Today’s ticks that carry Lyme disease are more rampant than ever.
White-tailed deer are the primary carrier of these ticks. Our growing civilization has greater proximity to these deer, so our tick exposure has increased.
What Do Ticks Look Like?
Ticks have eight legs and come in different sizes. They don’t have eyes or antennae. They have a head and body. There are many varieties of ticks that carry different kinds of germs. You have to identify the ticks correctly to know the potential disease exposure.
Spray your shoes with permethrin since DEET isn’t very effective on ticks. You can also have your clothing treated with permethrin. Botanical oils may not work well if you’re going into a tick-infested area. Ticks that carry Lyme disease latch on at shoe level and climb up your legs.
If you go exploring, the American dog tick is prevalent and may hitchhike a ride home with you. Toss your clothes in the dryer for 10 minutes to kill any live ticks. Check yourself, family and pets for ticks after the adventure.
It typically takes at least 24 hours for diseases to transmit. Use a pointed tweezer to pull the tick straight out. Take a photo of the tick. Save the tick in a plastic bag for a few weeks in case it needs to be tested.
Listen as tick expert Dr. Thomas Mather joins Melanie Cole, MS, to talk ticks.