In a homeschooling house full of 7 kids & 3 guniea pigs....there is never a dull moment! A lot of people show genuine concern for us and want to know how we are doing, as the road we've left behind was not a pleasant one. So, here I am, to tell some of our stories...share some of our days...and open up a part of our world to you! Come join us on our journey so you won't miss the moments that take our breath away!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

L is for Lice, M is for Malathion, N is for Nix and O is for Ovide

I promised, the good, the bad and the ugly....Right now, we are dealing with the bad and it is very ugly!  We have had the displeasure of having lice for the last month or so.  It is the first time we have ever had such and encounter and we sure hope it is the last!  About a month ago Hawk complained of his head itching...sure enough, I saw something I had never seen before LICE and nits.  So, I ask everyone..."does anyone else's head itch"?  I had a few replies, but only found nits in Eagle's hair.  In a panic, I go to the local drugstore only to discover how expensive lice treatment is.  The pharmacist advises me that our insurance does cover these treatments and while she didn't want to offend me, she doubted I could afford to treat all of my 6 children.  With out a penny to spare and unable to afford to treat the boys, I hold my head down low I head to the counter with the $7 lice comb set and head home to research home remedies.  I decide to go with the shaving cream and vinegar idea.  The chemicals in the shaving cream are suppossed to smother them and the vinegar is suppossed to release the nits (eggs).  So, I strip everyone's beds and bag up Hawk and Eagle's pillows.  Wash everything in hot water, vacuum their beds and floors.  Then scrub a dub two boys in the tub with quite the spa treatment.  First, the comb treatment.  Then, shampoo and another comb treatment.  Followed by a head full of shaving cream.  Next, the lovely shower cap!  They each sat for 10 minutes....then another comb treatment.  Ahhh.....then came the vinegar!  From their reaction, it was very unpleasant.  Once again....the comb.  Next day....nothing! :)  I called the doctor, in hopes of getting a rx.  No such luck!  They thought that I had possibly gotten rid of them...afterall, I did everything right, and I wasn't seeing anything.   So....we wait.  I check them everyday but still continue to wash sheets, blankets, etc. EVERYDAY!!!  Three days later, just in case...they get the spa treatment repeated!  At some point, I did find nits in EMU's he was added to the spa treatment regimen and he didn't like it either.  Again, we wait....oh, and the laundry....UGGHHH, so much laundry!  Then.....Lice, only a few, but nonetheless...Lice!  Another call to the doctor begging for a rx.  Only Eagle gets the rx because he's the only one with anything visible.  Treatment and continue with laundry (hats, gloves, coats, sheets, was quite ridiculous) and vacuum.  Ahhh....and at last, they seem to be gone.  More than a week, almost two goes by and nothing!  Whew, that wasn't too bad :)

Emu has a check up for an ongoing ear problem.  No big deal, easy appointment....right!  Seriously, nothing goes easy for us!  As I'm sitting there talking to the nurse, telling her we are simply there for a re-check on his problem ear.  I begin to tell her "I think we finally got......" and I literally stop mid sentence!  "rid of the lice" was not how I finished that sentence!  I took a closer look at the "bug" I saw in his hair.  I was a little confused, because this one was dark, almost black...unlike the other Lice I had seen.  I ask "is that just a bug, or is that Lice"?  She instructs me to wait for the doctor.  Great, I'll just sit here and leave this bug in my son's hair, no big deal.  Uggh!!!  So, the doctor comes in and I say, "I was just telling the nurse that we finally got rid of the Lice, but, is that lice in his hair"?  At a first glance, she herself wasn't sure.  I say "it just looks darker than the others, the other ones didn't look like that".  She agrees, it does look dark, but....upon a closer look, yes, it was Lice.  She spent about 15 minutes looking through his hair.  Neither one of us saw anything else.  Since nits can literally be microscopic in size, she thought we should treat him anyways.  Frustrated, I went to the pharmacy to get his rx and decided to get Eagle's again too!  I come home and search through everyone's hair and both Hawk and Eagle had a few active bugs in their hair.  So, I treat all three of them with the rx.  Whew...again they seem gone and this time they should be, as the rx kills louse and nits!  Relieved, I do one last go around on the vacuuming and laundry!  Four or five days pass....UGGHHH!  Seriously are these things ever going to be gone! 

I refill everyone's rx and treat again!  This time after shampooing and treating, I comb again after and was STILL getting live louse!  I call the doctor the next day and they couldn't believe that I combed live louse out AFTER treating.  That's just the way our luck goes!  So, now they prescribe Ovide....but warn, that it is very strong and irritating to the scalp.  My poor much pesticide can you put on a child :(  The pharmacy didn't keep this in stock, so we had to wait another day for it to come in.  I resist the temptation to shave them all bald, however, they all recieved a very short cut!  Anxiously, I am ready to treat them all before bed...only to find out this stuff has to sit on their head for 8-12 hours.  So, today was their lucky day!  This stuff smells like a mix between rubbing alcohol and gasoline.  It too, is extremely flamable, so it will be an interesting day!  They are all complaining off and on of their head burning and I know what this stuff did to my hands in the short amount of time it took me to put it on them.  I feel so bad for them and can't imagine how their heads are going to feel by the time this is all over with.  Here's hoping this stuff works!!!!  It's been almost 3 months :o

Everything in life is a lesson and through all of this....we have learned a lot about Lice and their life cycle!
  • Lice need human blood to survive...if they fall off of your head, they can only live for 24-48 hours
  • Nits are eggs and they can be so tiny that you need a microscope to see them
  • It takes about 1-2 weeks for the nits to hatch
  • One louse can lay up to 100 nits
  • Your entire house can not become infested
  • Pets can not get lice
  • Lice have been resistant to the medications and treatments we have tried
  • L is for lice
  • M is for Malathion
  • N is for Nix
  • O is for Ovide
As always, even through times like this...we have learned to count our blessings!  Ovide came with a price tag of $179.39 for each bottle and we got three and we are also so thankful that the boys are the only ones who have gotten it!!!!!

1 comment:

  1. Ouch poor them. I sure hope they get rid of them. When I was 10, I baby sat this little girl. We didn't know what bugs were, not even my mom. I had hair a little past my butt, like mid thighs. So while watching this girl, she was prone to lice, which we didn't know, her mom was an unfit mom, though, it was expected. So I got lice from her, I was soo itchy, my mom found out, them learned what it was, cut off ALL my hair like as in shortest boy cut possible amost shaven. I could no longer watch that little girl anymore, she was a good girl too, but not her mom. Tha is how I learned of lice, they hide in hair, need human blood, and jump from human to human host.