Head lice: The itchy and scratchy show

Just say the words head lice and you’ll have parents, teachers and pediatricians cringing. These little creatures, about the size of a sesame seed, mostly affect school-aged children between 2 and 12 years old. Lice also create unnecessary fear and panic.

As children return to school in the fall, our office starts getting calls from worried parents about lice and nits (lice eggs). In some cases, parents call us in tears and tell us that their son or daughter has been kicked out of school until all the lice and nits are gone. Not only do we have to work to get rid of the lice, but we have to fight to get the child back to class.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recently issued a report that provides good recommendations for dealing with lice.

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