RT Cunningham


Head Lice Removal is a Filipino Pastime

head lice I’m not kidding. It’s mostly Filipino women (“Filipinas”) I see removing head lice from other people, but I’ve seen men as well – usually working on a girl’s head. They will spend hours and hours delousing hair and they seem to enjoy doing it. Just for your information, the singular form of “lice” is “louse”. The only thing Filipinos spend more time doing is gambling and drinking (not all of them, of course).

Problems with Head Lice

It’s amazing, to me, how so many people can be afflicted with head lice. They spread in many ways and it seems to me that no one wants to put any effort into prevention.

If children are playing together and one child has head lice, all of them will have it. If two or more children sleep in a bed and one child has it, all of them will have it. The solution is treat an entire group for it, not one at a time.

Head Lice Treatments

In the area where I live, the number one treatment seems to be using louse combs and picking them from the hair strands one by one. I know for a fact they can buy lice shampoo because I’ve bought it myself.

A few years ago, one of my older nieces had a really bad case of head lice. No one wanted to work on her head because it seemed fruitless. I went to one of the drug stores and asked for kuto shampoo and I was told they didn’t have it. A relative was with me and repeated it as lice shampoo and they suddenly had it. Apparently, not everyone here knows that kuto translates into lice.

Just before I left the Philippines in 2012, I bought two small bottles of lice shampoo for two other nieces. The other niece no longer needed it. To this day, she has no lice in her hair. That’s probably because she’s too old to play with other children (she’s 17) and because she’s the only one who sleeps in her bed.

Head Lice at School

The children here go to school whether they have head lice or not. The private and public school systems don’t seem to have a problem with it.

When I was growing up, children who had lice weren’t allowed to go to school until the situation was rectified. I understand some school districts (probably in California) now allow them to go. I wonder how long it’ll be before they declare it an epidemic or something.

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By RT Cunningham
January 19, 2016