With warmer weather comes tick season. If you plan on any outdoor activities, it may be a good idea to brush up on tick prevention information to keep yourself and your family safe. Tick are normally found near the ground in bushy or wooded areas. Though they cannot jump or fly, they still manage to find a way to a host. Ticks will climb tall grasses and shrubs and wait for a host to brush up against them. At that point, ticks will make their way to your skin and attach.
So how can you protect yourself from these opportunistic arachnid? If you know you’ll be outdoors, particularly in wooded or bushy areas, prevention is key!
- Use insect repellent with DEET.
- Wear permethrin-treated clothes.
- Treat dogs for ticks.
- Check for ticks after outdoor activities.
- Shower soon after coming indoors.
If you do find a tick has attached to you, there are safe ways to remove ticks. Tick removal steps include:
- Use fine-tipped tweezers to grasp the tick as close to the skin’s surface as possible.
- Pull upward with steady, even pressure. Don’t twist or jerk the tick; this can cause the tick’s mouth parts to break off and remain in the skin. If this happens, remove the mouth parts with clean tweezers.
- After removing the tick, thoroughly clean the bite area and your hands with rubbing alcohol, an iodine scrub, or soap and water.
If you develop a rash or fever within a few weeks of after removing a tick, be sure to visit your primary care physician. Make note of when you were bit and where you most likely got bit.