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Terri Mauro

Freeze Items Exposed to Head Lice

By November 4, 2009

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Figuring out how to get head lice out of hair is hard enough. Then comes the challenge of making sure bedding and stuffed animals are bug free. On my Readers Respond page for head-lice ideas, reader Trishh had a suggestion for infested items, as well as praise for an oft-mentioned hair remedy: "Instead of having to throw out stuffed animals or do tons of laundry, bag it and freeze it for 48 hrs. Then run what you can through the dryer. Tea tree oil smothering for hair was a lifesaver. We were all at our wits end. Never a problem since!" Do you have a head-lice tip? Pass it on.

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November 6, 2009 at 11:36 am
(1) freezing 4 lice treatment? says:

Wow! I’ve definately heard of “HEATING” them up via the hot wash and dryer experience, but never heard of freezing before…but it totally makes sense now that you mention it. It may be even better than a heater too.

I also heard of tea tree oil as being super, and there is something in that the lice detest too! Not sure why.

I will remember to “FREEZER” upon arrival for lice, but glad its over for our family. It was seriously horrible.

Thanks for the article!

November 9, 2009 at 11:02 am
(2) DanaW says:

The American Academy of Pediatrics (www.aap.org) recently shared data of an Australian study that showed that excessive measures to clean the home after a head lice outbreak are unnecessary beyond normal good housecleaning that you would normally do. In fact only 4/118 pillowcases of people known to have lice had any lice on them.

Freezing and putting items in the washer/dryer will probably do the trick. No need to throw anything away, though, as lice can only survive off the head for ~24-36 hours.

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