HeadLice.Org Hot Spots
How health care sometimes hurts patients and the environment

By Evie Bain
From the Massachusetts Nurse newsletter
Vol. 76 No. 2

At a recent meeting of A Health Tomorrow and The Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition, I had the pleasure to learn about The National Pediculosis Association and non-toxic alternatives to treating head lice.

Individual toxicity
The chemicals in pesticides used in conventional treatment for head lice, can be absorbed through the skin and inhaled by both child and the parent or whoever is applying the chemical.  Pesticides accumulate in the body and build up to toxic levels over time, especially since many other products that are used frequently contain pesticides, i.e., sun screen products containing insect repellant or insect repellant itself (very toxic products indeed).

Adverse reactions
Headache, nausea, confusion, dizziness are noted as immediate reactions to absorbed or inhaled pesticides.  They are also associated with long term health consequences including certain cancers.

Environmental toxicity
The chemicals in these products can also be found in ground water because they are not bio-degradable.  They are in a class of chemicals known as bio-accumulative toxins or BAT's.

Non-toxic alternatives exist
The National Pediculosis Association has a kit and a process called the LiceMeister and information about this product is available at its website


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