Research has revealed that two thirds of primary school children can expect to contract headlice at least once before moving on to high school.

The survey, conducted by the Institute of Mums, found that the peak of the problem is usually when kids are seven or eight but can occur anywhere between four years old and 11.

Of the 650 parents surveyed, 69% said their child had caught headlice, at an average of 2.2 times. One in five parents has had to take time off work or cancel a social event to deal with the problem.

And it seems that parents want schools to take more responsibility, with only 16% of parents in the survey thinking schools already do enough.

Isma Javid, who runs a chain of head lice clinics in the South East agrees that schools could do more to educate both parents and children.

“Schools could teach children about head lice in lessons, for example, so that when they go home, they ask their parents to check their hair,” she said.

“They could even set ‘nit-checking’ as part of their weekly homework.”

The survey also highlighted some less mainstream head lice remedies such as lemon juice, mayonnaise, lots of hair spray, combing through conditioner and using essential oils such as lavender and tea tree.

Shockingly, some parents admitted to trying to burn the problem away with hair straighteners.

And there’s a lot of confusion surrounding treatments, it seems. 61% of parents believe tea tree oil to be as effective as chemical-based products bought from the chemist, despite there being no scientific evidence for this.

Founder of the Institute of Mums, Jessie Wilson said, “there’s a stigma attached to catching head lice. Parents don’t want to talk about it, which makes the problem worse”.

“Only half of parents admitted to alerting other parents about an outbreak of lice in their family, with many feeling it is the responsibility of the schools to spread the word and encourage greater vigilance.”

“Parents are very quick to warn others when their child contracts Chicken Pox. Unfortunately, when it comes to head lice, most are too embarrassed to tell others, and prefer to leave it up to the schools to alert parents to outbreaks.”

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Hey there, I am Nancy of Cooky Mom and I am absolutely in love with food and drink blogs. I’m on a mission to share my insider cooking, food, drink and health tips with all of you…