We are grateful for the many different benefits of the summer season, but not for the increase in bugs and insects. Any time you spend time outside running around in the grass or in the woods on a hike, it is important that you check yourself for ticks afterward.
Ticks are at their peak from spring to early fall, so recognizing them and removing them from your clothes should always be your first priority after spending time outdoors. While not all tick bites are dangerous, some can cause you to develop Lyme disease.
Our AFC Urgent Care Tyvola Road team breaks down tick bites and what symptoms to watch for that indicate Lyme disease, so read on to learn more.
What Should I Do if I Find a Tick on Me?
Get it off! If the tick is still crawling around on you, simply pick it off and dispose of it and then wash your hands. If it has already embedded in your skin, you should grab a tweezers and work on getting it out. Ticks that are carrying Lyme disease have to be attached to you for at least 36 hours to transmit the disease to you, so the time is literally ticking.
Remember, not all ticks are carrying the disease, but there is no way of knowing in the moment if the one on your skin is infected. In most cases, the redness and irritation will go away after the tick has been removed and that will be it.
Removing a Tick From Your Skin
- Use a clean tweezers and pull slowly and steadily away from the skin.
- Do not twist as you pull.
- Take a picture of the tick.
- Dispose in the garbage in a piece of tape or flush in the toilet.
- Wash your hands and the bite site thoroughly.
How Common Is Lyme Disease?
About 30,000 people contract Lyme disease in any given year in the United States. Considering over 300 million people live in this country, the odds are in your favor! Keep in mind that Lyme disease symptoms can take up to a month to appear, so try to relax and just keep an eye on how you feel.
If you discover a growing bulls-eye rash around the bite site, experience body stiffness or aches or a fever with a headache, come see us. Lyme disease is rarely fatal, but failing to treat your symptoms can leave you with chronic pain and fatigue.
Indications That an AFC Visit Is Required
- You can’t remove the entire tick on your own
- Your rash gets bigger or looks like a bulls-eye
- Flu-like symptoms appear
- Signs of infection appear, like pus or redness and swelling
If you are ever worried about an animal or insect bite, come see us at AFC Urgent Care Tyvola Road.