Protect Your Family From Tick & Lyme

05/01/2015


Ticks   

As the weather warms and your family become more active outside it is important to remember that you are not the only ones enjoying the spring weather; ticks are also active and looking for hosts to feed of off. This is significant because deer ticks in our region have been linked to the debilitating Lyme disease.

Ticks are a parasitic pest in the arachnid family that feed on the blood of many animals, birds, and unfortunately for us, humans. There are many species of ticks but the black-legged tick (deer tick) is the species that is responsible for spreading Lyme disease. Deer ticks are very small growing only to be 1/16th to 1/8th of an inch in length; they have orangish brown bodies with darker colored legs.

Lyme disease is caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi. It is transmitted to people and pets through the bite of an infected deer tick. If bit you may not even realize it. Within in 3 to 30 days you may feel as though you're coming down with the flu but it might actually be worse than that. Fever, tiredness, aches and pains are all symptoms of Lyme. More telling is the bulls-eye rash that may develop in one area or several areas of their body. It's important to note, the rash does not always present. While the flu will let up with rest and hydration, Lyme disease not treated may lead to complications with the heart and the nervous system, along with joint swelling and the erosion of cartilage and bone.

So where do these ticks hang out?

Good question. Ticks favor woods, tall grasses and dark, damp areas. It's not uncommon to find them lurking on the edges wooded footpaths, hiking trails or along fence lines.

Protect your family from ticks

To avoid encounters with this pest, we urge you to be very cautious in tick-rich environments. With that in mind, here are few tick prevention tips:

Don't dress to impress.

Ticks are attracted to dark colors. Skip the black and opt for lighter coloring clothing. This will also help spot ticks that have crawled on you. When spending time outdoors wear long pants, long sleeve shirts, and close-toed shoes. We know what you're thinking, it's shorts, tees and sandal season! True, and you can still wear the summer gear, just avoid it when you may be in area where ticks are prevalent. We recommend hiking pants like these ones from L.L. Bean and hiking boots like the ones we found at Cabela's. You should also check your clothing and body for ticks after an excursion outside.

Stock up on DEET and Permethrin

Using a tick spray that contains either DEET or Permethrin may help repel and kill ticks. Before you douse yourself and your family in DEET you may want to check with your family doctor. Permethrin is good for spraying on camping gear, clothing and shoes.

Yard work matters

Keeping your lawn cut low, removing decaying leaves, logs and other organic debris will make your lawn look better and less attractive to ticks.

Don't forget your pets

Talk to your vet about tick treatment. Often times, vets will recommend one that offers both flea and tick control. You should also check Fido and other outdoor pets for ticks before allowing them inside.

If you notice ticks have become a problem on your property, American Pest can help! Our tick control services are designed to reduce the tick population around your home. For more information on ticks in Montgomery County and how American can help to protect your family, please call us today!






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