2018-06-13 / Front Page

Beware Of Tick, Mosquito Bites


Ticks feed on the blood of mammals, birds, and sometimes reptiles and amphibians. A person who gets bitten by a tick may not feel anything, although there might be a little redness around the area.– photo courtesy trekohio.com Ticks feed on the blood of mammals, birds, and sometimes reptiles and amphibians. A person who gets bitten by a tick may not feel anything, although there might be a little redness around the area.– photo courtesy trekohio.com With the arrival of the warm days of summer, everyone and everything is more active– including ticks and mosquitoes.

Ticks and mosquitoes are more than just a nuisance. They carry diseases ranging from Lyme disease to West Nile Virus.

Last year, there were 34 cases of illnesses caused by the West Nile virus, including five deaths in Ohio.

Clint Koenig, medical director of the Ohio Department of Health, said in a press release there are simple precautions people can take to avoid tick and mosquito bites.

He recommends people who become ill after being bitten by a tick or a mosquito see their healthcare provider, particularly if they have symptoms like fever, headache, nausea, vomiting, joint pain, muscle aches, fatigue or a rash.

To avoid being bitten by ticks when outdoors, ODH officials recommend walking in the middle of trails. Avoid tall grass, brush, and leaf litter.

Wear long pants, long sleeves and long socks. Tuck pant legs into socks.

Clothing and gear such as pants, boots, socks, and tents can be treated with a product containing permethrin, an instecticide, and can be purchased pre-treated.

Permethrin should not be applied to the skin.

There are Environmental Protection Agency-registered repellents labeled for use against ticks on skin. Follow label directions.

Wear light colors, so if a tick does get on your clothing, it’s easy to see.

After spending time in areas that may contain ticks, ODH officials say to check yourself, children and pets for ticks.

If a tick is found attached to the body, use fine-tipped tweezers to grasp the tick as close the skin’s surface as possible. Pull it away from the skin with a steady, even pressure.

Don’t twist or jerk the tick. This can cause the tick’s mouth parts to break off in the skin.

If the tick does break, use clean tweezers to remove the parts. If they can’t be reached, leave the area alone and let the skin heal.

There are several folk remedies for removing ticks, from using hot matches to nail polish. ODH officials say not to use them, “as these methods do not work.”

Dispose of live ticks by one of several methods; putting the tick in alcohol, placing it in a sealed bag or container, wrapping it tightly in tape, or flushing it down a toilet. Never crush it between your fingers.

ODH officials say to wash your hands and a bite area with soap and water.

Mosquitoes

Some mosquitoes bite during daylight, others at dusk and dawn.

ODH officials recommend EPA-registered repellents, used according to label instructions.

Mosquitoes may bite through thin clothing, so spraying clothes with an EPA-registered repellent will provide added protection.

ODH tips to mosquitoproof homes include installing or repairing screens on windows and doors and eliminating standing water around the home.

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