Who knew? Lice can swim— or at least they can survive under water. For those of you whose children surf or swim in pools here in Hawaii this is important information!
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), studies “show that head lice can survive underwater for several hours but are unlikely to be spread by the water in a swimming pool.”
Head lice hold tightly onto the child’s (or adult’s) hair and essentially hold their breath when under water. Contrary to some people’s’ opinions, chlorine does not kill head lice.
It is also important to know that head lice can be spread when children share towels, washcloths and any other items that have been in contact with the hair of someone who had head lice. In addition to towels this applies to other bathing accessories like hairbrushes, combs, curlers, etc.
So bottom line – it’s a myth! It is highly unlikely that your child got ukus from the swimming pool.