Head Lice Life Cycle

 

There are three stages in the life of a louse: the egg or nit, the nymph and the adult louse.

EGG/NIT

Lice eggs are called Nits. The female louse will lay eggs on any fibrous material or hair. The eggs are oval shaped, yellowish white in color and attached with a cement type glue to the hair shaft and are often mistaken for dandruff. An egg is laid at the base of the hair. They are usually near the scalp, about ¼” to ½” away. Eggs take 6 to 7 days to hatch.

 

NYMPH

Once the egg is hatched, the nymph which are clear in color start to feed on human blood almost immediately turning their color to a reddish brown. It takes 7 to 10 days for a nymph to develop into a full adult louse. Nymphs do not mate or lay eggs and are small in size.

 

LOUSE

A louse is an adult that can live up to 30 days on a human head and lay over 100 eggs in her lifetime, approximately up to 10 eggs per day. A full grown louse is about the size of a sesame seed. They are usually grayish brown in color.

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