Glamour.com By Petra Guglielmetti, March 8, 2016
This week in "things the Internet is freaking out about" we have super lice, a strain of the notorious scalp-dwelling insects that is resistant to the over-the-counter insecticides commonly used to kill them. According to a sudden frenzy of national and local news coverage, the super lice are taking over.
But we say: Everybody relax. Yes, there was a study last year showing that, thanks to gradual gene mutations, lice in at least 25 states have become resistant to pyrethroids, a family of insecticides that includes permethrin, the active ingredient in many drugstore lice remedies like Nix and Rid. However, the study was released last August (at that time triggering the first wave of super-lice hysteria). And similar studies were being done as far back as the '90s. "It's kind of last decade's news," Los Angeles-based lice expert Amy Goldreyer tells us. "Lice have been resistant to over-the-counter products for at least ten years. It was kind of inevitable, given the way most bugs evolve to withstand stronger and stronger pesticides."
We're not sure where this month's headlines pointing to a new "super lice outbreak" originated (we suspect there was a press release from the FDA-approved device that targets super lice using heat, it's mentioned in many of the articles), but since most link back to that same study, it appears there is no sudden, imminent threat that an army of tiny arthropods will descend on your blowout. And really, since lice in general are evolving to resist insecticides, Goldreyer argues that either they're all "super lice" or there's really no such thing. "I've been hoping to find one with a teeny tiny cape that I could identify as a super louse, but no such luck," she jokes.
Meanwhile, even if super lice are found on a scalp near you (they're transmitted mainly through direct head-to-head contact, thus why kids tend to host them far more frequently), it's not like they're indestructible. In fact, good old-fashioned "nit-picking" is still the most thorough method for getting rid of lice. Supers included. "The best way to get rid of lice is by combing with a product that loosens the glue on the eggs," Goldreyer says. "No lice are resistant to manual removal." (Combing properly requires practice, so the best bet is to get it done at a lice-removal place.) Also, doctors can still prescribe medications that super lice aren't resistant too. For more detail on all the options, here's a new Mayo Clinic video that gives a full, graphic rundown on how to defeat super lice. We hope you never need it.
So while super lice certainly aren't charming to think about, we don't think they're anything to lose sleep over. Except for the fact that you're going to be relentlessly scratching at your scalp for at least 24 hours after reading this. Sorry about that.
Hair Whisperers Founder, Amy Goldreyer, expands her successful lice removal service from Southern California to her native Long Island.
The Hair Whisperers, a leading head lice removal service, announces its expansion into Long Island. Parents in Nassau County, Suffolk County and Fire Island now have a safe, non-toxic alternative to head lice removal.
Each year, millions of children come home from school or camp with head lice. Many parents turn to over the counter remedies that can be harmful when not used properly, only to find that in another week, their child still has lice. That is because effective combing is an important component in the battle against head lice.
Parents in Long Island can now have an experienced nit picker remove both lice and nits in the comfort of their own home. Hair Whisperers has 8 years of experience and success removing lice throughout Southern California. Founder, Amy Goldreyer, a native of New York, has become a respected resource about head lice, appearing on ABC's Nightline, and has been interviewed by the New York Times and other publications nationwide.
"Parents find it difficult to get rid of lice because it is so hard to get every last nit, leaving a few to hatch and start the infestation over," says Amy Goldreyer, founder of Hair Whisperers. "I created my lice removal company to provide safe and effective removal options for busy parents who are overwhelmed by a lice diagnosis."
Head lice is a nuisance that need not slow a family down. Hair Whisperers offer in-home appointments 7 days per week. Schools can request screenings and presentations about lice to learn how to minimize the spread of lice while their kids are at home, at school, or playing sports.
About Hair Whisperers - The Hair Whisperers was established in 2006 by Amy Goldreyer to help families get rid of lice in the comfort and privacy of their home. Service areas include Southern California from San Luis Obispo to San Diego as well as Long Island. Their head lice treatment does not use chemicals and they do not sell any products claiming to eradicate lice. Instead, they use natural products to aid in the manual removal of lice and nits. For more information about Hair Whisperers services, call 800-319-8751 or visit www.HairWhisperers.com.
Lice Removal Service, Hair Whisperers, Launches the Is it Lice Mobile App for iPhone / iPod Touch with their marketing team at Kazu Agency.Parents and school nurses can now learn how to detect head lice and find lice removal services in their area.
Los Angeles, June 7, 2011 - Hair Whisperers, a leading head lice removal service in Southern California, and marketing experts Kazu Agency, announce the launch of the Is it Lice App for iPhone and iPod Touch for immediate download in the iTunes App Store.
The Is it Lice App is the first application designed to assist parents with a crucial step in the lice management cycle, detection. With step-by-step instructions, photos and video, the App is an essential tool for parents who need to identify lice and nits.
The Is it Lice iPhone App offers other functionality including:
""Each year schools and camps send letters home telling parents to check their kids for lice, but they have no idea what they are looking for," said Hair Whisperers owner Amy Goldreyer. "If they miss the signs of head lice and continue sending their kids to school, the problem spreads."
Hair Whisperers has offered non-toxic lice removal services since 2006 and strives to educate parents and reduce the stigma often associated with the diagnosis of head lice. Goldreyer adds, "Lice is not a sign of poor hygiene. The fact is, lice is rampant in schools across America, but once detected can be removed. Now, for the first time, the "Is it Lice" App demystifies detection of lice and puts an easy-to-use tool in parent's hands.
The Is it Lice App for iPhone and iPod Touch is currently available for purchase from the iTunes App Store for $2.99 at www.itunes.com/appstore.
About The Hair Whisperers - The Hair Whisperers was established in 2006 by Amy Goldreyer to help families get rid of lice in the comfort and privacy of their home. Hair Whisperers strives to offer customers safe, non-toxic lice treatment options to get rid of both lice and nits without the use of potentially harmful over-the-counter or prescription products. For more information about Hair Whisperers services or the Heat Device, call 800-319-8751 or visit www.HairWhisperers.com.
About Kazu Agency - Kazu is a boutique, integrated marketing company based in Los Angeles, bridging the marketing and technology gap for start-up, small businesses and established corporations. We help customers identify their business and brand strategies to develop goals we can build strategies around. Discover how we can help you with your marketing or web needs at www.KazuAgency.com.
Hair Whisperers Educates Parents & Teachers How to Prevent and Check for Lice
Los Angeles, August 31, 2010 -- The Hair Whisperers, a Southern California head lice removal service, announced today that it will expand its lice education seminar to include prevention tips and hands-on lice check training for parents and teachers.
The American Academy of Pediatrics clinical report on head lice, published in the August 2010 issue of Pediatrics suggests "In environments where children are together, adults should be aware of the signs and symptoms of head lice infestation. It may be useful to provide information periodically about the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of head lice to the families of all children."
In business since 2006, Hair Whisperers uses safe, non-toxic methods to remove head lice in Southern California. In addition to providing in-home lice removal services to families and screenings at schools, Hair Whisperers has developed a presentation to present to schools focused on education and prevention of head lice. Participants have the opportunity to look at actual lice and nits so they can better identify lice from other debris commonly found in children's hair. Beginning this school year, the presentation will include an option for a hands-on training to help parents and school personnel perform thorough lice checks.
For the millions of families affected by head lice each year, Hair Whisperers now provides the education parents need to understand head lice and manage it in their home. Knowing head lice isn't a health hazard or sign of poor hygiene offers parents who are overwhelmed by the presence of lice some peace of mind as they decide how they will offer treatment to their child.
"If parents know what lice looks like on their children, they will be able to tackle the problem before it becomes a huge infestation. Untreated lice can infect friends and family members before it is discovered," said Amy Goldreyer, Founder of Hair Whisperers. Goldreyer continues, "By educating parents about lice and how to diagnose it, parents will be better prepared to seek proper treatment and prevent spreading."
About The Hair Whisperers - The Hair Whisperers was established in 2006 by Amy Goldreyer to help families get rid of lice in the comfort and privacy of their home. Hair Whisperers strives to offer customers safe, non-toxic lice treatment options to get rid of both lice and nits without the use of potentially harmful over-the-counter or prescription products. For more information about Hair Whisperers services, call 800-319-8751 or visit www.HairWhisperers.com.
Raise the subject of head lice, and otherwise sensible, composed parents can be reduced to panic. The fact that no treatment is 100 percent effective - and that eggs may be hatching right now in your daughter's ponytail - only intensifies the anxiety. All because of a rather harmless scavenger no bigger than the period at the end of this sentence.
When word got out that Amy Goldreyer was in the know, frustrated moms began to seek her out - on the phone, by her car at her children's school, through friends of friends.
"I hear you are the 'Hair Whisperer,' " one woman said to her. From there, a business with a catchy name was born.
The Hair Whisperer is a nice name for an unappetizing - but booming - business. Ms. Goldreyer, who lives in Brentwood, Calif., is a lice-removal expert. Parents hire her (and now her staff of a dozen) to make house calls, meticulously check through children's hair and, if lice are found, treat them with nontoxic products.
Stubborn parasites outsmart drugs - and mortify moms
Three weeks into Maddie Ratcliff's first year of school, the South Carolina kindergartner is already the subject of an unwelcome science experiment: What's the best way to get rid of head lice?
It's a question that has stumped her mother, Brittany Ratcliff, 28, of Charleston, who was horrified to find tiny parasites in her 5-year-old's hair this week - and even more upset to discover that over-the-counter medications wouldn't kill them because the bugs have grown resistant to the poison.
Only in LA do nit-doctors make house calls
It's a whole different ball game being a parent in Hollywood. Only in LA would you be able to pick up a phone and call in the services of a Hair Whisperer, aka Nit Doctor. The company, run by Amy Goldreyer, was given its name by Amy's script writer husband who came up with the title because 'it was really hard to find a name that didnt use the word lice'.
Hollywood famous parents aren't expected to douse their children's hair in nit shampoo or comb out lice themselves. Instead, the Hair Whisperer will make a house call and pick out the nits one by one. Amy doesn't rate either nit combs or tea-tree oil as a remedy; 'Let's say that, Day One, you pick out 100 nits,' she says. 'Each day, you have to keep checking your child's hair for more nits. Shampoo is not enough.'
...At least one baby consultant won't be getting a show anytime soon. Amy Goldreyer, Hollywood's best-kept secret for lice-related house calls, said that while she realizes how well known she has become, people aren't exactly running up to her on the street. Her husband, a sitcom writer, came up with her business name, the Hair Whisperer, because, she said, "it was really hard to find a name that didn't use the word 'lice.'"
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As a mother of three young children, I was sympathetic to a flurry of emails I recently received from parents alarmed about an epidemic of head lice at Canyon Charter Elementary School. However, until those creepy crawlers began to hatch in my 7-year-old daughter's hair, I had no idea how much they could stir up a household.
We were standing outside on a Sunday afternoon when I looked down and saw them. The sun was shining in just the right spot. 'Oh my God,' I shrieked. My husband immediately told me to calm down. 'Not so loud,' he said. 'What is this in her hair?' I said, and quickly lifted up her braids to check at the nape of her neck. Sure enough, there were more of those silver-looking things stuck on her hair.