In an effort to de-mystify and de-stigmatize the common childhood experience with head lice, the experts at Annapolis-based Lice Happens are hitting the road to educate parents, teachers and health care providers about the transmission, treatment and prevention of Pediculus humanus capitis, the human head louse. Outbreaks of head lice in Northern Virginia and Baltimore County prompted Mary Jane Eckert, RN, and Nancy Fields, the co-founders of Lice Happens™ to develop a 30-minute educational presentation that they will bring to area schools, PTA groups, and community organizations who are interested in proactively approaching the topic, whether or not an infestation has affected their community recently. The programs are given by trained lice specialists, are free of charge, and contain scientific information and practical advice presented with a gentle sense of humor.
“It’s just as important to stop the spread of misinformation about head lice as it is to stop transmission of the disease,” said M.J. Eckert, RN. “We’ve encountered so much anxiety in our day-to-day treatment of families struggling with infestations that could be prevented or mitigated by a bit more knowledge and a bit less folklore.” Lice Happens co-founder Nancy Fields adds, “We want to empower parents, teachers and other child care providers to deal effectively with head lice. So many of our clients feel helpless when faced with the kinds of persistent infestations we’ve been encountering lately. The cycle of infestation can be broken with a few simple steps, but unfortunately those steps are time-consuming. People are looking for a quick fix, and they often turn to folk remedies or chemical treatments which don’t work, and end up taking away precious time that could be used to eradicate the lice sooner.”
At a recent session at Wolftrap Elementary School, parents shared their often frustrating experiences dealing with the problem on their own, expressed concerns about how lice are transmitted, and asked about specific methods of treatment and prevention. Dr. Anita Blain, Wolftrap Elementary School principal, said, “Nancy Fields presented the kind of information we needed parents to hear. She gave us practical tips on how to allow children to have normal social interaction without anxiety about head lice. Our parents left the meeting with confidence that head lice can be treated effectively in the school community if adults are diligent about screening their children.” Polly Colwell, Wolftrap PTA President added, “I now know that I can stop living in fear of lice and let my children be social—I just need to check them on a regular basis. It’s actually very freeing!”
To schedule a presentation at your next school or community organization meeting, contact Amy Steindler, Lice Happens Community Outreach Coordinator at 443.994.2750 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
About Head Lice: Head lice require human hosts and cannot be spread by or survive on animals. Head lice are usually contracted via head-to-head contact. Although unable to jump or fly, head lice can easily maneuver through strands of hair. Head lice are common across all socio-economic lines and are NOT a sign of uncleanliness.
About Lice Happens: Lice Happens, a Maryland-based head lice removal service, offers in-home head lice removal, pesticide-free products, education, and community outreach. The company was founded by Mary Jane Eckert, RN, a 15-year school and camp nurse veteran and Nancy Fields, a 10 year quality assurance entrepreneur. For more information about Lice Happens visit www.LiceHappens.com or contact Lice Happens at email@example.com or 443-510-4480