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Don’t Put Kerosene On Your Hair

Q. I read your suggestions for the treatment of head lice. Why doesn't anyone ever mention the remedy that really works and works fast? Kerosene.

Comb it through the hair for about five minutes. It kills the lice and removes the nits, and the child can return to school the next day.

A. Although kerosene was an old-fashioned remedy for getting rid of lice, it should never be used. The manufacturer’s safety recommendations specifically warn against contact with eyes, skin and clothes.

Absorption of petroleum byproducts through the skin is potentially dangerous. Kerosene can also irritate the skin and lungs. Far worse, a spark could trigger a horrendous accident leading to severe burns or death. Anyone who would like to learn about safer lice remedies can find them on this Website.

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About the Author
Joe Graedon is a pharmacologist who has dedicated his career to making drug information understandable to consumers. His best-selling book, The People’s Pharmacy, was published in 1976 and led to a syndicated newspaper column, syndicated public radio show and web site. In 2006, Long Island University awarded him an honorary doctorate as “one of the country's leading drug experts for the consumer.”.
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