You’re probably wondering what do nits look like on paper towel? You need not think more about it as this article discusses in detail what nits look like on paper towels, comb, and in the hair, so you will be able to identify them in any case of infestation. This article will also provide different methods of getting rid of it. Nits are the eggs of lice.
Lice are tiny wingless insects that live off the blood of humans. The female lice lay about 3-10 eggs daily, at an angle on the hair shaft close to the scalp where the temperature is suitable for keeping them warm until they hatch.
Nits are not harmful, although they can be disturbing. They attach to the hair shaft so tightly that it makes getting rid of them difficult. To get rid of nits, it is important that you at least know what they look like, and the plain white background of a paper towel could help provide a better visual. If you think your child has nits or even you have nits in your hair, to know what they look like, a paper towel could be of great help.
WHAT DO NITS LOOK LIKE?
Nits are small, about the size of a sesame seed, symmetrically oval, brown or yellow colored when they are occupied, but turn white when they’re hatched. Their color often blends with that of the hair of their host, so spotting them may be difficult.
Nits accumulate in numbers in the area of the head known as “the hotspot of the head”. These spots are the head’s crown, behind the ears, and the nape of the neck. Nits stick firmly to an individual hair strand on one side of the hair. They look like tiny grains of sand.
WHAT CAN BE MISTAKEN FOR NITS?
There are a few things that could be mistaken for nits. A very common one is dandruff, which is made up of dead skin cells and looks like small white flakes on the scalp. Sebaceous filaments are also mistaken for nits. These are small white or yellowish balls that are formed when sebum –an oily substance secreted by the sebaceous gland, is secreted so much that it makes the hair look dirty or greasy. Also, insects like ants, fleas, and bedbugs are sometimes mistaken for nits due to their similarity in shape, size, and ability to make their victims itch.
HOW DO NITS SPREAD?
Nits may not be harmful, but they are easily contagious. A simple thing as head-to-head contact with someone who is infested could get you infested too. Nits infestation usually starts with a few female adult head lice making their way onto the scalp of the head. Once there, they lay their eggs (nits) and create a sticky substance with their saliva so that the nits can stick well to the hair. It usually takes an average of 6-9 days for the eggs to hatch. Nits could also be spread through clothes and beddings, however, this is rare.
HOW TO KNOW YOU HAVE NITS
The most common way to know you have nits in your hair is the itchiness which is caused by an allergic reaction to the bites of lice. Other symptoms that could indicate that you have nits in your hair are:
- Irritation of the scalp
- The feeling of something crawling on your head
- Finding dried spots of blood on your scalp.
WHAT DO NITS LOOK LIKE IN HAIR?
We have now known what nits look like generally, but when they are in your hair or that of your baby’s what do they look like and how you can easily identify them when looking for them? When nits are in the hair, they tend to blend easily with the color of your natural hair, and they stay close to the scalp as they get the warmth that way. Although they may look like dandruff in the hair, the major difference is that nits don’t move easily when you try to get them out, dandruff on the other hand does.
WHAT DO NITS LOOK LIKE ON COMB
You are probably trying to get nits out of your hair or that of your child, by combing them out. Combing is not an easy way of getting rid of nits, but could what you see on the comb after combing your hair or your child’s, be nits or just dandruff? On comb, nits could look small, brown, tan, or gray colored.
So if you notice anything with these features caught between the teeth of your comb after combing out your hair, you may have just caught a nit. However, you want to be sure about this, so you could place your comb on a white paper towel and take a much closer look. Use a magnifying glass if it aids your visuals.
WHAT DO NITS LOOK LIKE ON PAPER TOWEL?
What do nits look like on paper towel, this is probably your next line of question. Taking a much closer look at the paper towel you had placed your comb on, what are you expecting to see? On a paper towel, nits look like a small sesame seed. They may also look like their tails are sticking out at the back.
This is where the glue from the mother’s saliva used to keep the nits on the hair is peeled off. With the white background of the paper towel, you will be able to notice their real shade. Nits have a color of amber but may appear more golden or brown on a paper towel.
HOW TO GET RID OF NITS
If you suspect a nit infestation in your child or even yourself, you must act fast to get rid of them. Nits can spread fast, but with proper and immediate treatment, you can get rid of them. There are a few ways you could go about getting rid of nits, the recommended treatment by NHS is wet combing, however, there are other known methods that have been used by people to combat the situation.
To get rid of nits, you could try any of the following methods:
1. Wet Combing
Nits are easy to spot when the hair is wet, so wash the hair with your normal shampoo and apply a conditioner afterward. Wet combing out nits requires a special type of comb with fine teeth. You can get it at a pharmacy. So while the hair is still wet with conditioner in it, use comb the hair from its roots to its tip. Simply combing wet hair without applying a conditioner will not be effective in getting rid of nits as wet hair can tangle and cause disrupted movement of the comb through the hair.
To make this easier for you, you can part the hair into different sections, this will make it a lot easier for you. Finally, use a paper towel to clean off the nits and conditioner of the comb. Do these whole steps repetitively until you are certain your hair is nit free.
Know that the time you spend wet combing your hair should differ depending on the nature and type of hair you have. If you have short hair, you can spend 10 minutes, or less, wet combing it, whereas longer or curly hair could take up to 30 minutes.
2. Brush With Hot Air
This method is considered the most efficient and successful method of getting rid of nits. It involves the use of an electric device, that you have to keep on for about 15 minutes. This method ensures the complete removal of nits from your hair.
3. Medical Treatment
Some sprays and lotions have been made for the removal of nits, however, according to Carl Cumming, a Montreal pediatrician, these sprays and lotions have little or no effect in getting rid of nits.
4. Use Of Non-Pesticide Treatment
You could use non-pesticide treatments such as the use of isopropyl myristate which can dissolve the exoskeleton of lice so they dehydrate and die, or silicone oil which kills both live and nits. If after several attempts to get rid of nits and you still find them in your or your child’s hair, go to your local pharmacist.
They may recommend some medications to help get rid of nits. The medication can take 1-2 days to completely get rid of the nits and may need to be repeated to make sure that all freshly hatched nits are also removed from the hair.
Whatever the method you have chosen to use in getting rid of nits may be, always remember to wash any items that were used in the process, and also wash items that came in contact with the hair, such as hats, and pillows.
Nits are eggs of lice and are not harmful, but can be easily contagious, from simple things such as head-to-head contact or sharing a hat with an infected person.
They blend easily into the hair color and can be difficult to detect. On the hair, nits may look white, but to get a clear visual, you can use a paper towel, as the white background brings out the real shade.
If you suspect your child has a nit infestation, simply shampoo, condition, and wet comb the hair. Then use a paper towel to rub through the hair. If there are nits in the hair, you’ll see what would look like a small sesame seed, golden or brown.