Beware of ticks!

Few days ago, a lady sent a distress message to my inbox.

She noticed a bug around her pelvic area. When she tried to pull it off, she noticed that the area was swelling up and she got scared.

The picture of the bug was not clear enough, so I used Google lens to “magnify” it. Alas! it was a TICK. See attached photos…

There are many tick-borne diseases that can result from tick bites. One of them is Lyme’s disease. Therefore, it is important to avoid tick bites, or remove them as soon as possible.

Let’s discuss a few tips on how to deal with tick bites.

First of all, try as much as possible to avoid areas where ticks abound: dusty surfaces, dry wooden furniture, any open space such as your backyard or public parks.

When you play outdoors, cover your body with clothes or use tick-repellent creams. Dust your clothes and check carefully before wearing. Be careful how you spread your clothes outside.

Ticks are more common during the dry season. They are also found commonly on pets and free-grazing farm animals.

Tick-infested areas should be sprayed with pesticides containing a chemical called bifenthrin.

If you find a tick attached to your skin, simply remove the tick as soon as possible. There are several tick removal devices on the market, but a plain set of fine-tipped tweezers works very well.

Use a clean tweezer to grasp the tick as close to the skin’s surface as possible.

Pull upward with steady, even pressure. Don’t twist or jerk the tick; this can cause the mouth-parts to break off and remain in the skin. If this happens, remove the mouth-parts with tweezers. If you cannot remove the mouth easily with tweezers, leave it alone and let the skin heal.

After removing the tick, thoroughly clean the bite area and your hands with alcohol swab (rubbing alcohol or methylated spirit) or soap and water.

Never crush a tick with your fingers. Dispose of a live tick by:
*Putting it in methylated spirit,
*Placing it in a sealed bag/container,
*Wrapping it tightly in tape, or
*Flushing it down the toilet.

If you develop a rash, fever or muscle aches within a few days of removing a tick, please talk your doctor.

Tell the doctor about the recent tick bite, when the bite occurred, and where you most likely acquired the tick.

©Doctor KT

Reference: Centre For Disease Control and Prevention.

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