WEST HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) – The pesky parasites have been around for thousands of years and over time strains of head lice have become super resistant to over the counter and prescription treatments.
But there’s a new way to kill them off and it’s FDA cleared.
They don’t jump. They don’t fly. They do crawl fast.
And one louse can jump start an outbreak of head lice.
“All you really need is one louse, a female louse. They just have to mate once and then they lay eggs for the rest of their life and they lay a few eggs a day on their head,” says Registered Nurse Melissa Parker with Lice Clinics of America in West Hartford.
It offers AirAlle, an FDA cleared medical device to kill off the annoying lice.
“Really what it is is controlled heated air. Our device delivers controlled heated in a specific pattern on the head. We start at the back of the head.”
She explains, “And what it does is it rapidly dehydrates the egg therefore killing them and it’s over 99% effective to kill the eggs. We don’t use chemicals. We don’t use insecticides. We don’t use harsh toxins that your put in your child’s head.”
It may appear to act like a vacuum but that’s not the case.
“Instead of actually sucking the lice or eggs up, it’s blowing out the controlled heated air to dehydrate the egg and the lice.”
The latest study shows Connecticut is one of 25 states where 100 percent of the tested lice were found to be resistant to over the counter medication.
Melissa says, “What can happen is they do cause an irritation. About 80 – 85% of people have an allergy to basically the saliva of the lice. So when people itch, that’s what they are talking about.”
The re-treat rate is less than one percent. The total treatment can cost up to 195 dollars and can take up to an hour and half to get it done. It is not covered by insurance.
Doctors do point out that traditional treatments may not appear to work because parents don’t always follow the recommended directions.
If you have questions– be sure to talk to your doctor.