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 Post subject: Re: Phil Maynard's polio
PostPosted: 25 Feb 2013, 13:52 
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My understanding is that the lice/nits have become resistant to the evil-smelling insecticide lotions that would have been used in the 1950s to 80s. I never had them as a child, but by the time my children went to school and I became a primary teacher in the late 90s/early noughties, they were endemic and the approved method was using a nit comb on very wet hair covered with hair conditioner. This did work, but you had to do it every other day for two weeks to break the reproduction cycle, and it wasn't much fun for the child involved. The electronic nit combs were also quite effective.

Hence, I think it's more than likely that they would not have been an issue at the Chalet School. There's a lovely episode in Monica Edwards in which Lindsey pretends to have them to disguise the fact that she has cut her hair - and also a fabulous Posy Simmonds cartoon from the early 80s in which Wendy Weber is explaining the 'they prefer clean hair - nothing to do with dirt' factors to the playgroup mums who then assume they've come from her. I experienced one attack as a student (dodgy mattress in a student house) which resulted in the lotion treatment; I remember the bottle label stated firmly, 'It is no disgrace to get lice, but it is to keep them.'


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 Post subject: Re: Phil Maynard's polio
PostPosted: 25 Feb 2013, 15:51 
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Receiving support from the form
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I believe the fine-tooth comb with conditioner method is still in use, which is why I object to my grandson's hair not being combed daily - also that of his friends who have riotously curly hair, which is apparently never combed. I don't blame the parents, children that age don't like having their hair combed very much - but what happens when they get nits and have to have it combed? I'd rather they get used to it now with a nice, wide comb than their first introduction be with a fine-tooth comb!

Veering off-topic here, so to bring it back, I can just see Matey requiring people like Gay Lambert to comb their hair as well as brush it for just that reason (nit combs have been around for a very long time, well over 100 years!).


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 Post subject: Re: Phil Maynard's polio
PostPosted: 25 Feb 2013, 17:27 
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Nit combs have been around a very long time! They were among the artifacts found on the Mary Rose and I'm not sure there isn't evidence from even earlier history!


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 Post subject: Re: Phil Maynard's polio
PostPosted: 25 Feb 2013, 19:01 
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Does anyone else remember 'Nora the nit explorer' coming into school? I'm sure most of us of a 'certain age' have memories of that lady's visits. :lol:

That was our name for the poor lady. I have no idea what her real name was.

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 Post subject: Re: Phil Maynard's polio
PostPosted: 25 Feb 2013, 19:44 
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Ours was also known as Nitty Nora (the bug explorer) :D .

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 Post subject: Re: Phil Maynard's polio
PostPosted: 25 Feb 2013, 20:49 
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According to QI, they don't prefer clean heads at all, just live ones :)


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 Post subject: Re: Phil Maynard's polio
PostPosted: 25 Feb 2013, 20:52 
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whitequeen wrote:
According to QI, they don't prefer clean heads at all, just live ones :)


I can attest to that from personal experience since both of my times of getting them happened at Guide camp - and whatever else that was, it certainly wasn't clean!

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 Post subject: Re: Phil Maynard's polio
PostPosted: 19 Mar 2013, 17:30 
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Joined: 22 Sep 2009, 20:27
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I have difficult hair and am dreading catching them from my toddler (so I check her hair every week). What on earth would I do if I got them? No one to comb them out for me. (Husband would be useless at that.) I think there's a business opportunity there - I would definitely pay someone to gently and discreetly de-nit my hair!


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 Post subject: Re: Phil Maynard's polio
PostPosted: 19 Mar 2013, 17:35 
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I caught nits as an adult, when I was a care assistant in a nursing home. I used a lot of tea tree conditioner - they don't like tea tree - and combed my hair very thoroughly with a nit comb before rinsing out the conditioner. I did that every day for about ten days: it was time consuming but did the trick. My hair is very thick and curly, and nearly waist length, so I'm sure you would cope, Scotty!

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 Post subject: Re: Phil Maynard's polio
PostPosted: 19 Mar 2013, 23:23 
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Having Miss Ferrars as Form Mistress
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Joined: 29 Dec 2009, 15:11
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Just reading these comments and my head is itching!


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 Post subject: Re: Phil Maynard's polio
PostPosted: 20 Mar 2013, 19:40 
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When I was in the Hermitage museum in St Petersburg a few years ago in one of the displays was a small silver box-like thing with tiny holes in it. When we asked what it was we were told it was Catherine the Great's lice catcher.

We couldn't figure out how it would work. but it was actually rather pretty .....


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 Post subject: Re: Phil Maynard's polio
PostPosted: 21 Mar 2013, 00:31 
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I have a strange little piece of equipment my mother had found among her mother's things. It is a small ivory tube, carved in a pattern of holes, and comes apart in the middle. My mother was told it was a flea catcher, and that you put meat inside it to attract the fleas which would then leave you alone. I can't vouch for the accuracy of this ( or the efficacy ) but it sounds rather similar.


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 Post subject: Re: Phil Maynard's polio
PostPosted: 24 Oct 2013, 17:35 
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Thanks Joey, I've just seen your advice. I have a solution anyway as there's a company with a nit vacuum who guarantee to de-lice you in one session. Only near London but I reckon it's worth the train fare.


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 Post subject: Re: Phil Maynard's polio
PostPosted: 24 Oct 2013, 20:20 
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jenah wrote:
When I was in the Hermitage museum in St Petersburg a few years ago in one of the displays was a small silver box-like thing with tiny holes in it. When we asked what it was we were told it was Catherine the Great's lice catcher.

We couldn't figure out how it would work. but it was actually rather pretty .....


Jenah, I remember seeing that as well! I asked how it worked and was told that, similar to Doot, you put a substance in that the lice adored (I don't recall it being meat, though I can't remember what it was), the lice were attracted it it and then it was taken out, emptied into the fire or dipped in a liquid that would kill the lice, and then refilled and used again.

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 Post subject: Re: Phil Maynard's polio
PostPosted: 24 Oct 2013, 22:08 
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Scotty wrote:
Thanks Joey, I've just seen your advice. I have a solution anyway as there's a company with a nit vacuum who guarantee to de-lice you in one session. Only near London but I reckon it's worth the train fare.


Do they do fleas as well? I have a fleabag of a cat and no matter what treatments I try he always seems to have fleas. :(

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