They are part of living in the North woods, part of growing up, part of camping, hunting and warmth. Ticks! We all hate them. In addition we hear so much about Lyme Disease these days that many are more afraid of ticks than ever. In reality, your risk of Lyme Disease is low. Nemours, the non-profit children's medical research organization says that only 1-2% of tick bites result in a problem with Lyme's Disease.
We do recommend as does the CDC that you do what you can to protect yourself from ticks.
Be sure to check yourself and your children for ticks especially after being out in tall grass, the woods etc. Ticks that are removed within 24-48 hours have the least likelihood of causing infection with Lyme's disease.
So, if you do find a tick, how do you safely remove it? Petroleum Jelly? Flaming matches? Fingernail polish remover? No, no and no. Here is a great video from Mayo on how to safely remove ticks.
If after removing the tick, you see redness within the next few days, this is typically normal. If you feel flu like symptoms, develop a rash, headaches, fever etc., see your doctor. Early treatment has the best chance of beating the issue.
Don't let ticks cause you to miss the great outdoors that we live in here in the North woods. Take adequate precautions, keep an eye out for them on your skin and remove them properly and quickly. Enjoy your summer and let us know if we can be of help.
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Audio excerpts are from Dr. Loewen's regular medical help radio broadcasts.