Essential head lice guide: How long does it take for nits to hatch

The idea of hair lice disappeared in modern times. But no, even life in the city can’t escape this tiny but scary little animal. There are many people who have to live with it year after year and cannot cure it completely. In this article, let’s get some insight about this problem such as what lice are, how long does it take for nits to hatch and how to end this problem. Stay calm and don’t miss this article.

What are lice?

Lice are tiny dandruff-like insects on the head, they live and grow by sucking a small amount of blood from the scalp, then lay eggs in the hair.Lice are easily spread on the body or clothes and cause dermatitis (redness, itching, swelling) which bring a lot of discomforts. The blood-sucking insects are multicolored, ranging from brown to reddish-brown and surprisingly, they just like to be friends with humans. Lice have no wings, so they cannot fly or jump from one head to the other, they can only crawl.

how long does it take for nits to hatch
How long does it take for a lice nit to hatch? (Source: Internet)

Lice live only in human hair and only “illegally immigrate” into the scalp to get blood. Therefore, they are not “alarming” by making you feel itchy at the early stage. Therefore, only when the lice have grown a lot on the head and can be seen easily, then you can notice and start to worry about their existence.

How long does it take for nits to hatch?

Lice will stick to the hair, about 1cm from the scalp, with an oval and small shape like a pin. They lay eggs at about 2.5cm from the scalp – this place is both soft and warm – suitable for hatching eggs. So, how long does it take for nits to hatch? Lice eggs will hatch within 7-10 days and female lice can lay 150-300 eggs so it is not surprising that in a short period of time a few lice can create “troops” a few hundred lice eggs

how long does it take for nits to hatch

After hatching, the white or yellow eggshell is still attached to the hair, “leaving” the scalp layer as the hair grows every day. As a result, the shells that are not attached to the hair are often found to be quite far from the scalp where the head lice are actually living. The baby lice are not much larger than the eggs and are usually light in color. 9-12 days later, they become mature, then match with other lice, female lice lay eggs and the cycle continues.

The lifespan of lice lasts about two months long. During that time, the female lice lay a lot of eggs but only about 50% of them can hatch. Also, depending on the blood and body temperature of each person, lice can be easier to grow in some people than others. Head lice can move from one’s head to another when the temperature is not appropriate. So that, the answer for the question of How long does it take for nits to hatch can also depend on each people, ranging from a week to about 11 days. Usually, girls are more prone to have more head lice than boys as their hair is longer.

Prevent the spread of lice

Once a person with lice has been identified, the best way to prevent the spread of lice is to remove the lice completely on the head. Moreover, limiting hair exposure to other people’s hair is also helping significantly to minimize the spread and penetration of lice to the new “host”.  You should also remember after reading the above part which is about How long does it take for nits to hatch, that lice egg can hatch in a quite short period of time. Therefore, it is recommended that you should put all efforts to end this problem as soon as possible.

Another cause (though less common) that leads to lice spread is the sharing of clothing and accessories such as hats, combs, and other hair accessories. People with head lice should avoid sharing a bed with siblings or friends. And a more contagious pathway is rarer: lice can “move” from one person to another through the bed or some contaminated furniture. And again, how long does it take for nits to hatch? Very soon after that, there will be more people who get into trouble with lice.




If a person is in the process of treating head lice, all items related to bed, bed sheets, carpets, combs, and any other items come in direct contact with human scalp and hair. lice need to be cleaned and used separately. Bedclothes and items need to be washed with hot water, combs and other hair accessories need to be boiled in order to remove bacteria, carpets or other non-washable items that can be dry cleaned and items that cannot be washed or dry-cleaned, should be left in a sealed container for several weeks to ensure that the lice cannot live and survive anymore.

Tips to prevent lice for you

When you or your family have problems with lice, you should apply some home remedies to help kill lice and their eggs.

The first thing you should do is to go to the drugstore to ask for liquid medicine to kill lice and their eggs. Then spread the medicine all over your baby’s head and leave the hair as it is for enough time according to the instructions, usually for many hours. However, when you choose to treat lice with chemicals, be sure to follow the instructions for use and consult a health care professional if you want to use this treatment for children under the age of 2. It is recommended that you make sure to read the instructions for use of medicines, including information on the time of medication administration, how to get the medicine, frequency of use, the age of use, and information about the chemical part and any side effects if any.

  • 8-hour spray medicine: Includes spray répulsif anti-poux, Phytorépulsif Actif … The drug usually contains repellent 3535 or DET
  • 10-30 minutes Lotion: Includes Pyréflor lotion, Parasidose lotion … Usage: Apply to dry hair 10-30 minutes before shampooing with lice shampoo.
  • If lice are found not resistant to conventional lice treatment drugs, it may be possible to use products containing lice kill drugs called pyrethrins or permethrin. ((DeAngelis, J. (n.d.). Permethrin and Pyrethrum Insecticides – What’s The Difference? Retrieved from However, these chemicals are considered to be toxic to humans and should be used with great care when used – according to the US Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry.

Instead of using medicine, you can apply the lice treatment for 5 minutes: Wash your hair with shampoo in order to drop the lice eggs which stick to the hairline. Then comb with a thick comb to remove the nits. You should wash your hair with a special shampoo which can help to kill the lice. These shampoos include Pyrlorlor Shampoing, Shampoing anti-poux, etc.

If your hair is long, you should first cut down your hair to make it easier to treat. Rub all shampoo on wet hair, let stand for 10 minutes. Rinse shampoo with cold water. Wash twice in 2 consecutive days, 8 days after shampooing for another time.

how long does it take for nits to hatch
How long does it take for nits to hatch? (Source: Internet)

Shampoo with tea tree oil

You can wash your hair daily with 15-20 drops of tea tree oil in shampoo and wash your hair as usual. Scrub your scalp carefully and comb through your hair with a comb to remove dead lice and eggs. However, you should also avoid having tea tree oil in contact with your eyes as it can cause a lot of eye irritation. It is recommended to wash your hair daily with this method, which will reduce and eliminate lice.

Wash your head with lemon

how long does it take for nits to hatch
Lemon juice can prevent the lice in hair (Source: Internet)

Shampooing with fresh lemon juice is also very effective. Because lemon also helps overcome dandruff and hair loss.

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