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Nurse/Mom Duo Start Lice-Fighting Business

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(credit: CBS) Holly Wagner
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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Back to school time is the time of year when there tend to be a lot of lice outbreaks and it can be hard to get rid of.

Most complain that it’s a very tedious and time consuming outbreak because you have to wash everything — hair, clothes, and bedding for everyone in the home.

That’s why two Minnesota moms started a business called Ladibugs, that uses a newer way to treat lice.

Mary Suggs said she tried several home remedies for head lice before she bringing her kids to the St. Louis Park store.

“We did olive oil for two nights and slept with plastic bags over our heads. Then the third night, we did vinegar — supposed to kill the eggs. I was still seeing stuff in her hair,” said Suggs.

She wanted to stay away from using a product from the drug store.

“That was one of my biggest fears, just putting all of these harsh chemicals on their hair,” Suggs said.

That was the same concern that sparked the idea for Ladibugs. Lisa Rudquist and Rachel Knutson are registered nurses, mothers and friends.

“It was such a nightmare when it happened to us at our homes,” said Rudquist. “We really just wanted to do something to help other moms and help get rid of the problem easier than what we did.”

The pair worked with a chemist from Wisconsin to develop their own line of chemical free products and they also worked out a deal to get their hands on the Lousebuster, a tool developed and patented by researchers at the University of Utah.

“It looks kind of like a vacuum,” said Suggs.

The Lousebuster works like a blow dryer — heating up to 138 degrees, dehydrating lice and nits and killing them.

“It feels like a massage,” said 7-year-old Kambria, who was getting the full treatment.

Suggs thinks her daughter picked up lice at daycare.

“You always think you’ll never get it. Your children will never get it, you’re really clean — and it just happens,” she said.

The Lousebuster is pricey — $189 for a treatment, but you can use health savings account or flex account to pay for it.

According to the researchers at the University of Utah, it’s more than 95 percent effective at treating Lice and nits.

So what do you do if you get a note from your child’s school telling you that a child in their class has lice?

First, talk to your kids about not sharing brushes, combs, hats, scarves or hoodies.

There are also shampoos and sprays that can help prevent a child from getting it.

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