PORTLAND, OR – Lice Clinics of America reported that their 330 clinics across the network saw an average increase of 30 percent in lice activity nationwide this winter. This data was gathered and compared from the organization’s bookings and treatments in January 2018 and January 2019 in its clinics in the U.S. and abroad. Geographic areas such as Portland saw an increase of 60 percent this January. The CDC estimates six million to 12 million infestations occur each year in the U.S. among children three to 11 years of age.
“Lice Clinics of America has a unique opportunity to gather its data to help identify trends. We believe we can attribute the increase in lice infestation bookings and treatments in our clinics to three things,” said Lice Clinics of America CEO Claire Roberts. “First, it’s a fact that many over-the-counter products are no longer effective in treating the “super lice” of today, so people are seeking professional help. Second, there is a true lack of understanding by the public on the life cycle of lice and how they spread. And third, people are becoming increasingly aware of the more effective, technologically-advanced treatment methods offered by Lice Clinics of America.”
Lice are highly contagious. According to the CDC, “Head-to-head contact with an already infected person is the most common way to get head lice. Head-to-head contact is common during play at school, at home and elsewhere, such as sports activities, the playground, slumber parties, and camps.”
Dr. Krista Lauer, medical director of Lice Clinics of America, reports, “If you have school-age children in a region where lice infestations have been reported, it’s important to take some immediate steps to either prevent your children from being infested or properly treat and kill the lice before they spread to others in your family and social group.”
Dr. Lauer says, “First, don’t panic, and second, don’t be embarrassed. Those pesky lice have nothing to do with personal hygiene.” She recommends the following to make sure lice aren’t living in your child’s hair: