Got Bed Bugs? Bedbugger Forums » Bed bug bites, skin, etc.

what should you wash your hair with?

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  1. pinkchiffon

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Sat Nov 8 2008 4:51:20
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    i know they aren't supposed to like hair, but for me that just isn't the case. i have sores all over my scalp because of all the itching, i always feel like somethings crawling around in there and i wash my hair every morning if i'm planning to leave. i wish i could pour alcohol over my head but that would kill my scalp, what would someone recommend i wash my hair with to get them out/kill any that may not come out in the water??

  2. bitten123

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Sat Nov 8 2008 12:43:28
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    pink, are you sure the bites on your head are from bbugs? that would be v ery very unusual. This is only a suggestion, but when my one child was very scared and bitten up by the bugs, I used to use a tea tree bar soap and wash her hair in tea tree shampoo. Her doctor told me this was fine. The tea tree shampoo was found at Walmart or Target, and I believe it was Paul Mitchell Tea Tree but we bought the generic store brand one with tea tree.

    The tea tree seemed to help her bites so much! Maybe that will help..

  3. Adele

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Sat Nov 8 2008 14:46:28
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    I had EXACTLY the same problem. They seemed to love my hair and bite my scap and the skin next to my hair - I think they hid in my hair and then carlwed out to bit - EWWWWW>

    The only way I had any relief was to constantly pour 91% alcohol with a thin spray bottle into my hair my

    I have very long thick hair so it was able to tolerate the alcohol without damage

    But I did that 5 or 6 time - once a day for a week and washed my hair after each time - they went away

    if your hair can tolerate alcohol then that worked for me

  4. Bugged_in_MD

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Sat Nov 8 2008 16:24:08
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    I bought a bottle of hair dye that was as close as possible to my hair color and dyed it. It stopped the itch. I don't know if something was in my hair or if i was just going crazy.

  5. Adele

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Mon Nov 10 2008 21:57:24
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    Hatesbedbugs - thank you for your concern and posting. I read up on Morgellons and I do not have those symptoms - simply - put I had bedbugs in my hair

    however unusual that may be my hair is very long and thick and I had bites along my hairline on my face

  6. thebedbugresource

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Mon Nov 10 2008 22:15:58
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    I would absolutely NOT follow any advice on this thread without consulting a physician.

    When you get people that state to use A or B or whatever on one's skin you run the risk of causing someone harm.

    May I also point out that you can be held legally liable should someone follow your advice and harm themselves.

    Please seek out a professional's opinion.

    Sincerely,

    Sean
    Entomologist/Pest Professional
    http://www.thebedbugresource.com

  7. Adele

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Mon Nov 10 2008 22:27:34
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    SEan - I only related what I found to be helpful to me - I am in no way giving anyone advice in fact I said that

    with all due respect to you - i did not need to go to a Dr - I needed to get rid of my bedbugs as I never had that problem before and have not had it since

  8. Adele

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Mon Nov 10 2008 22:28:46
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    Sean - I also want to point out that people offer advice here all the time - folks can take it or not as they wish

    going to a dr is good advice but I KNEW my probelm stemmed from bedbugs

  9. bitten123

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Mon Nov 10 2008 23:10:40
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    Sean, I'm kind of surprised at your response. I specifically stated what I used on my child, with the approval of her doctor. Now this is an over the counter, regular shampoo, I have used the Paul Mitchel version and a generic version. I used it long before bedbugs and I like the shampoo. I never thought I could be held liable for recommending an over the counter shampoo, I would think that if Paul Mitchell's shampoo caused someone harm, then the manufacturer of said product would be liable, not a happy customer. What about other people on Amazon who review other hair care products and recommend them?

    We often mention things on this site here that helped, but I was not suggesting someone make their own concoction for their hair.

    Anyway, I usually add a disclaimer to use professionals... And seeing a doctor is always best obviously. I agree with that.
    sorry if I stepped on any toes...

  10. Adele

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Mon Nov 10 2008 23:42:31
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    Bitten - I would not worry about Sean's response - our postings are no different than the postings that other people make on where and how to place DE powder around ones' home

    suppose a person was allergic to DE and had an asthma attack or was hurt by accidently inhaling it - that is exactly the same scenario

    neither you nor I were giving advice as professionsla and we were simply relating what worked for us - there is no more liability with what we posted then the DE postings that we've seen so much of

    A person can listen to what worked for us or not as they wish - it does not mean they have to do what we did

    there is no liability there

    this forum is about a free exchange of ideas and I think Sean's posting was a bit unusual - I could say somehting else but I have a great deal of respsect and admiration for Sean and don't want to go there

  11. thebedbugresource

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Tue Nov 11 2008 0:36:15
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    My post was not meant as malicious to anyone. I was merely pointing out that when it comes to applying a product to one's self you ought to be extra cautious.

    To be honest I made my post in hopes of stopping this discussion before someone did recommend something that was dangerous. I was merely trying to help prevent an injury. Perhaps I stepped my bounds.

    You are correct. This is a forum of free speech.

    But make no mistake about it, you can be held legally liable for offering advice (I have looked into this at length). As an aside, the host of this site can also be sued for content that leads to harm (whether it is authored by her or not). This is why you will always see me be extra cautious in choosing my wording. You will never find me recommending medical products for itch relief (I get asked this lots), products to apply to one's self to deter bed bugs, or anything else that I feel is beyond my expertise or can be dangerous to a person's health.

    If bed bugs are living in your hair a physician would be able to see them and would be able to make a recommendation of something safe to use. It is my opinion that this is the safest approach.

    Sincerely,

    Sean
    Entomologist/Pest Professional
    http://www.thebedbugresource.com

  12. Adele

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Tue Nov 11 2008 0:41:05
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    Thank you Sean

    I do not have them in my hair and was merely relating what helped me - as you know there is a fine line to offering advice - particularly as it relates to common over the counter and readily available products

    but thank you for sharing your input it is always welcome - from me anyway

  13. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Tue Nov 11 2008 14:35:11
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    I agree with Sean on this one.

    Bed bugs do not live in hair under most circumstances. The exception we have heard (correct me if I am wrong) is for hairstyles that do not get washed except occasionally (once a week, etc.) A few people with extensions have mentioned this, as an example.

    If you are washing your hair regularly, any shampoo and normal water should do it.

    If you have a hairstyle that is not washed several times a week, or if you think bed bugs are living in your hair despite it being washed daily, you probably should get a doctor to have a look and give you advice.

    Sean is also correct that people may try and sue if they think you've given bad advice (or if you have said something untrue that may be classed as libelous or slanderous).

    My understanding (and I am not a lawyer) is that individuals are held responsible for what they write on public forums, and this is reflected in the Terms of Service. I don't take responsibility for your comments, you do; but I reserve the right to remove them.

    I started and run the site but am "not an expert."
  14. bitten123

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Tue Nov 11 2008 15:54:48
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    Again, I understand that people can sue over anything, I suppose we all need to be very cautious and/or add disclaimers to everything. I would never want to injure anyone, and Sean you are very appreciated on this board. You really give sound advice, your point is well taken.

  15. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Tue Nov 11 2008 18:12:39
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    bitten123,

    There's also a warning in the Terms and Conditions of the site that just because someone recommends something here, doesn't mean it is a good idea.

    I won't go into some of the things people have recommended on the forums, some of it is really crazy, and I don't think anyone is lumping this into that pile. Certainly not the recommendation to use shampoo.

  16. Adele

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Tue Nov 11 2008 18:24:07
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    Nobugs - it is not my intention to recommend anything crazy or intentially harmful - but I had hair extensions that became very infested. Once I removed the extensions THE ONLY WAY for me to get rid of them out of my natural hair was to repeatedly rinse with alcohol and wash and blow dry with a VERY hot dryer

    I had to do this 5 or 6 times over the course of several weeks. they did not appear to go away with just regular shampoo.

    That is my experience and my result. end of story. I am only relating my experience and nothing more

    I have no desire to get into this issue any more than what has already been discussed but I did speak to my lawyer and becasue alcohol is a common over the counter product and actaully is present in many hair products - my posting would not represent any legal liability to me whatsoever.

    Just thought you should know that I did my homework too

    I will not post on this issue anymore

  17. cilecto

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Tue Nov 11 2008 20:18:51
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    pinkchiffon - 3 days ago  » ...i have sores all over my scalp because of all the itching...what would someone recommend?

    1. I do think you should see a derm, as this may not be caused by the bugs, per se, but is co-incidental with your infestation.

    2. If Murphy soap and mineral oil are contact killers, how about soaking your hair in either? They're both relatively gentle.

    3. For itching itself, I'd suggest something with tea tree, menthol, zinc, coal tar or plain old calamine/benadryl.

    4. For general feeling better, that stuff they advertised in the '90s where the user made like Meg Ryan in "Where Harry Met Sally", or anything by L'Oreal, 'cuz you're worth it.

    Ci

    Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night...
    - Psalms 91:5-7

    (Not an pro)
  18. thebedbugresource

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Tue Nov 11 2008 20:52:43
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    Adele,

    I think that you are starting to take this personally. Nowhere has anyone said that your approach was dangerous or that you did anything wrong.

    All I (and nobugs) have tried to do is warn people that what they read on the forums is not always the best advice. I posted a warning hoping to prevent anything dangerous from being posted and then utilized by a reader. Period.

    In my years of trolling forums and message boards I have seen everything from people telling others to bathe in kerosene to drinking small amounts of arsenic. Believe me such a warning is warranted.

    As an aside, if McDonald's can get sued for 2.86 million dollars (and lose) because their coffee was too hot anything is possible ...

    Sincerely,

    Sean
    Entomologist/Pest Professional
    http://www.thebedbugresource.com

  19. Adele

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Tue Nov 11 2008 21:01:59
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    duly noted, Sean

    thank you

    'nuff said, wouldn't you agree?

  20. Newbeebugger

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Tue Nov 11 2008 23:16:16
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    You all have the best of intensions. We all want to help others and I undersatnd both sides of the bed bug fence. I will say that I too was bitten frequently on my head and I itch till this day bites I received on my head over a month ago. I have not been bitten in about 2 weeks but I found the head bites of particular distress....I don't know why I did considering the other places I've read on this forum our fellow posters being bitten. It seems considerable to me that bed bugs will bite one's head as it is the closest place to your headboard. My very first bites were on my legs and arms but once they found my headboard they loved my head....and I do have hair too.....thank God for small blessings. Peace my friends you all have good hearts.

    Newbeebugger

  21. cilecto

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Tue Nov 11 2008 23:45:00
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    Just to clear things up for all of us... Do BBs typically not "feed" in hairy areas or do they typically not "live" there?

  22. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Nov 12 2008 0:35:20
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    cilecto - 4 hours ago  » 
    2. If Murphy soap and mineral oil are contact killers, how about soaking your hair in either? They're both relatively gentle.

    Well, I don't think that's a good idea either.

    Adele, you sound pretty angry at me. My post was not an attack on you.

    There are reasons someone might see a doctor in pinkchiffon's case-- other possible causes of these symptoms. No one was saying YOU should see a doctor, rather, we were responding to pinkchiffon.

  23. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Nov 12 2008 0:42:19
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    cilecto - 54 minutes ago  » 
    Just to clear things up for all of us... Do BBs typically not "feed" in hairy areas or do they typically not "live" there?

    We've been told they typically do not feed on heads full of hair, though some have noted this happened in their cases.

    As for "living" there-- they should not be living there if you wash your hair regularly. But with some hairstyles, washing is an infrequent thing.

  24. Adele

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Nov 12 2008 0:42:30
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    No Nobugs not angry at anyone - and I am sorry that you think so

    I am just sorry I answered this posting that's all.

    I won't answer anymore related to hair. Having those things in my hair extensions was by far the most traumatic part of my infestation. Once the extensions came off, the alcohol rinses helped me to rid them out of my natural hair but I do see yours and Sean's point that not everyone can tolerate it and alcohol can have very strong fumes and can be damaging to hair

    it helped me that's all - I would prefer to not prolong this point and I won't answer those posting again related to hair

  25. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Nov 12 2008 0:45:24
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    Adele,

    That would be a shame.

    I am not trying to get you to censor yourself. You should certainly feel free to describe your experiences.

    I think this is all a storm in a teacup.

  26. Adele

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Nov 12 2008 0:48:46
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    Thank you Nobugs - storm in a teacup indeed, I like that one!!

  27. IveBeenBugged

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Nov 12 2008 9:12:16
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    I use the Paul Mitchell Tea Tree Shampoo (not for BB's but in general). BB's are not supposed to like the tea tree oil in it. It contains more tea tree oil than some of the bogus sprays (Thrawt) that are on the market for the control of BB's. I get mine from the guy who cuts my hair.

    There is also a Dr. Bronner's liquid tea tree soap that can be used on either hair or the body that you can get at Target. It's not by the regular soaps though it's in cosmetic's for some reason. I use the Almond version myself. Once again not for BB's.

    They can and will bite you in hairy locations on your body (my ass for one - trust me it's hairy) and while I was bitten in hairy (furry?) areas (the armpits where another favorite location) I was never bitten on my head (along the hairline yes but in the hair no). That doesn't mean it can't happen it just never happened with me

    I do think you should see a doctor though as it may be something else besides BB's. Nerves, a reaction to any chemicals used for BB control that have been used or perhaps something else entirely. It's better to rule all other things out along the way. There also may be something that a doctor can prescribe that none of us have either thought of or have the knowledge of that a doctor may know of.

    Both of the products I mentioned are safe for body and/or hair washing as that is what they were made for. Whether they would work or not is something I do not know.

    I still think a visit to your doctor or a dermatologist is your best bet. Please inform them of you BB problem as the bites look like many other types of bite reactions or skin reactions and if you do not mention the BB's they could very well misdiagnose you and prescribe something that may not work for BB's.

  28. IveBeenBugged

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Nov 12 2008 9:18:40
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    Both of the products I mentioned are safe for body and/or hair washing as that is what they were made for. Whether they would work or not is something I do not know.

    Sorry I meant to say - Whether they would work on BB's or not is something I do not know.

  29. Newbeebugger

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Nov 12 2008 21:46:12
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    Yes....bathing is very important people. I have a bit of OCD where things can't be clean enough, including myself....so if I got them anyone could. I have always been like Felix from the odd couple. Some of my friends actually have fun on the weekends....I always felt better when everything was squeeky clean so I'd stay home and wash, polish, dust, vacuume etc....but now I'm crazy insane because I have residules everywhere and me and my Mr. Clean bottles are trying to cope with the new policies and proceedures. For the record I have always showered 2x's a day...but now with bb's I'll shower up to 3. I'm beginning to look like a prune. And in regards to the things I've shampooed with and or put in my hair...well Adele, I would have been censored had I posted. They just liked to bite my head. Those horrible bugs don't fight fair. Peace gang

  30. Adele

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Wed Nov 12 2008 21:48:26
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    I'm not commenting on this subject anymore, cant we just let this thread die?

  31. Bitandrun @UofT

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    Fri Jan 23 2009 5:58:23
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    Not until I get this in.

    I think it's worth considering that another critter, such as lice, may be the culprit in this scenario. They cause intense itching, and would be much more resistant to the simple wash than bedbugs, who do not have the small size or special legs that allow lice to cling on.

    Also, bedbugs tend to search for the right place to feast before they bite down, so it's unlikely that the BBs would pass up a whole plain (on their scale) of easily accessible blood just so they could try to find some in the hair forest. It doesn't make sense.

  32. bugbasher

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    Posted 5 years ago
    Mon Jan 26 2009 22:33:09
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    HAVING PULLED A FEW OF THEM FROM MY HAIR (WHICH IS NOT LONG BUT IS FULL) I KNOW FOR A FACT THAT THEY WILL BITE THE HEAD. I SURMISED THE REASON IS THAT THEY WERE HUNGRY AND WERE HARBORED AT THE HEAD OF THE BED,HENCE THE HEAD WAS THE FIRST PLACE TO BITE AND THEY DID.NOW ONCE YOU'RE A FULLY SATED BB MANUEVERING THAT BULK GETS TRICKY WITH THE HAIR TO TRY AND CRAWL THROUGH SO YOU GET DISCOVERED.I ALWAYS JUST WASHED MY HAIR WITH HOT AS I COULD STAND WATER AND CALLED IT A DAY. DISCLAIMER- I AM NOT NOR HAVE I EVER BEEN A BB,I'M JUST GUESSING HERE.

  33. Beth

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    Tue Aug 3 2010 11:56:33
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    bedbugs have bitten my scalp. it began to happen after I got my hair cut. they really will bite anywhere that suits them. the base of the neck seems particularly tasty for them.

    when I was getting bitten on my head (this was before I encased my pillow), my hair, yes, did become straight. it was very weird, the curl went away. not sure what to do about that but get them out of your hair.

    My head still itches at times. the more bites on my body I get the more apt I am for my head to begin itching. Showering seems to mitigate this to completely tolerable. One week , perhaps after treatment, I may shower twice daily every day just to purge the suckers from hanging out anywhere on my body. I would never douse my head in alcohol.

    peace-
    Amy

  34. cilecto

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    Posted 4 years ago
    Tue Aug 3 2010 12:34:48
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    @beth: Ento Dini Miller has indicated that BB generally do not hang out/bite in hair (can't navigate or get a grip to feed). I'd look to an OTC or Rx anti itch for relief. Some of the "designer" herbal BB sprays have the same ingredient as shampoo - sodium lauryl sulfate. I'm guessing that any shampoo will wash out BB (not eggs), if not kill them.

    @spammer Steve. I doubt that most people experiencing BB care if their hair is straight or curly.

  35. buggyinsocal

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    Tue Aug 3 2010 13:19:48
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    I have no idea what Steve is getting at, but I did want to say this for people who don't know:

    curly hair, and maintaing it, is very different from straight hair.

    Because of the texture of our hair (and let's be clear, there are a lot of different textures covered under curly hair--everything from wavy hair to really tight curls that shrink to 75% of their length when curled), people with curly hair use very different products and treat our hair very differently than people with straight hair do. I suspect that most people with straight hair don't know this because it takes those of us with curly hair a long time to find stylists who can handle curly hair; this fact suggests to me that the schools that train stylists aren't really giving even stylists much training on curly hair, which means that I really don't expect people whose living is made on hair to know this.

    Many curly-haired folks don't wash our hair more often than once a week or once a month. When we do wash our hair, our shampoos need to be much milder than most shampoos. A lot of us use no lather shampoos, shampoo bars that also don't lather much, and/or conditioner mixed with baking soda to clean our scalps as most shampoos--even those available in salons--are much too drying and will damage our hair.

    (Incidentally, straight-haired people might not have noticed this, but curly-haired people can't really brush our hair once it's dry. I know this baffled a lot of straight haired people I know. I comb my hair in the shower when it's loaded with conditioner, and that's it. A comb won't come near it again for the rest of the day. Girls in my gym classes in middle school were stunned by this. It broke their brains to think that I got to brush my hair once a day, and even after running around on the field, I couldn't really brush it again. Brushing dry curly hair makes it frizz like whoa. Curly hair is also often much more prone to breaking, so doing things like brushing too often can damage our hair. If I need to "arrange" my hair into behaving, I will wet my hands and put a little water on the top to smooth things down, but without product, that will only make it frizzier in the long run.)

    Some of us with curly hair keep our hair in styles that means it only gets combed out every few weeks. Think locs and braids. (I don't keep my hair in those styles because, well, I don't think it's appropriate for me as a white woman to be wandering around with locs, even though my hair has more texture than many white folks' hair, and my hair would loc without resorting to a lot of the tricks that people with hair with less texture use to get locs.

    Honestly, knowing what I know now, if I were ever going into the wilderness for a long backpacking trip again or headed out to sea on a sailboat for weeks, I would go and get my hair braided in advance because it's the only practical way to deal with my hair when I can't maintain the normal schedule of washing and conditioning. Having it braided would keep it out of my face and untangled. Pulling curly hair into pony tails or big braids like a French braid doesn't make it behave; because it is curly, it just snakes right out and springs free. And unlike straight hair, bushing or combing it to get it to behave only makes matters worse. My hair would also very definitely stay in braids longer than the three days at the most that most people with straight hair would get; it has plenty of texture and curl. I'd just need a lot of sunscreen for my scalp.)

    If people want to know more about curly hair, a good starting place to go online is Naturallycurly.com. I have some issues with how they phrase things (esp. around race), but it is a site that has a good overview of products, stylists, and the special needs of curly hair. (I'm a 3b on their curl type analysis.)

    As a result, I can see people worrying about this, but it's important to remember that unlike lice or fleas, bed bugs don't live on their hosts. I think the only examples of bugs in hair I've seen on the boards turned out to be a pest other than bed bugs or bed bugs in extensions or other hair pieces.

    My guess is that whatever your usual routine for hair care is, if you're systematically treating the bed bugs in the home and you inspect your hair by combing it all out carefully once after you discover the bed bugs and once when you're sure you're clear, you should be okay--even those of us who don't wash our hair as often as other folks.

  36. Beth

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    Posted 4 years ago
    Tue Aug 3 2010 14:02:21
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    yes I don't think bedbugs live on hair, maybe one might hichike a while, but they don't take up nest unless like Adele's situation there is a hairstyle that invites it. i can imagine dreds, weaves, cornrows, etc.

    but they do bite the scalp. I have very short, boy short hair. My hair is not a deterrent for them. When my hair was longer, they did not bite my scalp.

    lol at the spammer

    peace-
    Amy

  37. Eve

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    Posted 4 years ago
    Tue Aug 3 2010 14:36:07
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    @buggyinsocal > Thank you very much for your post. It is a great relief to me because I have very fine straight hair that gets washed every couple of days or so (more frequently would make it disappear altogether). It's a relief that this is not territory.

    Last night, I picked a feeding nymph out of the inside perimeter of my hairline and for a crazy moment I worried about them setting up house. It makes no sense from all the reading I've done that this could possibly be. And I know it was a BB because I found it shortly after where I threw it in my panic (spritz of alcohol while on the bed did for it). Upon squeezing in its tape prison, it exploded.

    My hair causes me a lot of panic during my infestation because being very light (invisible as single strands) it floats over my face. And hair that has fallen out will waft across my skin at night. Unfortunately, the logical/scientific part of my brain which can cope with this has to shut up in order for me to sleep.

    But during the day I know that it is unlikely that anything is happening in my hair that shouldn't be (aside from it falling out of course).

    I have some new Protect-a-Bed pillow protectors which I may put on at least the sleeping pillow because I don't trust the cover I have now.

    Eve

  38. cilecto

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    Posted 4 years ago
    Tue Aug 3 2010 21:32:14
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    I can't believe that I wrote this

    cilecto - 1 year ago  » 

    pinkchiffon - 3 days ago  » ...i have sores all over my scalp because of all the itching...what would someone recommend?

    1. I do think you should see a derm, as this may not be caused by the bugs, per se, but is co-incidental with your infestation.
    2. If Murphy soap and mineral oil are contact killers, how about soaking your hair in either? They're both relatively gentle.
    3. For itching itself, I'd suggest something with tea tree, menthol, zinc, coal tar or plain old calamine/benadryl.
    4. For general feeling better, that stuff they advertised in the '90s where the user made like Meg Ryan in "Where Harry Met Sally", or anything by L'Oreal, 'cuz you're worth it.
    Ci

  39. acgogo57

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    Posted 4 years ago
    Tue Aug 3 2010 23:20:11
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    I have very short but thick hair and the bed bugs attack it and my mildly hairy chest. It's my understanding that they go anywhere where your veins or capiliaries are close to the surface of the skin. Like, I've had bites on my wrist and on the thick veins that run above my nose into my scalp. If you keep the areas very clean and dry you will win half the battle. Using a skin cream with alph hydroxy is a deterrent. And - I don't care what anyone says - a light wipe of Repel %40 or 100% DEET will help with your other deterrents.


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