14 Facts About Lice ☆ How To Treat

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This is not what I normally like to write about, but I believe that some parents might benefit from the information. I just went through the lice treatment on my child again, so it gave me a motivation to write about this now.

What do you do when your child comes home with lice when living overseas? Since I have never seen lice till last year, it came as a shock at first when I found nits in my child’s head. I had goose bumps running through my arms and neck when I saw them. Luckily there are pharmacies in every corner in Mumbai, India and treatment products for lice is readily available. I hear it’s more emotionally damaging than anything to have lice, but the good news is that you can treat lice and you know that it will go away quickly if you treat it properly.

I’m not a doctor, so please consider this post as two cents from a mom who went through a head lice treatment on her children. Please find other websites such as American Academy of Dermatology for professional advise.

I have used these two products by Mediker in the photos on the top and bottom of this post for my children in India. Apparently there are different products for kids and adults. I got referral for the Indian brand Perlice, but when I went to a pharmacy in Mumbai to buy it, I was told by the local pharmacist that it was for adults and not recommended for the use on children. My husband supported the products that came recommended, but my mother instinct told me no. I did not want any chemical prescribed for adults on my child’s head because it will enter the body through pores. The Indian pharmacist recommended me this Mediker shampoo with natural ingredients, so I bought it. However, I was not successful (partly my fault). I went back to the pharmacy and asked for other recommendations and then I was recommended to use the oil version. I believe I did not do a good job the first time with the shampoo. I think that both products are good, but I think the oil is a bit more powerful and thus more effective. I would use the shampoo first and if the shampoo did not work, I would try the oil.

Here are 14 facts about lice that I learned. I find them helpful to know when treating lice and make kids understand them so that there is no hurtful words would be said to children who have head lice.

1. Lice can survive in the water for several hours (some say they can survive for a day). (I wish humans can do that.)
2. Lice hold onto human hair tightly when under water.
3. How lice spread is when an uninfected head touches the hair, hat, bedding or whatever that is hosting the live lice, they could crawl up and move to the head.
4. Lice do not jump or fly.
5. It has nothing to do with hygiene. (Point 2)
6. Lice can survive up to 2 days without a food source (away from the human scalp = blood). Usually they die after 3 days without eating.
7. Live lice die at the temperature of 40 degree Celsius (104 degree Fahrenheit) after 10 minutes.
8. Nits die at the temperature of 60 degree Celsius (140 degree Fahrenheit) after 10 minutes.
9. Nits are often found on the sides of the head behind the ears.
10. Nits are usually found close to the scalp (I found them about 1 cm away from the scalp).
11. Nits take about 7 days to hatch.
12. Nymphs (baby lice) mature after about 7 days.
13. Female lice can lay up to 8 nits per day! (Insane!! You can imagine how fast they can multiply.)
14. Lice move fast and they are good at hiding. (They are sneaky!)

(Some information via Q&A on the Center for Disease Control & Prevention home page, CDC Head Lice Biology, Kids Health, あたまじらみ.com, しらみガイド)

I would like to provide a little more detailed instructions for how I treated lice on my child’s head. You can see a video of how to treat lice on American Academy Dermatology site if you prefer a visual instructions.

Shampoo

What you need: Mediker Shampoo, Special Comb (You can buy it at any pharmacy in India)

You can find the instruction on the bottle, but the instruction on the bottle is very simple. I realized I need more step by step instructions.

1. Wet the child’s head with warm water just like you do so for a regular hair wash.
2. Apply the Medikar shampoo (anti-lice shampoo) generously and lather up well.
3. Use fingers to gently massage the lather into the hair close to the scalp (make sure there is no patches that did not get any lather. Lice can go hide in those spots. Yes, they are smarter than you think.)
4. Let the Medikar shampoo/anti-lice shampoo sit on the head for a few minutes for better effect.
5. Rinse well.
6. Comb the hair with the special comb for lice treatment. Each time you comb, dip the comb into a tub of hot water to release the lice. (I bought a comb from a pharmacy as the shampoo did not come with one.)
7. Repeat the process 7 days later. It is important to follow up.

After I combed the hair, I searched for nits and removed them with my fingers by sliding them on the hair between my nail and finger. You can remove lice with a comb, but I found it hard to remove nits with it. You do not have to do this process, but I felt better if I searched for nits and removed them one by one with my fingers. After you remove nits, you have to squeeze them with your nail. Live lice and nits that have not hatched would make a little noise when you press them against a hard surface. With two of my kids, both times, I found a live female louse crawling the day after I treated their head with the shampoo. For some reason I could not find them right after I treated their head when their hair was still wet. Female adult lice must have a very strong survival instinct. After killing the big cause, the female louse, then the problem went away in our cases.

You also have to either wash all the bedding, towels, pillow cases, stuff toys, hats and any fabric that the child’s head has touched. If you can’t wash some items, then you have to keep them in a plastic bag for a week or so. Putting them in a dryer would work as well. I find this process much more painful and tiring than treating the head. The beauty of living in a country like India where one can afford a help is that you have someone to help you with cleaning to exterminate lice from items. I have spend some time cleaning some beddings and pillow cases myself at night as I did not want to wait till the next day.

Oil Treatment

What you need: Mediker Oil, Comb, Shower Cap

There is a simple instruction on the bottle as well. I recommend this treatment!

1. Apply the Mediker anti-lice oil thoroughly on the head.
2. I made sure the oil is evenly spread out on the scalp and hair by gently massaging the oil into the hair especially the area close to the skin. Make sure there is no patches where the oil did not get to. You don’t want to allow lice to hide in those untreated areas. They might have a small brain, but they are smart (smarter than you think!)!
3. Put a shower cap (try to remove air between the shower cap and the hair) or wrap saran wrap on the head. This way you can suffocate the lice.
4. Have your child sit with the oil in the hair with a shower cap for an hour. (The instruction says leave the oil for an hour.)
5. Comb the hair with the special comb. After each time, dip the comb into a tub of hot water to release any lice.
6. Rinse the oil.
7. Comb the hair again with the comb.
8. Repeat the process 7 days later.

I find this method more effective.

I just wanted to share my experience so that I can help other expat parents out there with the same issue. Once you get a grip of treatment, it’s actually not that bad. I don’t mind sitting with my child under a lamp and go through the hair section by section like some monkeys do.

At the end of the day, you know that you can treat lice. It’s not a disease. It’s treatable. There are worse things out there.

I hope my post is helpful!

mediker lice treatment for kids in India

This was written voluntarily and all the products were purchased.

Yilan Taiwan 4 ☆ Fan Ge Tian Weng ☆ Famous Roast Chicken in Yilan

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When we went to Taipei to visit our friends, they organized a two-day trip to Yilan. The main activity there for us was the National Center For Traditional Arts, but there are other things you can do. For example, we went to a Spring Onion Farm. If you ever travel to Taipei and would like to see outside of the city, I highly recommend Yilan. You can make a day trip to Yilan from Taipei because it’s only an hour train ride from the central Taipei, but we stayed one night at Forte Dong-Shan Villa which was wonderful and easy with young children. For dinner we went to Fan Ge Tian Weng (番割田甕缸雞 in Chinese), which is very popular for roasted chicken in Yilan.

The dining at Fan Ge Tian Weng was really fun and delicious. It is famous for the roasted chicken, but there are also many delicious vegetarian options at Fan Ge Tian Weng restaurant, so even for vegetarians there are dishes to enjoy the dining experience at Fan Ge Tian Weng. We ordered the signature roasted chicken. The customers are given a pair of gloves to pull the meat apart which makes this dining experience more special and entertaining. We enjoyed every single dish and I think we all licked our plates.

I usually don’t care for the taste of beer, but I had the Taiwanese grape beer and I quite liked it! It was kind of sweet and mild. It was a great night and we went back to Forte Dong-Shan Villa with a full stomach just like the night of Thanksgiving.

台湾に住む友人たちを訪ねて行った時、台湾から1時間程の所にある宜欄という街にある国立伝統工芸センターを見るための1泊2日間の旅行を計画してくれました。日帰りも可能な距離なのですが、小さい子供も居たこと、また国立伝統工芸センター以外にもすることがある宜欄をゆっくり見れる様一泊することになりました。一泊したお陰でリラックスでき、とても有意義な時間を過ごせました。台湾に行かれることがありましたら、宜欄への小旅行をお勧めします。私たちは、国立伝統工芸センターの敷地内にあるホテル、フォルテ・ドンシャン・ビラに滞在し、夕食は、壷でローストされるローストチキンで有名なレストラン、番割田甕缸雞(ファン・ゲ・ティアン・ウェン)へ行きました。

番割田甕缸雞の野菜のお料理もとっても美味しかったので、菜食主義者の方でも楽しめるレストランだと思います。
私たちは、このレストランのご自慢のローストチキンを注文しました。このレストランでは、ホールチキンがテーブルへ運ばれる時に、手袋も渡されます。お客様が自分で手袋を付けて鶏の肉をバラにします。それがまた面白かったです。鶏料理を始め、全部とても美味しかったです。

私はビールは口に合わないため好んで飲まないのですが、台湾のぶどうビールはとても美味しいと思いました。ビール独特の苦みは無く、ほのかな甘みがあって飲みやすかったです。アメリカの感謝祭の夕食後の時のように、たらふく食べ、満腹のお腹を抱えてフォルテ・ドンシャン・ビラへと戻りました。

Fan Ge Tian Weng Roast Chicken in Jar Yilan

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Fan Ge Tian Weng | 番割田甕缸雞

No. 191, Sec. 3, Wujie Rd., Wujie Township, Yilan, Taiwan
TEL: 03-960-6666

Yilan Taiwan Part 3 ☆ Spring Onion Farm

Yilan Spring Onion Country-2

On the same day we traveled to Yilan, Taiwan from Taipei on a fast train, our friends, Josh and Kara, took us to a spring onion farm because Yilan is famous for spring onions. (Please give me a few more days to check the name of this place.) Kids got to wear boots and go pick spring onions. As you can see in the photos below, after picking some spring onions, they washed them and then made spring onion/scallion pancakes. Those pancakes were delicious!!! The crispy outside layer has a lovely texture and an accent flavor of scallions spreads in your mouth with each bite. We all scarfed them down.

My son who was 2 at the time was too young to go. Thus, I stayed behind with him. Can you tell he was envious? The spring onion picking only took about 10 minutes. It was really quick.

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I’ve got a comedian in my family.

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The main reason for our visit to Yilan was the National Center For Traditional Arts. Please click here for the post on the National Center For Traditional Arts. As for our accommodation, we stayed at Forte Dong-shan Villa. I recommend Forte Dong-shan Villa if you would like to visit the National Center For Traditional Arts with young children. Please click here for the post about our hotel in Yilan.