While a tick bite can simply be a small inconvenience, those little guys also have potential to cause serious health complications for their hosts. From routine yard work to activities such as hiking or hunting, anyone who spends a significant amount of time outdoors should learn about ways to prevent tick bites and Lyme disease. 

Lyme disease is a very serious condition that can have significant and long-lasting adverse effects on your health. As Lyme disease is transmitted through the bite of an infected tick, minimizing the risk of exposure is of utmost importance – and this article offers a number of helpful strategies to do just that. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure! 

However, if you suspect that you may have been bitten by a tick, or are experiencing symptoms possibly related to Lyme disease, see your primary care doctor as soon as possible! It is better to be safe than sorry, as timing is of the essence for not only preventing Lyme disease, but also for preventing the dangerous sequelae it can produce. 

Dr. Joseph F. Fasanello

Trinity Medical Primary Care

What Is Lyme Disease?

Lyme disease is a condition that is primarily spread to humans by deer ticks, and can be transmitted when a tick buries itself under its host’s skin. Side effects from Lyme disease can be minor, and present themselves in flu-like symptoms or a bulls-eye rash. They can also be more severe, and affect a patient’s heart, joints, or nervous system.

Ticks thrive in densely wooded and forested areas at times of the year when the temperature is above freezing. Don’t be tricked into thinking that ticks are only a problem during the summer – they’re around for early spring and fall, too!

How to Tick-proof Your Home and Yard

Ticks can be small and harmless, but sometimes their bite can pack a punch. In warmer weather months, make sure to take these 3 precautions to keep ticks from invading your personal space.

1

Create a tick-safe zone.

Ticks enjoy high-growth areas, so consistently cutting the lawn will keep your grass short and the ticks at bay. Position items that ticks would enjoy, such as stacks of firewood and bird feeders, farther away from the house. After spending time outdoors, make sure to tumble your clothes on your dryer’s warmest setting – ticks don’t react well to heat. 

2

Apply personal repellents.

Though success is not guaranteed, insect repellent spray can work wonders against ticks. The active chemical in most bug sprays is DEET, so a higher DEET concentration will be better at discouraging ticks. It’s recommended to choose a spray that’s at least 20% DEET in order to provide adequate protection.

3

Keep your critters under control.

Keeping ticks away is one thing, keeping other pests away is another. Two of the most common tick hosts are rats and deer, both of which may occasionally wander into the backyard or garage. Take the middlemen out of the equation by closing trashcans and looking into bushes that repel deer.  

Find a Specialist Near You
Call (716) 706-2112

Find a Specialist Near You
Call (716) 706-2112