Each year around Halloween, lists of safety precautions circulate the news and Internet, urging parents to adhere reflective tape to their children’s treat bags, throw away any treats that have tampered wrappers or present choking hazards, and inspect children’s heads for lice immediately after they return home. While these safety precautions are helpful and have almost certainly saved lives, we want to address one safety tip about which we can confidently and professionally speak: head lice.
Could re-using last year’s Halloween costumes transmit head lice?
Halloween head lice are real, but your kids aren’t going to get them simply from re-using last year’s Halloween costumes. Here’s why: Head lice cannot live for more than a day without feeding on human blood, and nits (or louse eggs) hatch within 7 to 10 days. Thus, even if your child was infested with head lice when they wore the costume a year ago, you can be sure that by now the lice are long gone.
Then how are Halloween head lice transmitted?
Head lice are wingless parasites that can be transmitted from sharing headgear, brushes, clothing, and towels…. or, in the case of Halloween head lice, masks, wigs and hooded costumes. So yes, it is possible for kids to get infested with lice from sharing or trying on other’s costumes.
Quick tips to prevent Halloween head lice:
Because head lice that are latched onto hair and clothing can live for up to 24 hours without feeding on human blood, we recommend each child be given his or her own costume.
Ensure that headgear like masks, hats, hoods, wigs and veils are not passed around or tried on by multiple children
That’s it! Pretty simple, huh? Have fun this Halloween and be safe. And if you find your child does have head lice, don’t sweat it! Just know that Lice Care Solutions, your local head lice removal company, is only a call or text away. If you live anywhere in the Houston area, we’ll show up at your door and remove those pesky parasites once and for all.