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How to Treat Lice With Diatomaceous Earth

By Brock Cooper ; Updated July 27, 2017

Lice are a common household pest that can infest animals, people and homes. They feed on their hosts and spread a variety of diseases. Diatomaceous earth is a natural compound made up of microscopic fossilized creatures that have been ground up into a fine powder. Diatomaceous earth causes the insects to lose their outer coverings and dehydrate.

Wear proper attire. Diatomaceous earth can cause minor irritation of the nasal passageways and throat. You should wear a face mask to avoid inhaling the product. If you use it as a spray, then there is less chance of inhaling diatomaceous earth.

Spray or powder your animals. If you found lice on your household pet or livestock and want to get rid of them, then apply the powder generously to their coats. The diatomaceous earth can also be mixed with water and sprayed onto the animals. Spraying may be the best option, as the dust can irritate your pets' noses and throats as well. The powder can also be applied to humans as well.

Check for lice. After the diatomaceous earth has been applied to your animals or people, using a lice brush to comb through and remove the dead insects. You should repeat this process every few days until you no longer are removing dead lice with the comb.

Spray and powder your home. You should wash and spray down your bed and other areas where the lice may be found. When you have done that, go around your home spraying the interior furniture and any cracks or crevices where they could be hiding. Spray any places where your pets or livestock frequent, such as barns, dog beds, etc.

Take care of outside. With the inside of the house taken care of, you should go outside and spray the exterior base of the home with the diatomaceous earth. Spread the powder throughout your grass and flower beds. It will not only kill any lice but many other insects as well.

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