that I learned from my father and his unsavory work was to keep on hand an arsenal for dealing with whatever crap might inadvertently be brought home, so I dusted off the box of louse shampoo bought years earlier when we first started with kids, and in 30 minutes the entire household had been washed. Then it was on to the nit-picking. How flipping tedious and awful. The tot had very long hair, but mercifully she takes after the dark side of the family so the hair presented at least a little contrast for the tiny eggs which are literally glued to the individual hairs.
Bottom line: anyone with kids, anyone who flies, and anyone who isn't hermetically sealed all day probably has cause to be at least a little worried about the arrival of bad-assed little lice.
My granddaughter got them out in Colorado in 1st grade and, being of a certain generation, I told my daughter to go out, buy the strongest shampoo, strip all the beds and bleach everything and throw out all the stuffed animals. She, being of a certain other generation, didn't listen to me at all. She smeared olive oil all over the kid's heads (the younger one never got them, but it was a precaution), put a plastic bag over her hair and let it sit for a day. She then used the lice comb and hand pick method. She repeated this a few times and, voila, within a few days, they were gone. Apparently, even lice can't breath when drowning in olive oil inside a plastic bag. Myra looked greasy for a while, but neither one got them back. Also, they won't live on toys or sheets; they pass by direct head to head contact which I didn't know either.