Ticks can be a serious problem, especially in the summer. Not only are tick bites a real nuisance, but ticks are known for spreading diseases, such as Lyme disease or Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. Keeping this in mind, there are five things you should know about ticks:
- Ticks are not insects – Ticks are arachnids, which means that they’re more like spiders than mosquitoes. If you think about it, they actually look a lot more like spiders than they do other insects.
- Lyme disease is carried by deer – Only the deer tick carries Lyme disease. The reason there have been so many more Lyme disease-related incidents over the past few years is due to the explosion in the deer population throughout the country. Fortunately, other types do not carry Lyme disease.
- It takes 24 hours to transmit an infection – A lot of people are terrified of ticks because of the spread of Lyme disease. However, it generally takes at least 24 hours for any type of disease to transmit from a tick to its host. This means that if you remove a tick within 24 hours, you should be in the clear.
- Pulling ticks off is easy – One of the misconceptions about ticks is that they are almost impossible to get off once they’ve latched on. This isn’t true. You can simply use a pair of tweezers to pull the tick off. Just try to get a grip on it as close to the skin as possible. Don’t worry if its mouthpart remains attached either; it’s the body that carries diseases.
- You can tell if you’ve gotten Lyme disease – If you’ve contracted Lyme disease, you’ll receive a reddish bulls-eye rash that radiates outward near the bite mark a few days to a month after you’ve been bitten. However, if a red ring shows up but doesn’t get bigger and then disappears, it’s probably just a normal rash from the bite.