When a family member or child is scratching a scalp crawling with head lice, don’t panic or feel lousy. Avoid the home remedy advice on the Internet — dumping a jar of greasy mayonnaise on the victim’s head makes a big mess, is time-consuming and ineffective. Purchasing a toxic, over-the-counter brew at the drug store may have consequences later on. Pick up the phone instead. Nancy Fields and registered nurse MJ Eckert joined forces several years ago to found Lice Happens, a mobile lice removal service based in Annapolis. They handle the unexpected buggy problem with diplomacy, a gentle touch and quiet humor. “We are discreet and arrive in an unmarked vehicle,” said Nancy. “Head lice is incredibly disruptive,” added MJ. “We bring a family back to normalcy.”

The company’s specialists travel the east coast handling delousing cases. A typical in-home appointment is two hours. Usually, only one appointment is necessary. To remove nits — unhatched lice eggs — they use protease enzymes to loosen the glue holding nits to hair shafts. The application is followed by careful, manual combing to remove the dead lice bugs and nits. They don’t encourage massive, time-consuming house cleaning, vacuuming and bagging of bedding, clothing and toys. “Lice are human parasites. They like human heads, not a teddy bear or a hat,” said Nancy. “We demystify and de-stigmatize. There’s no need for blame or shame.”