All About Lice

Frequently Asked Questions

Take a deep breath. You have lots of company. Between 6 and 12 million children are infested with head lice in the United States each year, according to the FDA.

The Lice Aunties can eradicate your infestation. One visit and you’re done. No chemicals, fuss, or mess. Guaranteed.

What exactly is lice?

Head lice are parasites that can only survive by feeding on a human scalp. A head lice infestation has two parts: the live insects, which are small wingless bugs about the size of a sesame seed, and nits, (or eggs ) that are attached to the hair shaft. They require body heat for incubation. They are very tiny and oval shaped, and are hard to see. Nits take 5–7 days to hatch. A female louse needs to be fertilized just once and can then lay 4–8 eggs a day until she dies of natural causes at approximately 30 days.

the life cycle of head lice

How do I know if my family has lice?

The most common symptom is itching. Not everyone who has lice, however, itches. It can be difficult to see lice and nits, so just looking is not a sufficient check.

Will I be able to see the bugs or eggs?

Lice Size Compared to a Penny Most likely not. A visual check is not enough. The best way to know for sure if there is any infestation is to comb through with high quality nit comb or have a professional check. Both the bugs and eggs(nits) are very small. See the comparison to a penny.

How did my family get lice?

The primary way head lice transmits is when your head comes in direct contact with the head of an infested individual. Head-to-head contact doesn’t guarantee that the infestation will spread, but it gives lice the best opportunity to move from the hair of the infested individual to another person’s hair.

Do they fly or jump?

Head lice don't jump, swim or fly. They crawl. Without strands of hair to grab with the claws on their legs, they have trouble getting around at all. However, they can crawl pretty quickly along the hair, so if your hair comes in contact with an infested head, it doesn’t take much for a louse to hitch a ride on a strand of your hair and make its way to your scalp.

What about my house? Do I need to tear it apart?

Head lice need to feed several times per day and can only do so on the scalp. Lice are not curious about your home, furniture or carpeting. They can’t live off the human scalp for more than 24–48 hours—so don’t worry too much about the house. The dryer is your best bet. Anything you are concerned about can be put in the dryer on high heat for 30 minutes and that will eradicate anything.

I am so ashamed! I am embarrassed to let anyone know that we have lice.

Everyone can (and does) get head lice. Lice do not differentiate between rich and poor. Lice are non-denominational. Dirty hair or poor hygiene has nothing to do with contracting lice. (They may even prefer clean hair because it is easier to attach to hair with fewer oils in it). You should let others who have been in close physical contact with infested people in your family know about the lice. Remember, your family got it from someone and it might just be from the people you need to call! Lice, like the common cold, are part of the human condition. And there is no sense being embarrassed or blaming others for the situation. The most crucial thing is to eradicate it!

What about my pets?

Dogs and cats do not get or transmit human head lice.

Can I just use the over-the-counter treatment I bought at the pharmacy? Will I be done if I use that?

Traditional chemical lice treatments are pesticides and not 100% effective, especially against the nits (the eggs.). Increasingly, the bugs have built up a resistance to the chemical formulation of over-the-counter products. Vigilant combing over several days, with a professional-grade nit comb, is also needed to ensure the lice are gone for good.

How can Lice Aunties help?

When you visit Lice Aunties, we identify who does and does not have lice in your family. We will treat anyone who needs it with our non-toxic processes, and with good humor! You will be well taken care of and able to get back to your life, the same day. We take the stigma out of having lice and have created a friendly, supportive vibe in our Treatment Centers. We work 363 days per year and you can make an appointment by calling 617.901.0620. We will educate you on how to avoid future infestations and best of all, our work is guaranteed.