Does Rubbing Alcohol Kill Lice?

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Many people do not want to apply strong pesticide shampoos to their kids’ heads to kill head lice. That is why home remedies are so popular. There are a lot of home treatments for lice, and alcohol is one of them. But does rubbing alcohol kill lice?

It is a fact that people have successfully used alcohol to kill lice, especially adult head lice. However, it is by no way a proven home remedy. Although rubbing alcohol can kill head lice, it is not recommended to put alcohol directly on the hair or scalp.



Another problem with using alcohol for head lice and applying it directly to your scalp is that it can produce a chemical burn of your skin. If you or your kids have any scratches or other damaged parts on your scalp, alcohol can produce a severe burning sensation and damage hair follicles. You’d better never use alcohol to treat head lice. It is flammable! A person can become seriously ill or injured if alcohol or strong alcohol-based products are used to treat head lice.

This warning is especially relevant for those who intend to use alcohol for treating young kids for head lice. Kids rarely can sit still for a long time. If they come near a heat source with alcohol on their hair, they can catch on fire and be severely burned.

Another thing you should be careful with is treating head lice with such products as Listerine. This is a mouth wash which is often used to kill head lice. It contains 21.6 percent of alcohol, plus menthol and eucalyptol. It may be efficient for treating head lice, but it also might produce a number of undesirable side effects for your health.

Rubbing alcohol for lice is only recommended for soaking brushes and nit combs. When you comb out head lice, you can dip the comb in water and alcohol and then brush it through the hair. Again, make sure not to sit close to a heat source and not to smoke during or after this treatment.


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