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What are lice?
Lice (lat. Pediculosis) is a problem caused by the presence of parasites on the human body – head lice (Pediculus capitis). Head lice live only on the hairy parts of the skin, where they feed on human blood. At the sting point, inflammation of the skin is produced, causing a severe itching sensation and, consequently, scratching. Adult specimens reach 2-3 mm and are whitish-brown in color.
The first sign of lice which should put you on the alert is simply itching. If your child is constantly scratching, carefully examine the hair and the scalp. The best method is to part the hair with your fingers, combing it every couple centimeters. Lice generally concentrate behind the ears and at the back of the head – this is where your inspection should begin. Look not only for adult insects but also for their eggs, or nits.
How to identify lice
Lice are very small (2-3 mm), usually whitish, beige or brown (but can change their color according to the color of the hair) and quickly move along a hair shaft. When in motion, they can be easily seen.
Eggs are white or pale yellow, about 1 mm long, and are very firmly attached to the roots of hair. They resemble dandruff, but cannot be easily peeled away.
4 basic signs of lice infestation:
Neglecting a case of head lice infestation can lead to enlargement of the lymph nodes around the head. In the event of bacterial complications, consult your doctor for advice.