Here in Knoxville, we are used to dealing with a number of pests in the spring and summertime. Few pose more of a threat than ticks, who are infamous for carrying and potentially spreading Lyme disease. While this disease is rare, it’s nonetheless important to learn how to protect yourself from tick bites. When removed in the first 24 hours, the risk of tick-borne illnesses is low. For this reason, time is of the essence. With May being National Lyme Disease Awareness Month, the team at Russell’s Pest Control is here with their top tips for safe tick removal.
Ticks don’t only spread Lyme disease, and certain types of ticks transmit other diseases. For example, dog ticks transmit Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, but not Lyme disease. Deer ticks, also known as blacklegged ticks, are the species known to transmit Lyme disease. These tiny parasitic insects can and will attach to any part of the body but are often found in the groin, scalp, and armpits.
Thankfully, the chances of contracting a tick-borne disease is low when the tick is safely removed within the first 24 hours of the bite. It is only when an infected tick has been attached for 36–48 hours can the bacterium be transmitted. Knowing how to promptly and safely remove ticks, then, is essential to stopping the transmission of Lyme disease.
Steps For Safe Tick Removal
When you are bitten by a tick, it’s important to act quickly to remove it. Thankfully, you can typically do this right at home with a pair of fine-tipped tweezers. This method, backed by the CDC, is proven to safely and effectively remove ticks:
- Firmly grasp the head or mouth of the tick with your tweezers, as close to the skin as possible. Avoid grasping the tick’s body to the best of your ability, as this could inject the tick’s blood into the skin.
- Steadily pull the tick outward in a straight motion. Try to not twist the tweezers, as this could dislodge the head, leaving it embedded in your skin.
- After the tick is removed, carefully clean the area of the bite, as well as your hands, with soap and water.
- To safely dispose of the tick, place it in a sealed bag or jar with alcohol. Another option is to flush the tick down the toilet. Do not crush the tick.
If you notice a rash or other symptoms developing after a tick bite, immediately see your doctor.
Safe Tick Removal Services in Knoxville TN
Ticks are an important pest to keep in mind in the spring and summertime in our region. By knowing how to prevent a tick bite as well as how to remove a tick when you are bitten, you can stay safe from the dangers they pose. Learn more by contacting the experts at Russell’s Pest Control today!