Life Cycle of Lice – when did my head lice infestation start?

Many of our customers wonder when the infestation started or want to know whether they caught in on time or not. Although it’s very hard to be 100% precise with the answers, the life cycle of adult lice helps us get an estimate as to when and how an infestation will develop.

All infestations start when a female louse crawls to the hair and lays a nit (egg). About a week (8-10days) after that egg is laid, it will hatch and a new louse – nymph – will emerge. Nymphs cannot reproduce and take three molts to reach the adult stage.The size of a nymphs compares to George Washington’s eye on a $1 bill. Once a nymph has reached the third molt it becomes an adult and can reproduce. It takes about 7-10 days for a nymph to reach the adult stage.

There are other facts that will help you understand head lice infestations. Female lice can lay up to 10 eggs per day! A female louse only needs to mate once and can continue to lay viable nits for the duration of her life.

If you suspect you have lice, it is important to take care of it professionally. Over the counter products don’t work for the nits that have to be removed manually one by one, missing one will result on them hatching and re-infesting the head all over again.At Lice Clinics of America San Diego we offer highly professional head lice removal treatments. We use the medical FDA-cleared AirAlle device that dehydrates nits and lice in just one hour. Remove lice quickly and safely.