Untreated head lice

Much like any human parasite, it is important to treat head lice. Leaving them untreated can have serious consequences both for the carrier and for people they meet on a casual or more much closer basis.

Much like any human parasite, it is important to treat head lice. Leaving them untreated can have serious consequences both for the carrier and for people they meet on a casual or more much closer basis.

Untreated head lice – what happens?

head lice curly hair

Whilst many of your searches may tell you that head lice are a harmless inconvenience that are easily solved with a little head lice product treatment, this casual approach ignores the true impact and consequences of not dealing with them can have. Leaving a head lice infestation untreated or not sufficiently treated means that the infestation is unchecked and will continue to multiply. Head lice eggs, or nits, take 7 to 11 days to hatch, then the head lice take 9 to 12 days to become fully grown adults. At that stage they can then mate, and they lay their first eggs 24 hours after mating. The female, adult louse only needs to mate once and after that she lays up to 10 eggs a day for the 30 days of her lifetime, so she lays 300 eggs in total. Multiply that by many lice on the head and someone can have a heavy infestation quite quickly. This will simply continue if untreated and from there a severe to very serious infestation will occur.

Can untreated head lice cause hair loss?

Untreated head lice may degrade the scalp and affects it health and that of the hair. If the follicles become blocked, then hair loss may occur. It is hard to have well-conditioned hair if it is covered in head lice eggs, lice and bacteria. Hair also becomes very difficult to brush when it has an untreated head lice infestation, and brushing is important to distribute the natural excretions key to hair health.

A healthy head of hair which fends off hair loss is only maintained if you take care of your hair and your health. Leaving an untreated head lice infestation in your hair is not taking care of your hair or your health.

Do lice eventually die off?

Head lice eventually die off, but a head lice infestation does not. Head lice live up to 30 days and then they die, but in that time, they will have procreated and laid up to 300 eggs per female head louse. When mum or dad dies the family lives on and in turn mates, lays new eggs, those eggs hatch and a whole new generation is borne. This cycle occurs every 24 to 37 days, so roughly every month. And the numbers keep growing exponentially, meaning the infestation get bigger and bigger. It is foolish then to think the infestation will die off naturally – it is only going to get worse.

Can untreated head lice affect your health?

Not only will an untreated infestation become severe but the side effects of that are serious. Firstly, it will become very uncomfortable for the person who has it. They may itch uncontrollably. It will smell because of the build-up of bacteria on the lice, on their eggs and in and on their excretions, which will be deposited on the scalp. The persons sleep can be disrupted, sometimes severely. With the itching there is a risk of tearing the scalp and introducing infection. Blood disorders like anaemia are not unknown. The term ‘feeling lousy’ comes from having head lice, where the lice feeding off someone’s blood can run that person down and give them low-level, flu like symptoms. Extreme infestations that have gone untreated for a long time can result in toxic-shock syndrome.

And beyond the health implications there will be social consequences where people will avoid someone with an untreated, severe infestation. They will be socially shunned which can have deep and lasting psychological consequences for them.

Leaving a head lice infestation untreated, or even treating it in a casual way is simply not a wise thing to do.

Can untreated head lice cause hair loss?

Untreated head lice may degrade the scalp and affects it health and that of the hair. If the follicles become blocked, then hair loss may occur. It is hard to have well-conditioned hair if it is covered in head lice eggs, lice and bacteria. Hair also becomes very difficult to brush when it has an untreated head lice infestation, and brushing is important to distribute the natural excretions key to hair health.

A healthy head of hair which fends off hair loss is only maintained if you take care of your hair and your health. Leaving an untreated head lice infestation in your hair is not taking care of your hair or your health.

Do lice eventually die off?

Head lice eventually die off, but a head lice infestation does not. Head lice live up to 30 days and then they die, but in that time, they will have procreated and laid up to 300 eggs per female head louse. When mum or dad dies the family lives on and in turn mates, lays new eggs, those eggs hatch and a whole new generation is borne. This cycle occurs every 24 to 37 days, so roughly every month. And the numbers keep growing exponentially, meaning the infestation get bigger and bigger. It is foolish then to think the infestation will die off naturally – it is only going to get worse.

Can untreated head lice affect your health?

Not only will an untreated infestation become severe but the side effects of that are serious. Firstly, it will become very uncomfortable for the person who has it. They may itch uncontrollably. It will smell because of the build-up of bacteria on the lice, on their eggs and in and on their excretions, which will be deposited on the scalp. The persons sleep can be disrupted, sometimes severely. With the itching there is a risk of tearing the scalp and introducing infection. Blood disorders like anaemia are not unknown. The term ‘feeling lousy’ comes from having head lice, where the lice feeding off someone’s blood can run that person down and give them low-level, flu like symptoms. Extreme infestations that have gone untreated for a long time can result in toxic-shock syndrome.

And beyond the health implications there will be social consequences where people will avoid someone with an untreated, severe infestation. They will be socially shunned which can have deep and lasting psychological consequences for them.

Leaving a head lice infestation untreated, or even treating it in a casual way is simply not a wise thing to do.

Where can I get help with untreated head lice?

If anyone is struggling with untreated head lice or an infestation that just won’t go away and needs professional help then do contact us. Our network of nit and head lice removal clinics can sort it for you quickly, safely and effectively.

Whilst many of your searches may tell you that head lice are a harmless inconvenience that are easily solved with a little head lice product treatment, this casual approach ignores the true impact and consequences of not dealing with them can have. Leaving a head lice infestation untreated or not sufficiently treated means that the infestation is unchecked and will continue to multiply. Head lice eggs, or nits, take 7 to 11 days to hatch, then the head lice take 9 to 12 days to become fully grown adults. At that stage they can then mate, and they lay their first eggs 24 hours after mating. The female, adult louse only needs to mate once and after that she lays up to 10 eggs a day for the 30 days of her lifetime, so she lays 300 eggs in total. Multiply that by many lice on the head and someone can have a heavy infestation quite quickly. This will simply continue if untreated and from there a severe to very serious infestation will occur.

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