Home Remedies vs. OTC Treatments – What Works Better for Lice?

Head lice have become quite common among school-going kids and repeat infestations have become a recurring nuisance for parents around the country. But thankfully, there are a number of remedies for eradicating lice from your life completely. There are many prescription treatments as well as home remedies that promise to get rid of lice. But which method works better when it comes to kicking lice to the curb once and for all? Both, OTC treatments and home remedies, have their own pros and cons, and varying degrees of effectiveness. Let’s take a closer look to see which one is safer and more effective, or if there is a better option than both.

Over-The-Counter (OTC) Treatments

If you’re thinking of opting for OTC treatments as a means of eliminating lice, look for these two ingredients:
  • Pyrethrins: Pyrethrins are naturally extracted from chrysanthemums and are safe for use on children of age 2 years and above. However, this ingredient can only kill active lice and not their nits. Also, some people can be allergic to the ingredient.
  • 1% Permethrin Lotion (Nix): Another commonly used synthetic OTC treatment is Nix. This can kill both live lice and nits.
While OTC treatments can remove lice fast, they are not always the best of choices when it comes to young children. Containing toxic pesticides, conventional OTC treatments can be dangerous. They’re also not a 100% effective for everyone. Also, head lice in the U.S. have become resistant to OTC treatments containing Lindane, Ovide, Malathion, and Permethrin. Developing resistance, they and have evolved into super lice.

Home Remedies

otc shampoos kill licePeople who are aware of the toxicity and health hazards of OTC treatments often resort to home remedies as a second option. While OTC shampoos kill lice by poisoning them, home remedies work on getting rid of lice through suffocation or dehydration. For example, viscous substances such as mayonnaise, petroleum jelly, or olive oil when coated on hair, can cut off the lice’s air supply, thus smothering them. Another commonly used home remedy for lice is using essential oils such as tea tree oil and lavender oil to kill lice. Tea tree oil has terpenoides in it which act as a natural pesticide for the lice’s nervous system. However, this too should be used in moderation and with caution. Dehydrating lice through salt and vinegar is also a common lice treatment. The salt works on dehydrating the lice while the vinegar kills them off. But it may not be able to kill adult lice. While safer than OTC treatments, natural home remedies still aren’t 100% effective for getting rid of lice. Either they only manage to kill the live lice, leaving nits behind to hatch and restart the infestation, or they don’t have any effect whatsoever.

A Natural Alternative?

OTC treatments and home remedies make parents and kids go through unnecessary hassle only to fail at the end in eliminating lice. Your best chance of getting rid of those pesky critters is by enlisting the help of a professional lice removal clinic that offers natural remedies. Here at Lice Troopers, we offer the best lice treatment in Orlando Winter Park. We use pesticide free products to ensure lice removal in one sitting. Call us now at 800-403-5423 to schedule an appointment!