The Dangers of OTC Head Lice Treatments

As our kids excitedly head back to school for another term, the pestering issue of head lice remains at the back of the mind of anxious parents everywhere. Receiving the dreaded “Your-kid-has-lice-call” from school can seem like a death knoll. It’s understandable to rush in panic to the nearest drugstore and purchase an over the counter (OTC) lice treatment to get rid of the crawling critters from your little one’s head. But stop right there! Before you do that, consider the many dangers OTC lice treatments present for your kid…

They’re Not As Effective As You Think

Most OTC lice products available for use in the U.S. lice treatment market are a kind of pesticide. Permethrin is a commonly found chemical that once used to be quite effective in eliminating lice. But over the years, research has shown how head lice gradually adapted and mutated into a chemical-resistant form of super lice. These super lice have developed great resistance against treatments such as permethrin, so much so that its efficacy rating has dropped to 20-30%.

OTC Treatments Proven to be Health Hazardous

If the low efficacy rate isn’t enough to stop you in your tracks, the numerous health hazards of such OTC treatments surely will. Lindane and permethrin are two of the most commonly found substances in OTC lice treatments and they’re dangerously toxic. Permethrin is a common chemical found in pesticides and is potentially carcinogenic. It can cause the following harmful side effects:
  • Skin irritation and a burning feeling
  • Scalp irritation
  • Allergic reactions
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty in breathing
  • Runny/stuffy nose
  • May affect the reproductive system
  • Excitability, convulsions, or other nervous system symptoms
Lindane is another dangerous toxin that is a known carcinogenic that also damages the nervous system. It is so harmful that the World Health Organization recently reclassified it from a “possible carcinogenic” to a “known cause of human cancer.” It can cause side effects such as:
  • Dizziness
  • Rashes
  • Burning, itching, or stinging of the skin
  • Drowsiness
  • Seizures
  • Vomiting
  • Allergic reactions
  • Uncontrollable body shakes

Chemical-Free Lice Treatments

It is clear that using harmful OTC lice treatments that contains dangerous pesticides is just not safe, especially for use on young children. Your best bet is to steer clear of such risky remedies and instead rely on safer, chemical-free, and natural lice treatments.

About Lice Troopers

Lice Troopers is a professional lice clinic in Miami Beach and Key Biscayne. We are a team of professional hair care experts, offering the best lice treatment in addition to other lice removal services. For more information, visit our website and contact us for a free consultation today!