Feb 17 2015
Re-infestation: the surprising facts about head lice and how they sometimes appear to ‘come back’.

Re-infestation and the suprising facts about Head Lice and how they appear to come back

We often get feedback from mums and dads who’ve tried head lice treatments (including NitWits and other leading brands) only to have the head lice ‘reappear’ days or weeks later.

Being a mum, I’m the first to admit this is incredibly frustrating, and as with anything that affects your children, it’s easy to end up with a cupboard full of products that seemingly ‘don’t work’.

But are the head lice really coming back or is this something else?

In our experience, if the instructions have been followed and the hair is free from lice and eggs a day or two after the treatment, there’s a good chance what you’re experiencing when the lice appear to ‘come back’ is a re-infestation, and your child has come into close contact with a friend or playmate with head lice. Another sign of re-infestation is if there are a few adult head lice present, rather than a mix of eggs, adolescent head lice and adults.

Head lice can be just like a tummy bug that goes around the family: it’s transferred from one person to the next, and quite often the first person catches it again.

Always remember that while a treatment that is designed to kill lice and eggs can be effective at the time of application, it doesn’t guarantee protection from a future infestation of head lice.

So to maximise the effectiveness of your chosen head lice treatment and minimise the chances of re-infestation follow these steps.

  1. Follow the instructions on the pack to the letter. Ensure you get the coverage of the product recommended by the manufacturer and leave it on for the exact amount of time suggested in the directions.
  2. Head lice treatment isn’t about ‘set and forget’. Follow the treatment with daily checks for the first two days. Our NitWits Anti-Lice and Detangling Spray will make this easier for both you and your child.
  3. Repeat checks every few days for up to a week. If there’s no new activity, you can be confident the treatment has worked.

Nadine Ismiel-Nash is mum to Amelie and Scarlett and the head of Research and Development for NitWits.

Nadine Ismiel - Author | Nitwits head Lice Treatment Blog
Nadine Ismiel | Author

Where to Buy NitWits Head Lice Treatment Products


New Zealand

United Kingdom

United States

Worldwide Shipping

We’re also pretty social.

Join us on Insta for some pretty pics