SAN DIEGO (KGTV)—Lice. They're itty bitty things that can create very big problems.
Marty, from 91x's 'Marty and Danielle in the Morning', knows all too well.
"My sister who's a nurse came over to the house and I was scratching and I said will you take a look at my scalp? And she said obviously it's lice if it's itching you head," explained Marty.
The radio show host says he and his 7-year-old son had them.
In his case, Marty opted to call in a professional to help get rid of them.
"It was one of those things where you have to just stay diligent through the process and eventually it went away," said Marty.
That process is one that Karen Sokoloff knows very well.
She owns and operates Lice Doctors, an in-home lice treatment service.
They're seeing a 30-40 percent increase in cases this year compared to last.
She says it's a combination of factors, including more close contact during the holidays and the fact that many schools opt to not send kids with nits, or lice eggs, home immediately.
"The reason for that is that too many kids were missing too much school and nits are not contagious only the bugs are contagious," said Sokoloff.
She says there are a lot of misconceptions about lice, like how someone gets it.
"Head lice are transmitted through head-to-head contact. It's very rare for it to be transmitted through a vector like a hat or a brush or a backpack," Sokoloff said.
Or why they get it.
"Contrary to what people think head lice like clean hair the reason for that is they can't grab hold of hair that is greasy."
Sokoloff says if you or someone in your family get lice, don't be ashamed.
She says the best thing you can do is tell those around you so they can be treated too and not continue to pass them back and forth.