The summer brings warmer weather and longer days, but also more insects like ticks. Ticks thrive in hot, humid climates and prefer thick brush and grass. While most tick bites are relatively harmless, ticks are known for carrying bacteria and illnesses like Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. Knowing what to do if you’ve been bitten by a tick is essential for keeping yourself healthy and free of tick-borne diseases.
Check Yourself Immediately After Outdoor Activities
Ticks are fairly small and can be hard to spot, especially if they are attached to your clothes or on less visible areas like your scalp or armpits. If an infected tick is attached to you for too long, it can greatly increase your risk of contracting Lyme disease. Do a thorough, full-body check after any outdoor activity to prevent tick bites and tick-related diseases. Since ticks love moist, hard-to-reach areas, taking a hot shower and scrubbing your scalp can be effective in ridding your body of ticks too. Try leaving work shoes outside or in your entryway and wash clothes in hot water if you notice any ticks.
What to do if You Notice a Tick Bite
If you find a tick attached to your body, carefully remove it with tweezers and try to avoid squeezing the tick. According to medical experts, hot matches or nail polish aren’t as effective at detaching ticks and should be avoided unless tweezers are not available. Once the tick is dislodged, clean the bite wound with rubbing alcohol or warm water and soap. Symptoms for Lyme disease can take weeks to form, so make sure you monitor the bite wound closely to look for any possible symptoms.
Symptoms of Lyme Disease
While most tick bites are harmless and only cause minor itching and redness, Lyme disease can be carried through infected ticks and can cause a myriad of health issues. If you notice increased redness or a rash around the bite wound, contact your doctor right away. Contact your doctor immediately if you develop fever, headaches, muscle pains and chills, as these are common signs of Lyme disease and you may need antibiotics.
Keeping Yourself Safe From Ticks
Ticks can easily enter your home from your clothes, skin or pets. Even killing all visible ticks does not exclude their eggs. If you find yourself with a tick infestation, it’s always best to hire a professional pest control specialist to help keep your home tick-free. Contact us at RID Pest Control today for more information on our services.