Head lice infestation (pediculosis) is a serious health problem that can cause a high level of anxiety and psychological frustration, especially in developing countries. Socio-demographic factors are important determinants of the occurrence of head lice infestation. This study aimed to determine the head lice infestations and the factors affecting the rate of infestation in primary school girls.
Materials and Methods
In this cross-sectional study, a total of 358 school girls from two urban and three rural primary school girls in Sirik County, Southern Iran, were randomly selected. For the diagnosis of head lice infestation, students were examined carefully by visual inspection of the scalp and hair for the presence of lice. Self-administered questionnaire was used to collect data on socio-demographic and associated factors of head lice infestation. SPSS version 21.0 was used to analyze the data.
The prevalence of head lice infestation among primary school girls was 56.15%. There were significant associations between head lice infestation and age (p<0.05), school grade (p= 0.045), family size (p=0.048), parents' literacy (p=0.001), father’s job (p<0.05), residential environments (p=0.014), and history of lice infestation in one family member (p=0. 001).
The head lice infestation is one of the major public health problems in primary school girls of Sirik County. It seems that improvement of socio-economic conditions and also health education programs about head lice infestation for primary school girls and their parents could significantly reduce the prevalence of head lice infestation in this area.