It is easy to get lice, even if you are ‘clean’
To join into the lice controversy sparked by Samantha Christmann’s column, I want to support her view of the problem by saying that, contrary to another letter writer’s understanding, lice are not particular about whose head they inhabit. This woman, because of feeling “grossed out,” either did not read Christmann’s column or did not understand what she was trying to say.
Using sources that included a pediatrician and a professional lice exterminator, Christmann hammered home the point that, “clean” or “dirty,” lice is an equal-opportunity affliction. If the writer was able to get her daughter through years of school (and camp and day care and sleep-overs and anywhere else that children congregate in close quarters) without getting the nasty critters, hurray for her. But, contrary to her belief, it was not her high hygiene standards, but rather sheer luck.
Thirty-five years as an elementary school teacher taught me that it is easy to get lice, even if you’re “clean,” and often very difficult to get rid of. I would venture a guess that, buried in that writer’s circle of lice-free acquaintances, there might be a victim or two, who are hesitant to admit their experiences because of the stigma that is attached.
Bravo to Christmann for “coming clean” about her own traumatic childhood experience and using it as a catalyst for a very informative and helpful article.
Ruth B. Hasseler