US lousy with removal salons

  1. This is gross - come on surely parents can't be that pushed for time or lazy that they get someone else to de-louse their children.....there is no way I would work there.,25197,23156393-12377,00.html

    By staff writers and wires | February 04, 2008

    HEAD lice removal salons are booming in the US, especially on the west coast where parents are out-sourcing one of the most time-consuming and perennial tasks of parenthood.

    In Oakland, California, Melissa Shilliday started NitPixies with Dina Shields, a former teacher and fellow California mum, and it is at least the third San Francisco Bay area salon of its kind to open since last April.

    Lice infestations are an age-old problem for schools and families, and most parents still deal with them through chemical shampoos or cheap hair conditioner, combing out the parasites and eggs, and washing clothing and bedding.

    Hair Fairies in San Francisco and Love Bugs in Lafayette, California, are two more examples of such salons.

    For $US100 ($A111) an hour per head, NitPixies technicians in plastic caps comb through sections of hair, collecting small insects, living and dead, and white "nits" or eggs.

    Then they spray tea tree oil on to stun the bugs and, hopefully, make them let go of the hair.

    Sleepover parties are often blamed for the lice epidemics.

    Three one-hour treatments are recommended, and some customers sometimes bring their clothes and bedding to toss into NitPixies' industrial-size washers and dryers.

    A family of three children could tot up a bill of at least $US900 ($A998).

    Richard Pollack, a public health entomologist at the Harvard School of Public Health, is sceptical of the proliferation of lice salons.

    "These seem to be spreading faster than the lice themselves,'' he said.

    Public health researchers say lice is often over-diagnosed, especially in school screenings, and the presence of nits alone does not necessarily mean a child has an "active" case of head lice
  2. Geesh....

    We had to fight head lice all the time when my son was in elementary school, they had "story time" on a carpet in the classroom and the rug just kept getting re-infected. DH finally told the principal to take the carpet out since the treatments back then cost a lot of money and I was having to do it several times a month for the whole family. Heck, just MY hair alone took up a half a bottle of Quell!

    I disagree with the 3 treatments for the infestation... once is plenty if you also wash the sheets, blankets and pillows, as well as spray the coats and car seats. People over chemicalize themselves as it is, no reason to kill EVERYTHING in your home for the want of a couple of bugs.
  3. Ugh. We are very lucky in that neither of our boys have had lice. One year a letter came home warning that a child in one of their classes had it, but my kids didn't get it. Children and sheets can be washed, but I wouldn't even know where to start with the furniture and carpet and all...
  4. i think it is a great idea (albeit a bit expensive) sister got it three or four times one year and even though i didn't live with her i still had to do my hair once because she had stayed over. i had thick curly hair down to my tailbone....i totally would have paid someone to do it for me.
  5. I think that title is overly harsh and judgemental of the US. I'm sure the US's incident of lice is no different than Australia's.... the US just has that entrepreneurial spirit!
  6. lol this is a bit weird! Not that I'd want to be doing it myself, frankly I'd be afraid of getting it! yuck. BUT paying someone to do it is a bit well...funny...but also not necessary.
  7. :confused1:
    Being in the USA myself, I've never heard of this.

    I wouldn't take my kids, but I can see the pros to be honest.
    It could be a good idea to me for the following reasons:
    -not all parent's are educated enough about how to treat and remove it effectively
    -it's time consuming - VERY if it 's a DD w/ a buttload of hair
    -keeps it from spreading at home - less to clean up
  8. My scalp is itchy now.
  9. LOL!

    Well-I don't know of any salons here in NYC-but, i do know there are a couple of women who will come to your house and take care of your kid's hair for a fee. I have seen parents on a local board talk about the "lice lady". Seems like a good idea to me, i wouldn't know where to begin or even what to look for in my kid's head.
  10. Wow- I've never heard of this before.
  11. I don't think the title was meant to be offensive or be judgemental but purely a play on words.

    Good luck to the US for seeing a market and targeting it, but I still think that the health and wellbeing of children is first and foremost a parental issue.
  12. I have to say that if our DS (when he gets here) ever gets lice, and I can find a salon to do this, I would be all over it. In my view, I'd be looking out for his health and wellbeing by taking him to a specialist who knows how to deal with rather than trying to do it my freaked-out self. Then I could focus on washing everything in the house on the sanitary cycle of the washer and washing my hair obsessively.

    And my head itches now too...
  13. Aaaa... I get it... 'lousy' as in the singular of lice :idea:. Took me a second read.
  14. When we were in elementray school we all kept getting reinfected one year because the coat closet had all the coats on top of one another and everyone in the class would get it.

    It's not just the hair - you have to delouse the sheets, beds, furniture. carpets. It's a huge all day endeavor to get rid of it. If there was a salon around I might think about it on top of everything else you have to do. My problem would be that its really cheap to get rid of on your own. I'd have trouble paying a lot of money for it. It's time consuming, but you can get everything you need at Walmart.