The Present Treatments for Head Lice
Are Toxic and Harmful to Your Health
Head lice infestations are usually “medically” treated with insecticidal (POISON) lotions, shampoos, or cream rinses.
These pediculicide POISONS should NEVER be used on children under two; near broken skin, eyes, or mucous membranes; in the bathtub or shower; by those with allergies, asthma, epilepsy, or certain other medical conditions.
Itching may not subside for several days following a POISON treatment. All U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) registered non-prescription pediculicide POISONS contain pyrethroids. Insecticidal pyrethrins (0.33%) (RID®, A-200) are extracts from chrysanthemum flowers. Permethrin (1%) (Nix®) is a more stable synthetic pyrethrin. Pyrethroid pediculicide POISONS also usually contain 4 percent piperonyl butoxide. Pyrethroids are applied for a specified length of time (usually ten minutes) and then thoroughly rinsed out. The hair should not be washed for one or two days after treatment. Cream rinses, conditioners, hair sprays, mousse, gels, mayonnaise and/or vinegar should not be used before treatment or within one week after treatment since these products can reduce pediculicide (POISON) effectiveness. Lice Busters ® is registered with the FDA but is not a POISON!
Risky to Use
Prescription insecticide POISONS are used when other lice treatments fail or cannot be used. The following are prescription insecticide POISONS, which carry certain risks:
Malathion (0.5% in Ovide®), a neurotoxic organophosphate, was withdrawn from the U.S. market due to an increase in malathion-resistant lice. It was reintroduced in 1999. It is foul-smelling and flammable. Sometimes infested clothing is treated with a 1 percent Malathion powder – use food-grade diatomaceous earth.
Lindane (1% or higher) (Kwell®), an organochloride neurotoxin, can induce seizures and death in susceptible people, even when used according to the directions. In 2003, the FDA required new labeling and a reduction in bottle size.
Ivermectin (Stromectol®), an oral treatment for intestinal parasites, may be effective against head lice but as of 2004 had not been approved for that use by the FDA.
Experts disagree about the effectiveness and/or safety of pediculicide POISONS. Pediculicide POISONS do not kill nits, so proper and thorough nit removal and a second application of POISON in seven to 10 days are normally required. During the 1990s, as schools began requiring children to be lice- and nit-free, the use of pyrethroids rose significantly and the FDA began receiving many reports of their ineffectiveness. Pediculicides can be very toxic/poisonous especially if they are used improperly or too frequently and overuse can obviously lead to the proliferation of chemically resistant lice. Pediculicide residue may remain on the hair for several weeks and can cause skin or eye irritations.
Super Lice - Resistant to Poisons
Head lice infestations are scary enough as-is, but new research has discovered there NOW is a strain of mutant lice that is basically totally resistant to over-the-counter treatments — and they are found in at least 25 U.S. states. Dr. Kyong Sup Yoon, PhD, an assistant professor at Southern Illinois University, presented his findings at the American Chemical Society’s National Meeting & Exposition. Yoon and his team collected lice samples from a large number of populations across 30 states in the U.S.
They discovered that 104 out of 109 lice populations had high levels of gene mutations, which make them resistant to pyrethroids. Pyrethroids are a group of common insecticide POISONS that includes permethrin, the active ingredient in the most common head lice treatment products sold at drug stores. That means if you or your child contract head lice, there is a very good chance that the widely available treatments will NO LONGER get rid of the now resistant or mutant lice.
The tiny, wingless critters that crawl quickly from head to head have developed genetic mutations that fend off pyrethroids, the pesticides (POISONS) that are the active ingredients in over-the-counter shampoos and rinses like Rid® and Nix®. “If you use a lot, you can still kill the insects, but the problem is, they tend to develop additional resistance mechanisms,” said Dr. Kyong Yoon, an assistant professor in the biological sciences department at Southern Illinois University in Edwardsville, who was to present new research at a meeting of the American Chemical Society.
That’s a real problem for parents and kids in the United States, where an estimated 6 million to 12 million cases of lice occur each year among children ages 3 to 11, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Head lice are now nearly as common as the common cold in elementary schools, experts say, and the arsenal of weapons to treat them is becoming weaker. The tough new lice. It’s a trend that’s been shaping up for more than 15 years, when Dr. Yoon and colleagues first wondered about a growing resurgence of what’s formally known as pediculosis in the United States.
Back then, Dr. Yoon began testing the pests for three genetic mutations known as kdr, or knock-down-resistance, changes originally found in house flies that developed resistance to the insecticides in the late 1970s. His early work found that many of the lice did have the kdr mutations, which make them essentially immune to pyrethroids. Those bugs, dubbed “super lice” in some early news reports, drew dire predictions that it would soon be impossible to kill the insects with existing treatments. That situation, Dr. Yoon said, may now be coming true.
On 8/25/15 the Grand Rapids Press quoted Dr. Kyong-Sup Yoon, an author of the study, who advised Michigan parents to skip over-the-counter treatments and go directly to their pediatrician for a prescription for treatment that does not rely on Permethrin. Even in Frankenmuth, where researchers found the only population of lice still vulnerable to the chemical, it’s just a matter of time until it stops working, Dr. Yoon said. Dr. Yoon has clearly said that All Permethrin head lice treatments are NOW useless! (In addition to being dangerous to you and/or your child!) - Note: Both pyrethrin and piperonyl butoxide are now considered to be carcinogenic.
Several Health Departments currently recommend Lice Busters® to safely and effectively remove both lice and nits!