Lice cases increase during Halloween season

Halloween season brings out the creey crawlies but people of all ages may be exposing themselves to something truly spooky unintentionally.

Posted: Oct. 13, 2017 4:03 PM
Updated: Oct. 13, 2017 4:03 PM

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) - Halloween season brings out the creey crawlies but people of all ages may be exposing themselves to something truly spooky unintentionally. 

Health experts say they often see a rise in head lice cases this time of year as shoppers, young and old, try on Halloween costumes.

Dean's Party Mania shopper Mindi Riggs says she needs a wig to complete her costume. While lice is not he first thought she says it is still something she considers. 

“You know, if you wanted to try on a wig and you’re thinking okay, there’s a lot of other people probably that have tried this on. So yeah, I think that it is something I would think about.” 

At Harrold Beauty Academy in Terre Haute students learn how to recognize and then remove lice. 

Instructor Jamie Harrold says there are things you can do to avoid ever coming in contact with the icky creatures. 

“If you actually do want to try something on, I highly recommend taking a cap, like a swimmers cap or whatever, to put on.” 

Experts say one way to kill the lice is to take your costume and put it in a plastic bag, seal it, then place it outside for 48 hours. You can also throw it in the dryer on high heat for 45 minutes. Both techniques help to suffocate the lice. 

Harrold says there are products customers can use to kill lice but does not recommend doing anything without professional guidance. 

“The best way is to call the doctor, absolutely call the doctor. That’s the best way, only way you’re going to get rid of them for sure. They will tell you step by step what you should do.” 

Killing the lice is only one step in the process. 

Harrold says, “Once you are treated for the lice you actually have to get in there and remove the eggs because they stick to the hair.” 

Experts say anyone can get lice at any time. Harrold says lice often prefer clean hair. 

 

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