Local School Districts On High Alert After "Super Lice" Found In Illinois
Local school districts are on high alert after hearing reports of a massive outbreak known as super lice. It's a strain of lice that's grown resistant to treatment. The infestation is sweeping the nation, affecting both adults and small children.
Central Illinois has yet to see a strand of super lice, but the infestation has been found in not just our state, but 24 others. It's a parasite that's become immune to the typical head lice treatment.
Experts say children are the primary targets because they are more likely to share hats, combs and brushes. Although, some school districts in our area are not reporting any cases of super lice. Doctors say if your child happens to get it, there are a couple different ways to treat this highly contagious infestation.
"So we still normally treat it with a normal treatment. Over the counter, use a nitpick and stuff. That doesn't work they can come see us. We have newer medicine that will take care of it," said Dr. Kenneth Schmidt a family medicine physician with St. John's.
Staffers with District 186 and Ball-Chatham say in the past, they've seen students come down with the regular strand of head lice. Both school districts say protocol is to notify the parent immediately and send the child home until the infestation is gone. The classrooms are thoroughly sanitized to ensure others don't contract the parasites. As far as treatment at home, doctors say change sheets, pillowcases and vacuum regularly to keep the parasite from spreading.