Tick Prevention Tips for the Summer
The summer months are the perfect time to go on a walk, hike, or run outside. This time of year is also the perfect time for ticks. It is important to remember how to avoid ticks while enjoying your outdoor activities.
Ticks can carry harmful bacteria and pathogens that can infect humans and animals with disease, one of which is Lyme Disease. The East Coast is home to the Ixodes Scapularis, a carrier of Lyme Disease. Consider some of these tips the next time you want to head outdoors to reduce your risk of contracting a tick bite.
Protect Yourself from Tick Bites:
Avoid Heavily Wooded Areas and Walk in the Center of Trails
Ticks are often found in heavily wooded areas or in thick brush. If you are hiking or walking in one of these areas, it is recommended that you stick to the center of the trail to reduce the risk of a tick attaching to a host.
Wear long sleeves and pants when working with brush or in other common area of ticks
As mentioned in the previous tip, ticks hide in the underbrush of tall grass. If you are active in one of these areas, it is important to wear clothes that cover your skin (think long sleeve shirts and pants). Jobs that involve working in areas like this are at an increased risk for Lyme Disease (which ticks can carry if they bite an infected species and then attach to a host).
Use repellents that contain 20-30% DEET or use products that contain 0.5% permethrin on clothing.
Repellents are another strategy for keeping those pesky ticks away. Use repellents that contain 20-30% DEET. Additionally, you can treat clothes with permethrin which is a chemical that paralyzes and kills ticks.
Examine clothes, backpacks and pets after coming back from any outdoor activity
After spending time outside, it is highly recommended that you check your clothes and your body for ticks. An easy way to check yourself is to do a body check in the shower. Bathing can wash away any unattached ticks. Places to search for ticks include the following: hairline, inside/behind the ear, back of neck, armpit, inside the belly button, legs, behind the knees, groin, and between toes. Also remember to check your pets for ticks as well.
What Should I Do if I Find a Tick or Suspect I’ve Been Bitten?
If you’ve pulled off a tick or find a ring-like rash, it is possible that you have been infected with Lyme Disease. DOCS Urgent Care of Connecticut provides testing and proper treatment. If left untreated, this disease can lead to extreme complications. Follow this link to learn about DOCS Urgent Care tick removal, testing, and treatment services, or to set up an appointment: