Ticks- related illnesses, Lyme Disease in particular, can be severe and sometimes fatal, but there are steps your can take to help protect yourself from coming into contact with ticks:
- Wear light-colored clothing – Ticks, especially the Blacklegged deer tick which can carry Lyme disease, are found in wooded areas and like to climb tall grasses to wait for a passing host. When in a wooded environments, wear light-colored long pants, long-sleeve shirts and closed-toe shoes to prevent ticks from biting the skin. Light-colored clothing makes the ticks easier to spot if one decides to hitch a ride.
- Use bug spray – DEET is the active ingredient in many insect repellents and is an effective way to deter ticks and other pests when outside. Bug spray containing at least 20% DEET is recommended.
- Make your property unattractive – Keep your grass cut. Ticks prefer to hide in tall grass and wait for a passing human or animal.
- Check for ticks – After being outdoors, inspect yourself for ticks. They are fond of warm body parts such as the groin and armpit, so be sure to check all areas. Also, don’t forget to check your pets for ticks if they have been outside. Pets can easily pick up ticks, which can then be transferred to other family members once inside the house.