Lice are annoying and hard to get rid of type parasite. You can get lice by coming in contact with a lice-infested person or these can infest your head if you don’t take care of your hair. Even lying on their bed or using their scarf, hair clips or comb can make you get lice. Once you are infested with it, it becomes unbearable over time and hard to get rid of. Even though these are not life-threatening, the itchiness and discomfort it causes are beyond tolerance.

We know lice need a human host to live and breed. However, it can stay on non-living things too for a few days. Without getting in contact with a host, they can live for more than a week. So, if you want to get rid of them from your hair, clean up everything else as well that you used like your hair accessories, mattress, pillows, clothes, etc.

Sometimes the lice are so persistent that they just don’t go away. No matter how many times you comb or use lice shampoos, they stay still. That’s why people come up with different home remedies or ideas to get rid of them immediately. One of those ways is using rubbing alcohol. But does rubbing alcohol actually kill lice?

Rubbing alcohol to kill head lice

Rubbing alcohol seemed to be one of those remedies people believe to get rid of head lice. It is mostly Isopropyl alcohol. It is used as an antiseptic along with having vast usage. From cleaning to disinfecting, this substance has a lot of use. And when it comes to getting rid of lice, rubbing alcohol seems like a wonder.

Even if it seems to help with lice treatment rubbing alcohol can damage your hair, you should avoid putting it directly on your head. Head lice are also living beings with protein as their main body part or system. The acetic solution of rubbing alcohol will get into the lice’s body system and kill them by breaking their protein bonds. Even the odor itself is powerful enough to make the system break. However, whether rubbing alcohol actually does all these or not is still not proven.

Combing is the main thing here. No matter where you search or get information, people used rubbing alcohol on the comb. There are different kinds of Lice comb. Rubbing alcohol may help the lice to get weak or something, without combing those tiny parasites will still be on your head. And it will take no time for those lice to get back to their original state. That’s why combing is a necessity here.

Putting rubbing alcohol directly on your hair is a crazy thing to do. Since it is an acid, it will make the hair dehydrated and frizzy. Your scalp is sensitive skin and it can cause irritation and burning too. That’s why the effectiveness of rubbing alcohol for killing lice is still not sure.

How to get rid of Lice?

Prescribed products

To get rid of lice, be it prescribed products or home remedies; both work. However, home remedies have less effectiveness than prescribed ones. You can use over-the-counter treatment too. There are so many possible products you can use to get rid of lice. Make sure to get the safe one that people ensured or your doctor has prescribed. And get to know the side effects and what to do and do not.


The most basic thing to get rid of lice is combing. Lice combs are easy to get and they will make lice stuck and get out of hair after every combing. Metal combs seem to have a better result than plastic ones. You can comb the hair every three to four days for about two weeks. Even after getting rid of the lice, be sure to check sometimes after by combing if there are any nits or lice left.

Home remedies

For home remedies, tea tree oil, olive oil, mayonnaise, or vaseline seems to work somewhat. But they don’t get rid of them immediately. Among them, tea tree oil has the upper hand. Suffocating them with vaseline or mayonnaise is messy and needs to be done a few more times though.

Cleaning the house

After getting rid of head lice, you should not settle yet. If you have been attacked with this infestation even after getting rid of them, you should understand the serious mistake behind it. We said how these parasites can live on their own even after a few days. That means they can live on your clothes, the mattress/pillow/sheets you have been lying on, and even in any corner of your house. That’s why cleaning is an absolute necessity for you to say bye-bye to these lice permanently.

Lice cannot withstand high temperature or heat and they automatically die if they don’t find a host after a week or more. That means, either you should clean your house with heat-related things or just don’t get in contact with those things for a week. It’s not like you can just go on a vacation to kill these lice. 

The things you can wash easily like sheets, cloths, combs, scarves, etc, wash them with warm water. The temperature must be more than 100°C. You can wash them more than once to be completely relieved. It will be better to sun dry them. When the weather outside is too hot, it will be perfect to toss your mattress outside to get heat. If not, just seal it and don’t use it for a week.


Being a healthcare instructor, Elthea's experience and prevision have made an important role that she shared with us and you as well.

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