How to Get EEG Gel Out of Hair

By Sara Gentry

In the case of epilepsy, fainting spells and sleep disorders, an EEG, or electroencephalogram, is used to measure brain wave activity. Before the test, a number of electrodes are glued to the patient's head. After the test, it can be difficult to remove with regular shampoo and shampooing techniques, but several home remedies exist to rid the hair of the gel-like substance. The test often is given to children, so the gentler procedures should be used on them. (See References 1)

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After an EEG, washing the gel glue out of your child's hair can be a pain, but it's not impossible.

Step 1

Before an EEG, wash the patient's hair with shampoo only; no conditioner or cream rinse should be used. In addition, don't apply any hair spray, oil or other products to the hair and don't style it with braids or ponytails. (See References 2)

Step 2

After the test, especially with children, the nurse or administrator might use warm water or a solution to remove the electrodes and as much of the glue as possible. If this does not rid the hair of all the adhesive, wash it immediately after returning home. (See References 2)

Step 3

If the glue still resists removal, the patient or parent can use acetone nail polish remover, collodion remover (a solvent gentler than acetone available at theatrical supply stores to remove skin adhesives), isopropyl myristate (head lice treatment) or tea tree oil to wash it out of hair. Acetone, which can be harsh to the skin, should be used with cotton swabs as sparingly as possible. Pure tea tree oil can also cause a burning sensation, but it can be bought in diluted forms or in creams and hair conditioners and treatments. (See References 3)

Step 4

A more homemade approach can be taken with a mixture of five to seven aspirin, crushed and dissolved in a half cup of hot water, two squirts of shampoo and four tablespoons of witch hazel or Seabreeze astringent. Massage the solution into wet hair and it sit for 15 or 20 minutes. Avoid any contact with the eyes. Then comb the hair and shampoo and condition. Repeat if necessary. This approach isn't recommended for kids under 10. (See References 4)