How to Get Rid of Lice Naturally

By Kacey Kroh, Abshier House

If you are cautious about introducing unnatural chemicals to your body, your pet’s body, or your home, you can remove lice quickly, easily, and naturally without unneeded chemical treatments or medications.

Let’s face it lice and lice eggs (nits) are gross. The nasty little blood suckers once introduced into your home can multiply rapidly if you aren’t attentive about removing them quickly. Lice outbreaks are pretty common, but you can get rid of lice with medications, chemical mousses, soaps, and ointments.

remove lice naturally
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How to remove body lice naturally

Body lice are the hardest to get rid of naturally. The lice don’t actually live on your skin or hair but instead live in the seams of clothing and bedding. They usually only infest an area in which too many people are living too closely together. To get rid of body lice, try following these steps:

  1. Inspect clothing and bedding for lice and nits.If any lice or eggs are found or if you are in doubt, carefully place the items in a garbage bag and remove them. If you wish to keep contaminated items, you can wash them in very hot water with an all-natural detergent and bake them in the dryer. Repeat the process until you are sure there are no signs of life. Then package the items and put them away for at least 30 days, this will ensure if any nits slipped through your inspection, they will hatch and die quickly without a food source.
  2. Vacuum and mop the whole living space.Vacuuming ensures that if any eggs or lice fell off of your clothing or bedding, they won’t try to recolonize. Multiple waves of outbreaks are common if you do not clean your house meticulously. In areas without carpet, you can mop with 1 cup apple cider vinegar per every 1 gallon of very hot water.
  3. Shower or bathe regularly with your preferred all-natural soap.Body lice only come in contact with human skin when they are feeding. They are larger than other lice and are easy to spot and remove. A quick all-over body scrub with a washcloth or loufa should do the trick.
  4. Massage oils on your skin.Massaging oils such as essential oils, coconut oil, or neem oil on your skin will naturally repel louse and also help soothe the itching associated with bites.

How to remove head lice naturally

Head lice are treated a bit differently from body lice. They only lay eggs on hair shafts and don’t travel far from their food source. To get rid of head lice, try following these steps:

  1. Quarantine the infected.Have the person who has the head lice wear a shower cap or stay in a small room (preferably a bathroom) while you get prepared for the other steps. The smaller the room the easier it will be to inspect and clean the area after you remove the lice from the host.
  2. Wash clothing and bedding to remove stray lice.You don’t need to throw away your clothes and bedding since head lice do not usually attach nits to fabric. Washing the items only once in very hot water mixed with an all-natural detergent or 1 cup apple cider vinegar will be more than adequate.
  3. Clean items and areas the infected head has touched.Wash hats, boil combs and brushes, and inspect furniture for contamination. Steam clean furniture if necessary. Vacuum and mop as needed.
  4. Apply apple cider vinegar to head.Dilute ½ cup apple cider vinegar with ½ cup water and pour it over the hair, making sure to wet the whole scalp. Apple cider vinegar will loosen the nits and irritate the live lice.
  5. Comb hair thoroughly with a nit comb.A nit comb is a comb with very dense teeth. If you do not have access to a nit comb, any fine-toothed comb will do. Carefully inspect the scalp as you use the comb to remove lice and nits. Make sure you double check that you got every nit so a second outbreak does not occur. Boil the comb when finished.
  6. Massage oils into hair and scalp.Use coconut oil or essential oils like oregano, lavender, tea tree, mint, and thyme oil. You can easily apply oils with a spray bottle to avoid over application. Dilute 3–5 drops of oil with ¼ cup water and spray into your hair while you use the nit comb. Do not shampoo your hair for 2 days and reapply oil as needed. Essential oils not only aide in the removal of nits but are very irritating to lice, naturally repelling them, and can sometimes kill them.

If you’ve tried everything and have nuclear lice that even a bomb won’t kill, consider hair removal or, as a last resort, a chemical treatment.

How to remove pubic lice naturally

Pubic lice, also known as crabs or crab lice, are simple to get rid of. Because they are found in the genital area and behave just like head lice, you can easily throw away undergarments that have come in contact with the lice, wash bedding, and shave or wax the genital and perianal areas of the body completely.

Keep in mind, you can follow the same steps to remove pubic lice as you would head lice.

Refrain from using public facilities, clean your home bathroom thoroughly, and do not have sexual contact with anyone until you are certain the lice are eradicated.

How to remove pet lice naturally

Pet lice is most common with dogs and, like with all lice, it is species-specific. Your cat can’t get lice from you or your dog and vice versa. Removing lice from pets is no different than removing it from yourself or any other member of your household. The process can be daunting since animals sport so much more hair than you do, but it can be completed if you are willing to put up a fight. Try some or all of the following tips:

  • Quarantine the pet from other pets of the same species.
  • Bathe the pet more regularly.
  • Do not take the pet to pet parks, kennels, or any other pet designated areas.
  • Apply essential oils and brush the pet methodically.
  • Steam clean flooring/carpets and keep pet outside until outbreak is over.
  • Inspect pet and house daily for lice and nits.

If your pet’s lice do not go away, consult a veterinarian or consider a chemical treatment.