Head lice can be overwhelming and the task of cleaning up your
house can seem daunting. Here are 7 steps to get rid of head lice
and bring your home back to a lice free environment:
- Gather all personal items such as combs, brushes, hats, hair
clips, headbands, headsets, helmets, clothing, stuffed animals,
costumes, pillows and coats for clean up.
- Soak all hair care items (such as combs, brushes, hair clips,
etc.) in hot water (130°F) for 15 minutes to kill any head lice
that may be on them.
- For items that cannot be soaked in hot water such as headsets
or helmets, place them in a tightly sealed plastic bag and put them
in a freezer for 10-12 hours to kill the lice and eggs.
- Wash all bedding and clothing that your child has used in hot
water (at least 130°F) OR run them through your dryer's hottest
setting for at least 30 minutes. Be sure to dry clean items that
cannot be washed. Head lice will not survive the heat from the
- Place items that cannot be cleaned or run through the dryer
(such as stuffed animals and toys) in a tightly sealed plastic bag
for 10-14 days. This is to ensure that any newly hatched lice will
- Follow up with the vacuum to get rid of any lice dust or egg
shells that were left behind. According to the NPA, vacuuming is
the safest way to remove lice and fallen hairs with attached nits
from upholstered furniture, rugs, stuffed animals, or car seats.
You want to vacuum wherever someone with head lice may have rested
- Conduct a family head check once a week. You'll need an
egg removal comb, a magnifying glass and lots of light. Start at
the nape of the neck where lice like to congregate and work
For more information about head lice, watch our video Fight
Head Lice with the Facts.