8 best lice combs of 2021

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Lice can appear on someone for a variety of reasons, and this does not mean that someone is dirty or does not have good hygiene habits. Lice are quite common, spread easily, do not indicate poor hygiene, and cannot be completely prevented in children , ”says Dr. Cynthia Bailey , dermatologist and founder of Dr. Bailey's Skin Care. Lice are often spread when an infected person touches another person's head, which is called head-to-head contact. " Lice don't jump or fly , but they crawl," says Dr. Bailey. "They may not live long with a pillowcase, hat, comb or brush, but this form of transmission represents only a small risk because lice can only live a day or two away from their host."

Dr. Rebecca Tung , a dermatologist at the Florida Centers for Dermatology and Skin Cancer, cautions that people can often have asymptomatic symptoms when they first become asymptomatic. "Afterwards, the most common symptom is itching in the head and neck area," he adds. "People also say they feel like something is moving in their hair." Additional symptoms include feeling irritable or unable to sleep. "You can also get sores on your head from itching, which can be infected with bacteria," says Dr. Tung.

Fortunately, you can get rid of lice with a proper comb. Dr. Tung recommends using a "narrow gap between fine metal tips" comb to catch lice (adult lice) or nits (lice eggs) that may be on the scalp. Dr. Bailey recommends washing your hair with a regular shampoo and conditioner and then combing it with a regular comb. Then switch to a lice comb. 'Start each movement with a lice comb from the roots / scalp so that the bevelled edge touches the scalp. Run the comb through all the hair, ”he says. "Check the comb for lice after each stroke and remove them by rinsing or cleaning the comb."

We've researched dozens of lice combs and ranked them based on reviews, brush size, number of teeth, reuse, ease of use, and price. Each of the combs selected in this article was rated the best of these factors.

Here are the best lice combs on the market today.

Final verdict

If you are looking for a comb that is durable and works for most conditions, we recommend a non-terminator lice comb ( see on Amazon ). For a comb that is more affordable but also includes helpful extras, we recommend the LiceMeister Lice and Nit Removal Comb (see on Amazon ).

What to look for in a lice comb

Teeth

You need to use a lice comb with closely spaced teeth, according to Albert Yang, MD, a dermatologist at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. "What I like the most is metal nit combs: they provide better results for removing lice and nits and they work better than plastic combs." They are durable and strong enough to protect scalp lice. If the teeth are long, tight and riveted, the easier it is to remove the lice from the scalp.

Dr. Bailey recommends looking for a scallop 0.2 to 0.3mm apart to properly catch lice. 'The teeth should be a little bit wider than the hair,' he says. Nits, which are lice eggs, are usually smaller and more difficult to catch, requiring even smaller cracks in the teeth of the ridges. Ultimately, a nit comb with a 0.09 to 0.19mm tooth gap is believed to provide the traction needed to remove eggs and nits, ”he says. Dr. Bailey also prefers metal combs over plastic ones.

Lever

Having to constantly adjust your hands while scratching your scalp is not only annoying but ineffective. To avoid losing your grip, buy a comb with a thick handle and padding that is soft enough to provide additional support. Also, sometimes it is easier to deal with lice removal if someone else is combing your head rather than trying to do it yourself. 'The help of a family member or friend can make a big difference in terms of a faster resolution,' says Dr. Tung. "There are even services that specialize in removing lice if you need help."

Brushing wet hair with a comb can also help you comfortably and your ability to grip the brush firmly as you move it over your scalp.

Additional procedures

Treating lice can be a tedious process, but it is important to completely eradicate the infestation so that the lice and nits do not return. "Yes, using a lice comb is an important part of treatment, but lice treatment requires more, including washing hats, scarves, coats, bedding, brushes and combs," says Dr. Bailey. Ideally, wash pillows and any fabric items in hot water at around 60 degrees Celsius and then tumble dry on a high setting of 60 degrees Celsius, he adds. This will help remove live lice and nits. "While lice are not believed to live on carpet, it doesn't hurt to vacuum the carpet and furniture in the room of a person with lice," says Dr. Bailey.

Lice can be very contagious, so it is very important to wash tissue surfaces that have also potentially been exposed to the infestation. "Fortunately, lice that are not found in the human body only survive for 1 to 2 days," says Dr. Tung. Dr. Tung says that over-the-counter medications, in addition to the comb, can help get rid of someone's lice. "These drugs (containing pyrethrin or permethrin) are left on for the recommended period of time and then washed off," he says. "After 8-12 hours, you will be combing the dead lice with a fine tooth comb."

Frequently asked questions

  • One of the key features to consider when purchasing a comb is that it will be able to withstand multiple washes between uses. This is because these combs need to be cleaned after each extraction session so that no live lice or nits are left on the surface. 'Once you are done using the comb, rinse it with hot soapy water, ”says Dr. Tung. "Rinse with hot water for 10 to 30 minutes, then pat dry and rub with alcohol." This process ensures that all lice and nits are removed from the ridge before removing it.

  • Home treatment is often enough to combat lice infestations, but medical attention may sometimes be required. If you don't find dead lice during home treatment, but many are still alive, or you have persistent, worsening, or new symptoms, you should see your doctor, as prescribed treatment may be necessary, ”says Dr. Tung. "These prescription ingredients include benzyl alcohol and topical ivermectin (recently approved over the counter)."

    Dr. Bailey adds that people should also see a doctor if they have an allergic reaction to saliva. "Scratching an itchy scalp can lead to impetigo" she says. "If you are struggling to get rid of a lice infestation and / or the itch persists, it is time to seek medical attention."

What the experts say

'Be wary of group selfies, sharing hats or helmets, brushes or combs, or placing bedding on pillows that an infected person has recently used. If you suspect you've been in contact with someone who may have lice, get your hair checked! "- Dr. Rebecca Tung , a dermatologist at the Florida Centers for Dermatology and Skin Cancer.

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