Head lice are wingless flat insects which infect the hair, laying eggs and feeding on human blood from the scalp. Essential oils can be used to treat head lice as some kinds of essential oils such as aniseed, cinnamon leaf, red thyme, tea tree, peppermint, nutmeg, rosemary, and pine have been tested against lice. All of these oils were found to be useful in the laboratory when they have been tested in an alcoholic solution. Peppermint and nutmeg were only used as a blend rather than as individual oils.
There is more than one kind of shampoo, medical treatment, or essential oil that are used to eliminate the lice. The effective essential oils are:
1 Tea tree oil
Use a vinegar and tea tree oil mixture to help relieve head lice. Tea tree oil has excellent antiseptic properties to treat infections while apple cider vinegar may help loosen the lice eggs in the scalp.
Note: Before using any essential oil, put a small drop on the back of your child’s hand. It is pretty rare, but some kids have allergic reactions to these oils, especially tea tree oil. If your child is allergic to one of these oils, move on to the next oil on our list.
2 Olive oil
Olive oil has been tested and proven to be able to kill head lice. Combine equal amounts of vinegar and olive oil in a bowl. For a shorter hair, use about a third of a cup and a half of the same cup and more of this amount for long hair. A mixture of vinegar and tea tree or olive oil will do well on the scalp. Put the mixture on the hair. Massage on the scalp, behind the ears and at the base of the neck. Leave this mixture on the scalp and hair for at least 12 hours. Then shampoo it, use lice comb to remove all the remaining lice and nits from the hair. Once the lice have been eliminated, you can use the alcohol spray as a preventive treatment.
3 Almond oil
There are also some of the natural “suffocating” or “smothering” treatments that work well; they work best if you followed the instructions. And, it’s important to note that, it is the combing that does the work as the “suffocating” treatments slow the movement of the lice and make them easier to catch on the comb. Coat the hair with olive or almond oil. Vaseline and mayonnaise are not recommended. Work under a good light so you can see everything clearly. Also, rinse out the comb often under running hot water as you go. Once you have completely combed your child’s hair, use his/her regular shampoo, rinse, and repeat the process. Check on the hair again in the next morning.
As an alternative, you can soak the combs in vinegar for 30 minutes or boil in water for 10 minutes. Follow this procedure every day for a week. Then, for the next two weeks, check (by combing) every night to make sure the lice are gone.
Now you know a few methods of treating lice through different types of essential oils. Try to test the essential oil before using it on your kid’s hair. Use a mixture of vinegar with olive oil or tea tree oil. Both methods work. You can also use almond oil as well. I hope you enjoyed this article and it has been useful to you. Best of luck.