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Thread: What are these?? DEC plugs, hair casts or nits... Help my hair!

  1. #1

    Default What are these?? DEC plugs, hair casts or nits... Help my hair!

    This is a bit embarrassing for a newbie... but Iīve looked in the search function and havnīt been able to find anything. I have long curly bushy thick hair... please help!

    About 3 months ago I had a lice scare. I saw these light balls attached to my hair near the ends and freaked out and washed my hair out with lice shampoo. The funny thing is that I didn't see *a single louse* when I showered. Nothing. Besides, my hair doesnīt itch, and the bumps where near the ends. My hair in general is scraggly and dry, with split ends... but its shiny. Except where there are these spots. I started doing the conditioner only cleansing, now Iīm shampooing about once a week and only near the scalp. I also use leave in combing cream and linseed-honey hair gel (purchased)

    I remember when I was a child and had lice, that I could actually see the lice, and the nits were something I could pull out of the hair and pop between the nails. This time, however, the bumps refuse to budge from the shaft, even if I get the hair strand individually with my nails. Looked up close, they are more or less colored the same as the rest of my hair, but not well enough to not be seen.

    They are also not anywhere near my scalp, they are located at about 6 inches from my scalp all the way to my ends.

    I searched online and found this:
    http://www.headlice.org/faq/notnit.htm

    It could be that I have DEC plugs... it does match with the symptoms... however, I havenīt been able to find ANYTHING about removing or getting rid of them.

    They are also very difficult to photograph, but I wanted to show you guys how they look.


    The pictures is bit and I apologize... For the picture I used a magnifying glass and macro setting on my camera over my hair and took a picture of that, the bumps can be seen around the light bulb's reflection. They look like beads and specks.


    Please, please help. Has anyone had this? Am I just being delusional and they are nits? Will I have to cut off my 27 inch long hair? What on earth is going on with my hair?


  2. #2
    night owl Flaxen's Avatar
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    Don't worry. Even if you did have lice, you wouldn't have to cut your hair off. But you don't have lice. You say you shampoo near the scalp and the spots start about 6 inches away? And basically, the hair from there down gets nothing but conditioner and linseed gel?

    I'll bet you can guess what I'm going to say next. You've got build-up. Shampoo from scalp to ends, and your hair will be fine.

  3. #3
    Member Riot Crrl's Avatar
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    I can't tell much of what is going on in this photo, except for what looks like a knot going on, at the far right, 25% of the way from the top.

    Let's talk about the light colored balls. Can you find one? Hold the strand above it and pull on the end. Does it snap with minimal pressure right where the ball was? That's just a weak spot and the start of breakage. You do not have to cut all your hair, but it could be good to search and destroy these that you can find with sharp scissors. Otherwise, they'll break eventually, and then the broken ends will probably split.
    Battle Wench Arvoreen of the Scything Curls in the Order of the Long Haired Knights

  4. #4
    Member joyinc's Avatar
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    i was just about to say buildup before i saw flaxen's post!

    i get that a lot, i notice them on my comb, expecially when i've got a lot of crap in my hair

  5. #5
    Member camillacamilla's Avatar
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    Way back in the day when I used a lot of styling product ( think the 80s), I would get build up on the ends of my hair like you describe. Maybe try a good clarifying shampoo- maybe the CO wash isn't enough to get your styling products out of your hair.

  6. #6

    Default

    Thanks for all the feedback.

    Yesterday I stayed online researching, and I found the scariest thing. I have to get an appointment with my doctor because what I have on my hair seems to be "piedra".

    I thought it was just something my mom would scare me with as a child, when I didnīt like to have my hair down.

    http://www.emedicine.com/derm/byname/Piedra.htm

    http://www.doctorfungus.org/mycoses/...her/piedra.htm

    it seems to fit the symptoms perfectly. Sadly, it seems that treatment with antifungal medication isn't that well researched and the other option is just to "cut off the hair".

    Iīll keep you guys posted.

  7. #7
    Hiding in plain sight spidermom's Avatar
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    Take a deep breath. Try not to assume the worst. Good luck getting this sorted out.

  8. #8
    One-Handed Typist, NAK birdiefu's Avatar
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    There was a lady on LHC over a year ago (sorry, don't remember who, just remember the thread) who had this same issue and thought she had piedra. Turned out she just needed a lot of clarifying from only COing for years, but I can see how scary that can be to see that on your hair!

    ETA: The other member's (CurlyLigeia) threads were from 2004. If you search the archives, you can check them out. She had a huge runaround with some dermatologists as she tried to figure out what was going on with her hair.
    Last edited by birdiefu; May 5th, 2008 at 10:10 AM.

    From BSL to Classic in 4 years, thanks LHC!
    Waiting for DH to come home safe from Iraq around May '10

  9. #9
    Member akurah's Avatar
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    Little white dots often (but aren't always) where your hair shaft has been burst or shattered from damage. I get them a lot, and a hallmark trait of them is that your hair is able to bend at a 90 degre angle where the little dot is.

    Check and see if you can do the above with those little dots before you upset yourself about this further.
    Lady Nemetona of the Blessed Circle in the Order of the Long Haired Knights

  10. #10
    Hiding in plain sight spidermom's Avatar
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    Try shampooing your entire length with a clarifying shampoo. Comb the conditioner through. Then look at your hair. You will probably find that the white bumps that are left represent damage, and your hair will pop apart easily when you pull on either side of them. These nodes occur very commonly with split ends.

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