Recently, it’s been all over the news that there are resistant, mutant strains of lice found in 25 states. As if lice wasn’t already a problem, these new strains don’t respond to most over the counter treatments.
The reason lice, and other insects, are increasingly becoming resistant, is because the active ingredients in most OTC concoctions is pyrethroids, which are synthetic versions of a chemical found in chrysanthemums, and which lock onto receptors in insect nervous systems, then paralyzes the bugs and eventually kills them.
Kyong Yoon, an assistant professor at Southern Illinois University—Edwardsvillle. Yoon was part of the research team that initially discovered the new ultra-resistant strains,who says that lice have evolved in such a way that the chemicals no longer fit neatly into the receptors, thereby crushing the chemical’s combative ability.
His most recent study which is all over the news, was to find out how widespread these resistant strains were.
“We collected 109 lice populations and 104 had high levels of gene mutations,” Yoon reported at the annual meeting of the American Chemical Society.
The chart below, published in Today, shows prevalence by state.
Yoon says that the finding doesn’t mean you can’t kill lice with pyrethroids. But you will need a higher dose.
-The Chai Mommas