Ayurvedic treatment for Head lice

Head lice

Know More on Hair Health

  • Definition
  • Causes
  • Symptoms
  • Diagnosis
  • Management
  • FAQS
  • References

Definition

Head lice Ayurvedic treatment

WHAT IS HEAD LICE?

Head lice are tiny insects that live in hair. They are very common amongst school children between the ages of 4-11 years. They are parasites which get the nourishment from human blood. Adult female lice lay 3-5 eggs per day which are glued to hair shaft that it is difficult to remove them. The eggs hatch in 7-10 days and go on to lay more eggs on the scalp. Head lice cause number of problems like itching, redness may also make the person prone to other infections. If not treated they can live in the hair for long time making it frustrating and irritating to deal.1

According to Ayurveda hair is a byproduct of bone formation; the tissue which is responsible for bone formation is also responsible for the hair growth. Good hair health is a symbol of balanced doshas in the body. Any imbalance in the doshas lead to different diseases of the hair.2

Causes

Head lice

HEAD LICE CAUSES

The most common way of getting head lice is head-to-head contact. They cannot jump or fly hence move from one person to another by crawling. Sharing of objects infested with lice such as hair accessories, brushes, combs, hats, scarves, coats, and towel. Using a bed, couch, pillow, rug or chair infested with lice is another way for getting head lice.

Symptoms

Head lice

HEAD LICE SYMPTOMS

Signs and symptoms of head lice include:

  • Itchy scalp
  • Crawling sensation on scalp or hair
  • Scratching
  • Swollen lymph nodes in the neck
  • Pink eye
  • Finding lice eggs
  • Bugs crawling on the skin, hair or clothing

Diagnosis

Head lice

HEAD LICE DIAGNOSIS

Finding live lice by combing with a special fine-toothed comb.

Management

Head lice

HEAD LICE AYURVEDIC TREATMENT

Ayurveda explains that good hair is a sign of good, balanced state of tridosha and imbalance in the tridosha can lead to hair diseases. The management is balancing the vitiated dosha and strengthen the dhatus by appropriate diet, lifestyle and herbs.

Diet Recommendations (Aahar)

  • Include foods rich in minerals and vitamins.
  • Include foods rich in proteins to prevents breaking of hair due to lice.

Lifestyle changes (Vihar)

  • Lemon juice and almonds are effective home remedies for killing head lice.
  • Massaging hair with olive oil helps in head lice treatment.
  • Applying alcohol over the hair helps in eliminating lice.
  • Neem paste and tulsi leaves application on hair gets rid of head lice
  • Avoid using personal items of the person suffering from head lice.
  • Prevent the scalp from drying, it may lead to head lice and dandruff.
  • Always keep scalp clean and apply coconut hair oil.

FAQS

Head lice
  1. My daughter is 8 months old. There are white patches on her scalp which are also flaky. Can you suggest any ayurvedic remedy for the same?

Your child may be at risk of cradle cap. Cradle cap are the oily or crusty scaly patches on a baby's scalp. It isn't itchy or painful; but leads to formation of thick white or yellow scales that difficult to remove. Cradle cap is a self-limiting disease and usually goes on its own. Ayurvedic management of the disease recommends balanced diet and lifestyle for mother and child along with use of herbs to strengthen the hair health. 

Aahar recommendations:

  • Breastfeeding mother should avoid consuming foods prepared out of maida, curds, and oily foods.
  • Eating healthy food during pregnancy helps prevent cradle cap. Include fennel seeds, cumins, garlic, turmeric, ginger and pepper in the diet.

Vihar recommendations:

  • To loosen the scales formed on the scalp, massage with baby oil, olive oil or petroleum jelly
  • Gently massage the affected area and brush off the loosened scales, later washing them away with a shampoo.
  • A paste of sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) on the scalp for ten minutes helps in removing the scales.
  1. How do I know if my hair is damaged?

You may be at risk of damaged hair if your hair appears Brittle, Dry, Lifeless or Shineless.

  1. What are the ayurvedic remedies for dandruff?

Aahar recommendations:

  • Eat fruits such as mango, pomegranate, lemon, coconut
  • Include vegetables such as drumstick
  • Use ghee in moderate amount
  • Have food rich in vitamin E (almond, pine nuts, peanuts, spinach, flaxseed oil, soyabean) and omega 3 fatty acids (flax seed, walnut, sardines, salmon, soyabean, tofu, shrimp) for good scalp health
  • Avoid wrong food combinations (for e.g. fish with milk)
  • Avoid drinking cold water

Vihar recommendations:

  • Massage scalp with sesame oil
  • Applying paste of neem leaves
  • Apply green gram powder
  • Massage aloe vera on your scalp may be beneficial.
  • Practice asanas like Shirshasana and suryanamaskara. It enhances blood circulation to head and brain nourishing the scalp with necessary nutrients
  • Practice meditation, as it helps in controlling stress and anxiety
  • Mix of lemon juice + coconut oil may be beneficial to control dandruff
  • Mixture of coconut oil + camphor may be beneficial to control dandruff
  • Fine paste of methi seeds can be applied on scalp for controlling dandruff
  1. Does oil massage really benefit dry hair?

Warm oil massage to scalp and hair is an effective way to nourish the scalp and hair.

  1. My hair is often frizzy and unmanageable, what could be the possible reason for it?

Frizzy hair may be due to:

  • Not eating a balanced diet and drinking enough water.
  • Not enough oil production on scalp.
  • Not choosing right type of hair product.
  • Certain medications.
  • Chemical hair treatments.
  1. I am suffering from hair thinning leading to low hair density. What are the foods that I should be consuming?
  • Increase intake of healthy nutritious balance diet
  • Protein rich foods will help prevent hair fall and baldness. Include foods such as eggs, beans fish, low fat cheese, yeast, soybean, and yoghurt which will help in proper hair growth.
  • Increased intake of iron as it is essential for hemoglobin and blood formation. Increase the quantity of raisins, dates, green vegetables, etc.
  • Avoid foods which may lead to thinning of hair like spicy, sugary foods, fried foods, caffeine, carbonated drinks, etc.
  • A lettuce and spinach juice helps in encouraging hair growth.
  1. What are the ayurcedic remedies to treat head lice?
  • Lemon juice and almonds are effective home remedies for killing head lice.
  • Massaging hair with olive oil helps in head lice treatment.
  • Applying alcohol over the hair helps in eliminating lice.
  • Neem paste and tulsi leaves application on hair gets rid of head lice
  • Avoid using personal items of the person suffering from head lice.
  • Prevent the scalp from drying, it may lead to head lice and dandruff.
  • Always keep scalp clean and apply coconut hair oil.
  1. I have oily scalp and hair. Is it advisable to use conditioner after hair wash?

Leave shampoo on hair for at least 5 minutes before rinsing. Use conditioner only on the ends of the hair. Avoid putting it directly on the scalp.

  1. What are the causes for premature greying of hair?

The causes of premature greying of hair are:

  • Heredity
  • Medical Conditions like vitiligo, pernicious anemia and thyroid disorders
  • Medications like methotrexate, lithium
  • Smoking
  1. What practices for hair care are to be followed to prevent split ends?
  • Avoid brushing hair frequently
  • Use less heat on hair
  • Use conditioner regularly
  • Protect the hair from extreme hot or cold weather
  • Regularly get haircuts and trims.

 

 

 

 

 

References

Head lice
  1. Head lice and nits. NHS 2016. Accessed on 18th Sept 2016; downloaded from: http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/head-lice/pages/introduction.aspx
  2. Ayurvedic treatment for hair loss/hair fall. Accessed on 18th Sept 2016; downloaded from: http://ayurveda-foryou.com/women/ayurveda-for-hair-loss.html 
  3. Head lice. American Academy of Dermatology. Accessed on 18th Sept 2016; downloaded from:https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/contagious-skin-diseases/head-lice#causes  
  4. Head lice. American Academy of Dermatology. Accessed on 18th Sept 2016; downloaded from:https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/contagious-skin-diseases/head-lice#symptoms 
  5. Head Lice Diet And Nutrition. Accessed on 18th Sept 2016; downloaded from: https://www.welcomecure.com/diseases/head-lice/diet-and-nutrition 
  6. Home remedies for head lice. Accessed on 18th Sept 2016; downloaded from:http://www.ayushveda.com/homeremedies/head-lice.htm 

Disclaimer: The information on this page is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Do not use this information to diagnose or ayurvedic treatment of hair-health and/or head lice without consulting the doctor. Consult your physician before beginning an exercise regime. "While we have products /ayurvedic medicines for hair-health and/or head lice, you must consult an authorized physician before taking any of the products. For more information on products, visit www.dabur.com or call 1800-103-1644"