True or false? The usual treatments don’t work for head lice anymore.

Although growing drug resistance can make getting rid of the head lice a real pain, it's not really cause for concern. That's because lice are not dangerous. Lice don't cause health problems or spread any diseases (unlike other bugs, such as ticks), they're just an incredibly annoying problem for both parents and kids.

The fact that lice sometimes don't respond to certain treatments (like medicated over-the-counter and prescription shampoos, cream rinses, or lotions) doesn't mean that they don't ever work. They do, but it may take some time, patience, and working with your doctor to find the right one that finally gets rid of these little pests.

Lice may linger if kids are still exposed to other infested children or if the medication isn't used exactly as directed. Be sure to talk to your doctor before treating — or re-treating — your youngster for lice. 



Over-the-counter treatments for head lice are available in two forms: shampoo or cream rinse. Follow directions carefully to ensure successful treatment. Remove dead lice and nits (eggs) with a fine-tooth nit-removal comb. Repeat application of the anti-lice medication within seven to 10 days of first application, to kill any lice that may have hatched because they were missed during the combing process.

Read the following related articles to separate head lice fact from fiction:

The lowdown on lice: should you worry?

Head Lice