Help! I just found out we have head lice!
So you just received the unfortunate news. Maybe from you child's teacher or a friend. Maybe you discovered it yourself. What do you do?
First, take a breath and repeat after me, "It's not life or death. It's just head lice." Remind yourself that head lice are not a health issue. Just because they are icky and itchy, that doesn't mean they are a serious threat. Learn about what head lice are and are not.
Second, take another breath and say, "I can deal with this." Because you can. Think of all the other bigger problems you have dealt with in your life. This is an inconvenience but you will be able to handle this.
Third, forget a lot about what you heard about getting rid of head lice. Don't do ANY extra laundry or house cleaning - I know that most of the available information tells you that you need to bag stuffed toys and wash everything in hot water, but it is simply a waste of your time. In dealing with head lice, most people become burned out - not because of the bugs or the eggs, but because of the cleaning. Just don't do it. (Reverse NIKE psychology.)
Speaking of time wasters (and money wasters), don't put all your trust that chemical head lice treatments or "shampoos" will completely treat your head lice or reduce the time you need to spend combing. All of my business comes from people who first used a treatment (mostly the permethrin based "shampoos" like Nix and R&C). Study after study is showing that in developed nations, our lice have adapted to these pesticides. So, save your money and save your time. Head lice can be dealt with without these treatments.
Fourth, get some inexpensive tools. A great lice comb, a blow dryer, a cheap head lamp, and some cheap hair conditioner are some wonderful tools that you can use again and again with great success.
Fifth, get to work. Read this post about how to remove head lice. Again, lice only thrive on the head so this is the only area you want to spend time on. And don't feel stuck doing all the nit picking in the bathroom - pick a comfortable location. (Look where I nit pick my own children.)
Sixth, check everyone else in the household. They may not have it, but you should check to find out.
Seventh, get some rest. Have some tea or other comforting drink. Take care of yourself. This is going to be a part of your life for a while. Get informed by reading the various articles on this blog. If you start to panic, go back to step one. You need to ease your mind. This is just an inconvenience. It's part of life. You can do this.