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Head Lice

Cottage Street School Health Office Note: October, 2018

Dear Parents and Guardians,

This information is provided to you in the event that you have questions regarding head lice or you find out that your child or a classmate of your child has head lice. We take the matter of student privacy seriously. We will not release the names of students in any communications from the school. I’d like to take this opportunity to share with you some simple pointers on how to detect and prevent the spread of lice. Check your child daily for the next few weeks and on a regular basis thereafter. If your child has head lice please notify any parents of the children they may have had contact with in the past 2 weeks. The first sign of lice is constant scratching, so check your child’s head if they report this. A good resource is www.cdc.gov/parasites/lice/head/treatment.html. Or type in head lice treatment and a whole bunch of sites will come up on line.

Head lice are small bugs, only about 1/8 of an inch long. They are grayish-white with dark edges. While they cannot fly and do not jump, they move quickly. That’s why it’s difficult to find them in a child’s hair. Diagnosis of head lice is generally made when lice eggs (nits), which are fastened to the hair shaft, are clearly evident. Nits are teardrop in shape and also very small, only about 1/32 of an inch (about the size of a grain of sugar). They are “glued” to the hair and cannot be washed or brushed out like dandruff.

To help to protect your child from head lice and to help control the spread, please take the following precautions:

  • Do not allow your child to share his/her comb and brush.
  • Do not allow your child to share or try on hats.
  • Wash your child’s sheets often. You may even want to vacuum his/her mattress.
  • Do not allow your child to bring any stuffed toys to school or swap with friends.
  • Remind your child to avoid putting his/her head on the carpet or pillows at school.
  • Put long hair in braids, ponytails or barrettes.
  • Wash your child’s coat and hat today and as often as possible.
  • Check your child daily for signs of head lice.
  • Wash your child’s hair daily with regular shampoo and dry it with a hair dryer.

If you should find a case of head lice, or if you need assistance, please contact me in the health office at school.

781-784-1580 ext 1010

Thank you for your cooperation!