SUNDAY, Might 22, 2016 (HealthDay Information) — Whereas only some tick species infect folks with illnesses, the rising reputation of many outside actions and the unfold of residential developments has upped the percentages that a type of creepy parasites may latch on to you.

“Fortunately, ticks do not fly, leap or fall from the sky,” vector-borne illness professional Stephen Wikel mentioned. He is a professor emeritus of medical sciences at Quinnipiac College’s Frank H. Netter M.D. Faculty of Drugs, in North Haven, Conn.

“They typically transfer from grass to a residing host, and crawl upwards, on the lookout for a heat, moist space to feed. Ticks even have unbelievable anti-detection defenses. For instance, their saliva is loaded with antihistamines, anticoagulants and different inhibitors that forestall wound therapeutic, and dampen ache and itch responses; unfed nymphs are so small, they are often mistaken for freckles,” he mentioned.

So, how will you keep away from changing into a tick’s subsequent meal? Wikel recommends the next preventive steps:

  • Defend your ankles. Put on lengthy pants tucked into excessive socks when doing yard work. Wrap duct tape — sticky-side out — round the place the pants and socks meet in order that crawling ticks get caught on the tape.
  • Gown correctly. Use clothes, tents and different gear handled with repellent, comparable to permethrin. This repellent kills ticks, mosquitoes, chiggers and mites. These merchandise can be found on-line or at sporting items shops.
  • Put on repellent. Apply topical insect repellent that accommodates lower than 40 p.c DEET. Kids ought to use repellent that accommodates not more than 30 p.c DEET, Wikel mentioned.
  • Conduct tick checks. “Tick bites are painless, so if you’re in an space with ticks, carry out a radical tick test and take away ticks instantly,” he suggested.
  • Do not forget pets.“The neurotransmitter blockers in anti-tick remedies and flea collars are very efficient in protecting ticks from biting pets,” mentioned Wikel. “When pets come indoors, test for crawling ticks to forestall them from getting off your pet and on to you.”
  • Create a tick-free zone. You can also make your yard much less engaging to rodent, deer and different tick-carriers. Holding lawns trimmed and creating boundaries between your yard and the woods with wooden chips, mulch or gravel can remove tall grasses the place ticks crawl. Take away wooden piles and stones the place mice, chipmunks and squirrels could disguise. These little critters maintain tick larva and nymphs circulating in nature.
  • Hike rigorously. Keep within the heart of climbing trails to keep away from contact with vegetation.

If regardless of your greatest prevention efforts, a tick nonetheless attaches to you, there is a proper and a improper option to take away ticks, Wikel cautioned.

Do not use matches or the tip of a cigarette to burn off ticks. This might trigger them to transmit micro organism extra rapidly.

The right option to take away a tick is to carry it gently with skinny forceps or tweezers. It is also a good suggestion to make use of a magnifying glass whereas eradicating a tick, Wikel suggested.

In case you can take away the tick intact, you’ll be able to deliver it to your physician’s workplace or native well being division for identification.

In case you develop signs inside just a few weeks after a tick chew, make an appointment along with your physician, advises the U.S. Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention.

Warning indicators of tick-borne illnesses could fluctuate from individual to individual, mentioned Wikel. Signs, which might vary from delicate to extreme, could embrace: fever and chills, complications, fatigue and muscle aches.

Individuals with Lyme illness might also develop joint ache, he mentioned.

“Many individuals assume an indication of Lyme illness is a bull’s-eye rash, however rashes do not at all times happen,” mentioned Wikel.

If left untreated, Lyme illness can have an effect on the joints, the center or the nervous system. When identified early, then again, Lyme illness may be cured with antibiotics. That is the case for many tick-borne illness, Wikel mentioned.

Extra info

The U.S. Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention gives extra info on ticks.

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