Head Lice
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Guidelines for managing head lice at school

Head lice can affect anyone. Head lice are annoying and may cause itching, but they do not transmit or cause disease. Children and adults’ reactions to head lice can subject children to teasing, bullying and isolation. Reactions to head lice can significantly interfere with a child’s emotional well-being, social status in the classroom and ability to learn. For these reasons, head lice infestations should be treated.

For best control of head lice

  • The primary responsibility for control of head lice rests with the family and community.
  • Public health nurses can answer questions about the management of head lice.
  • If a child has head lice they can continue to have contact with others for the remainder of the day. The parents need to be told so that they can begin treatment as soon as possible.
  • To prevent the spread of head lice and ensure that the child has received treatment, information letters should be given to parents and classroom contacts. See Recommended Head Lice Management.

Children should not be excluded from the community or school due to head lice. If there are problems with the treatment, parents are encouraged to consult a public health nurse for information and resources.

Head lice treatment options

If these are not effective or if you need more information, contact your local health unit.


MoH     PCQO