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Head lice (pediculosis) are tiny insects that live on the scalp and feed on blood. These parasites can take up residence on anyone’s head, but are particularly fond of children in schools and daycare centres, since this is where they can easily spread.
Here are some signs and symptoms that could mean your child has lice:
You can also have head lice without having any symptoms!
The best way to know if someone has head lice is to do a visual examination of the scalp. If one child has lice, your entire family is at risk of having them, too. You will need to do a lice check on every member of the household and treat everyone at the same time. But only family members with visible nits and lice should be treated with the head lice product (pediculicide).
There are no benefits whatsoever to treating someone who does not have lice in an attempt to prevent the problem. On the contrary, this can contribute to a very common problem: the resistance of head lice to available treatment options!
Here are the steps of a thorough scalp examination:
Examine your child’s scalp in the following situations:
Good to know!
During the school year, it’s a good idea to check your children for lice at least once a week. Back-to-school time is particularly favourable for head lice infestations.
The first thing to do when someone has lice is head to the pharmacy. Head lice treatments are available without a prescription and are generally kept behind the prescription counter. You will need to ask a member of the pharmacy team for them.
Your family pharmacist can help you choose the product best suited to your situation. The information about the treatment will be recorded in the prescription file of the person being treated.
Here are some tips on using the product safely and effectively so you can eliminate the head lice the first time around:
To get rid of lice for good, you will also need to eliminate them from your surroundings. Health authorities recommend these measures:
It’s also essential to:
Found lice on one of your family members? You need to begin treatment as soon as possible. You can always ask your family pharmacists for advice on treatment options. They can also prescribe* medications for certain minor health problems when no diagnosis is required, as is the case with head lice. A consultation will be required so the pharmacist can make sure you meet the prescribing criteria.
To avail yourself of this service, you may need to book an appointment with your family pharmacist. Ask a member of the pharmacy team for more details. Some Uniprix-affiliated pharmacies also offer an online appointment booking service. To locate the store nearest you providing this service, click here.
*Certain conditions must be respected. Fees may apply. Ask a member of the pharmacy team for more information. Pharmacists alone are responsible for the practice of pharmacy. They offer related services only on behalf of pharmacist-owners
[UNIPRIX] - The information contained herein is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended to provide complete information on the subject matter or to replace the advice of a health professional. This information does not constitute medical consultation, diagnosis or opinion and should not be interpreted as such. Please consult your health care provider if you have any questions about your health, medications or treatment.