This June, the National Safety Council is sponsoring National Safety Month, a public awareness campaign to promote “reducing the leading causes of injury and death at work, on the road, and in our homes and communities.”
Lice Clinics of America – Northwest is taking this opportunity to call attention to safe head lice treatment.
“There are two important safety issues with head lice,” says Mark Meyer, co-owner of Lice Clinics of America – Northwest. “First, it’s important to understand how to avoid getting head lice in the first place. Second, people need to know that some retail lice products and home remedies can be risky and dangerous.”
“Head lice don’t really cause any health problems,” Meyer said. “They’re a nuisance more than anything, but no one wants bugs in their hair. The best way to prevent head lice is to avoid head-to-head contact. Children get lice the most because they spend more time in close physical contact than adults.”
Then there’s the alleged cures for head lice that are often worse than the condition they are supposed to treat.
“Many parents don’t realize that the active ingredients in over-the-counter head lice treatment products are pesticides,” Meyer said. “The most popular products use pyrethroids, a class of home and garden pesticides that have been linked to behavioral and development problems in children.”
“What makes things worse is that the products are mostly ineffective now because head lice have developed resistance to pyrethroids,” Meyer said. “The most recent study published in the Journal of Medical Entomology found that 98 percent of lice in most states now carry a genetic resistance to pyrethroids.”
Home lice treatment “remedies” can also be dangerous, even deadly. Some internet sites recommend using kerosene to remove head lice, which is highly flammable—there have been multiple cases of severe burns from the practice. Mayonnaise is another popular home remedy for lice treatment. In 2016, a toddler suffocated when a plastic bag slipped over her face—the bag had been placed on her head to contain the mayonnaise.
Lice Clinics of America – Northwest provides head lice removal using a pesticide-free, FDA-cleared medical device known as AirAllé®. The device uses heated air to dehydrate lice and eggs in a matter of minutes. In clinical trials, AirAllé killed live lice and more than 98 percent of eggs. The device has been used to treat more than 650,000 cases of head lice with a success rate better than 99 percent.
Best of all, a single treatment only takes about an hour and is guaranteed to be effective. “If you come to our clinic with a case of head lice, you’ll leave lice-free an hour later,” Meyer said.
Lice Clinics of America also makes a line of safe, pesticide-free, guaranteed home products for people that prefer home treatment. There’s no reason to expose yourself or your children to dangerous products or practices.
“People tend to panic when they discover head lice in their families,” Meyer said, “and sometimes they try things that are not safe. We want everyone to know that we make dealing with head lice fast, safe, and easy.”
Lice Clinics of America – Northwest operates clinics in Portland, Clackamas, Salem and Bend, Oregon and Vancouver, Washington and is open seven days a week, 365 days a year by appointment. Call 503-404-0475 or visit liceclinicsnorthwest.com for more information or to schedule an appointment.