Lice vs Dandruff: How To Tell The Difference?

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Lice and dandruff both are the two most common conditions that affect the human head or scalp. Lice are small insects that suck the blood of the human scalp. They lay eggs on the hair shafts, so they move through the overall head, behind the ears, or around the neck. We know these eggs as nits. Dandruff is a non-living scalp in poor conditions, which creates patches on the skin or the upper layer of the scalp. It is not exactly related to poor hygiene because I saw many cases which allow me to conclude this.

Lice Symptoms

  • Itching or crawling: They cause itching. Crawling sensation, you may feel because these tiny insects crawl through the scalp. It can irritate you more than dandruff. When your skin is dry, dandruff can cause itchiness.
  • Location: Lice live near the scalp. They need the heat of the human skin or head, that’s why they are called head lice.
  • Where can be found? Lice are the small living parasite. Lice can be found on the scalp, behind the ears, or around the neck.

Dandruff Symptoms

  • Itching: If you feel itching through your hair or head, it may be dandruff in your hair. This is the patchy or creepy condition of the scalp. It is also called the dry scalp.
  • Location: We find dandruff on the human items as combs, pins, towels, etc. You can find it on the scalp and over the shoulders or some times on the body.
  • Where to see? Dandruff is some small white or yellowish flakes and you see them easily on the hair and on the shoulders or clothing.

Causes Of Lice

  • Head to head contact.
  • Sharing personal items.
  • Improper hair wash.
  • Infested furniture.
  • Close contact with an infected person.

Causes Of Dandruff

  • Dry scalp.
  • Unclean skin conditions.
  • Stress.
  • Yeast affect.
  • Age factor.
  • The sensitivity of the skin.
  • A side effects of any hair product.

What Do Head Lice Look Like?

Lice are small wingless parasites. They are transparent or brown, but when they feed on blood, they become reddish-brown due to the color of the blood. If you see small bugs under the magnifying glass, you may have lice while lice eggs(nits) are leaf-shaped and stick to the hair shafts.

What Does Dandruff Look Like?

It is a chronic skin condition. Dandruff shed through the hair or on the shoulders. If you see some white or little yellowish flakes, you may have dandruff on your scalp. These are actually the dead skin cells that continuously shed from the skin.

How You Get Lice?

Lice can easily be transmitted through the head to head contact. Due to this reason, most children are affected to lice more than adults or elders. Children, when plays with others, their heads are close to each other, and an infested child can affect others. Sometimes they may share their personal items like combs, hairpins, hairbands, hats, etc. This can also be a reason to transmit lice to others.

You can read our detailed post here: Head Lice Infestation

How You Get Dandruff?

Dandruff can’t be transmitted to others because it’s not alive. So you should not be worried about its spread. It’s a dry skin condition. It’s noncontagious and can’t transmit from one another. It can come through the side effect of any chemical or unsuitable shampoo.  You can also get dandruff from any hormonal issue or stress. There could be any other reason for getting dandruff.

How To Get Rid Of Dandruff And Head Lice?

About their treatment, dandruff can be treated by the anti-dandruff shampoos or lotions which moisturize the skin. You can also remove dandruff by using some home remedies like oils to remove flakes or grease the scalp. It is also removed by regularly washing or brushing the hair. The use of any anti-fungal product can also remove these scales from the scalp.

Lice can be cured by many treatments like lice removal shampoos or remedies to apply them on the head like coconut oil or tea tree oil. You can easily find them by using lice combs and kill them by some medications also. Stress can also cause dandruff in some people, so stop or manage the stress can help you to reduce dandruff.

Some Careful Tips Of Both Infestations

  1. If you are suffering from lice infestation or have dandruff on your scalp, no need to panic or hyper when you see the circumstances, keep yourself calm, and find a better solution.
  2. If you’re applying any remedy, it doesn’t mean that it can never harm you. Some remedies are also toxic and can harm you seriously. Test before applying anything on your scalp because it’s too sensitive than your whole body. Apply it first on your hand in large amount as much as you have to apply for treatment. Wait for at least half an hour, if you don’t feel an allergic reaction or any kind of burning sensation, you can use it safely on your scalp then.
  3. Never use any kind of medication with the doctor’s advice. Let your doctor or any specialist know your case and use the medicine that he/she suggests to you.
  4. Be careful about the dosage of medication or even the ingredients required for any remedy. Take the right amount that’s suggested by an expert because they know the amount which is required to you for use.
  5. Never drink any kind of oil that you are using for treatment, whether it’s for lice or dandruff.
  6. Prevent your children or pets from any kind of medicine or oil. It could be dangerous if they eat or drink that. Take them away.

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