Depending on the ant species involved, an ants in hair infestation can be quite frustrating. In some cases, ants can sting people and cause a condition known as ant-induced alopecia, which causes bald spots on the scalp. The best way to prevent this is to keep hair clean and avoid dandruff or strong-smelling shampoos that can attract ants.
Ants are attracted to hair due to its texture and warmth. It is also often located near food sources or nesting areas, such as furniture and floors. Ants that commonly infest hair include Pharaoh ants (Monomorium pharaonis), Argentine ants (Linepithema humile) and fire ants (Solenopsis tetragonidis).
Some ant species, such as pharaoh ants, have been known to chew on strands of human hair and can cause painful stings. While these ants are unlikely to start a nest inside the head, they can bite or suck on the scalp and leave marks that are very difficult to get rid of.
To help avoid an ant infestation, keep your hair clean and regularly wash it with soapy water or an all-purpose cleaner. You can also spritz a mixture of equal parts vinegar and water in a spray bottle to kill the ants and break down their pheromone trail, which will discourage other ants from following the trail. It’s also important to keep hair away from drains, as ants can build nests in them and clog the pipes. This can be done by removing hair from shower drains weekly or by using a shower trap.