Should children with head lice swim in public pools?

Should children with head lice swim in public pools?

There’s good news and bad news here. It’s often thought that lice will drown in a pool or be killed by chlorine, but they can survive for several hours in water, even when its chlorinated. Lice and even their eggs (nits) have pores designed to block water and many chemicals.

The good news though is that lice aren’t swimmers and are in fact less likely to be spread in a pool. The lice grip even tighter to the hair follicle when in water and don’t let get go when submerged.

Having said that, the most common way that lice travel from one child to another – head to head contact – often occurs during play in pools and therefore still poses a slight risk.

What if lice are dislodged in a pool?

In the unlikely event that a louse is knocked loose from an infested child’s head in a pool it can float on the water surface for several hours. If another head bobs up in the vicinity the lice might reattach itself to the new host. The chance of this happening is extremely low, but it does happen.

What preventative measures can be taken?

A swimming cap can prevent head lice from attaching to the hair follicles in a swimming pool, as well as protecting the hair from damaging pool chemicals. Obviously, the sharing of swimming caps should be avoided.

Can lice be spread outside the pool?

Lice are much more likely to be passed from one child to another outside the pool than in it. Towels, hairbrushes and hats can cause the spread of lice and nits, although

this is again quite uncommon. Nevertheless, children should be encouraged to not share any item that has been in contact with another child’s hair infested with lice.

Kill lice and eggs with Licener Head Lice Treatment

The pores on lice and nits which block water can’t block Licener, which kills lice and eggs with a single treatment in just 10 minutes, with no combing required to be effective.

Swimming is even possible straight after using Licener, as it won’t affect the treatment.

Sources: licesquad.com, cdc.gov, licedoctors.com