May is Lyme Disease Awareness Month! Here at ohDEER, this is important to us because a goal of our Tick & Mosquito Control is to prevent tick-borne illnesses such as Lyme Disease. As people spend more time outdoors, so do ticks.
What is Lyme Disease?
According to the CDC, Lyme Disease is the most common vector-borne disease in the United States. It is caused by the bacteria Borrelia. Lyme causes a fever, headache, fatigue, and rash, and is treated with antibiotics. If left untreated, the infection can spread throughout your body. Learn more about Lyme Disease directly from the CDC’s site.
How Can You Get Lyme Disease?
You can contract Lyme Disease if you are bitten by an infected tick. The tick has to be attached for 36-48 hours for the bacteria to be transmitted. Lyme is primarily spread by Blacklegged ticks, also known as Deer ticks. The diseases ticks carry are the reason it is so crucial to remove ticks as soon as possible.
Where do ticks live?
Ticks live under leaves, in grass or gardens, in forests, around old stone walls, at the edge of the woods and in any shady or moist areas at ground level. They wait for a host to pass by while resting on the tips of grass or shrubs. They can also be very hard to spot, adult ticks are only about the size of a sesame seed.
Tips for Preventing Lyme Disease
- Avoid heavily wooded areas or tall grass where ticks live and stay in the middle of the trail when hiking
- Do a thorough tick check on yourself, kids, and pets after spending time outdoors
- Use a lint-roller on your dog’s fur to remove any ticks too small to see
- Throw any clothes worn outside in the dryer to kill any attached ticks
- Wear high socks and close-toed shoes, tuck your pants into your socks if possible
- Spray clothing and hiking gear with an insect repellant such as Permethrin
- Promptly remove the tick with fine tip tweezers if you are bitten
- Do not leave the tick’s head in your skin
- Send tick in to be tested for Lyme Disease
- All-Natural Tick & Mosquito Control from ohDEER
Remember to wear your green this month to show support for those living with Lyme Disease. Be safe!