Nontoxic Head Lice Treatment

Nontoxic Head Lice Treatment
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Researchers pit the leading insecticide treatment against a coconut oil emulsion shampoo.

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The next game we’re going to play is called “Better than Nothing?” I’ll throw something up, and you’ll try to decide if what I have pictured is even worth trying.

First up? Head lice are nasty; really nasty. But so is covering our kids with insecticides, like permethrin, the standard treatment for head lice. So it’s no wonder there are all sorts of alternative treatments out there. But do they work?

One was finally put to the test: Paramide Plus coconut oil emulsion shampoo. Is it better than nothing, even though it may potentially delay more effective treatments? Better than nothing? Or, do you think, “If I have blood-sucking lice on my child’s head, I’m going for the big guns?”

Researchers went into 12 elementary schools, and after a week of insecticide treatments, 14% of the kids were cured. After a week of the coconut-derived shampoo, though, 61% were cured. Worked four times better, and no pesticide exposure.

To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by veganmontreal.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image thanks to Gilles San Martin via Flickr.

The next game we’re going to play is called “Better than Nothing?” I’ll throw something up, and you’ll try to decide if what I have pictured is even worth trying.

First up? Head lice are nasty; really nasty. But so is covering our kids with insecticides, like permethrin, the standard treatment for head lice. So it’s no wonder there are all sorts of alternative treatments out there. But do they work?

One was finally put to the test: Paramide Plus coconut oil emulsion shampoo. Is it better than nothing, even though it may potentially delay more effective treatments? Better than nothing? Or, do you think, “If I have blood-sucking lice on my child’s head, I’m going for the big guns?”

Researchers went into 12 elementary schools, and after a week of insecticide treatments, 14% of the kids were cured. After a week of the coconut-derived shampoo, though, 61% were cured. Worked four times better, and no pesticide exposure.

To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by veganmontreal.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image thanks to Gilles San Martin via Flickr.

Doctor's Note

Check out my other videos on alternative medicine

Also be sure to see my associated blog post: Adding FDA-Approved Viruses to Meat.

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14 responses to “Nontoxic Head Lice Treatment

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  1. As a school nurse I am interested in effective non-toxic head lice treatments. I googled for Paramide Plus and found you. I checked with the local pharmacist but he couldn’t find anything about it. Where else might I look to find this product? I did find a place where a parent used Suave coconut shampoo and conditioner with good results. I will check the label when I get off work to see if there is any coconut derivitives in it. That would be a cheap solution for my chronic head lice families who can’t afford all the treatments. Thanks for any info.




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  2. As a father of two young daughters in public schools, we have had several head lice infestations in my family. After much trial and error and literature review, (e.g. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10937452 we found that liberally soaking our hair in olive oil, wrapping our heads in saran wrap or a shower cap and then a towel and sleeping that way works perfectly. Even our 4 year old tolerated it well and we felt much better about this treatment than applying insecticides that clearly didn’t work anyway. Coconut oil might be easier because it is less ‘runny’, but I’m going to stick with what has worked several times for us.




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    1. Literally any conditioner or oil will work for the treatment of headlice. Just coat all hair and leave it for a few hours, then comb out the lice with a nit comb.




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  3. I tried the chemical approach, my kid’s scalp got irritated and the lice didn’t disappear. I tried tea tree oil ( Melaleuca Australiensis), 10 drops per tsp of shampoo ( about a quarter size amount in my palm), letting it sit 10 minutes on the child’s scalp. That worked perfectly and caused no irritation. Also, washing all bedding, clothes, hats in hot water and drying them in the dryer, freezing stuffed toys or washing them but air dry or Low Heat Dryer.




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  4. Hi Dr. Greger. Thanks for all your awesome videos. I met you last week on the Holistic Holiday at Sea cruise where your lecture on day 1 converted my (spine surgeon) friend and his wife to a plant based diet. Thank you for that! My question is regarding topical coconut oil use. I do not eat it, as my cholesterol level runs high despite years on a plant based diet. But, I use it liberally topically on my face and body as my favorite moisturizer. Have you seen any studies that address whether or not the saturated fat in coconut oil used topically enter the body to potentially increase cholesterol? Thank you!




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