It’s Tick Season Already And It’s More Dangerous Than Ever
April 21st, 2017 by Mike MacDonald in Ticks
With temperatures steadily on the rise, and with most of us starting to become more active outdoors, it’s important to know ticks are becoming more active as well despite it being so early in the year.
Ticks don’t just die off in the winter, they just go into hiding
A lot of people think that ticks just die off in the winter, and that’s actually not the case. Ticks can remain active all winter long and many tend to hide under leave piles and underbrush left as snow started to fall in the winter.
Ticks will often even come out when temperatures climb above freezing over the winter. For each stage of the life cycle ticks go through, a feeding from a host is required beforehand.
This means that the ticks who missed getting a meal and finding a host towards the end of summer and fall will be much more desperate and active to find a meal and new host in the spring time.
As we start to venture out more as the warmer weather begins in spring, it’s important to pay attention and be on the lookout for ticks on you or your pets. There are different kinds of ticks to worry about, but the deer tick is the most dangerous.
These ticks are smaller but also tend to crawl under your clothes if they get onto you making them extra difficult to find. It’s recommended to avoid taller grass and wooded areas and keep your pets out of such areas as well.
A couple prevention steps you can take if you are going into the woods or tall grasses is to tuck your pants into your socks, and also spray your shoes with bug repellent.
The biggest thing is keeping these ticks away from your skin so they can’t bite you. Also be sure to thoroughly check yourself over to remove any ticks that may have gotten on you while in the woods.
Ticks don’t just suck your blood they can also carry a variety of dangerous diseases
The most common disease we hear about that deer ticks carry is Lyme disease. This disease can cause symptoms similar to the flu, such as headaches, muscle aches, fever, and fatigue. Unfortunately Lyme disease can cause many more issues and long term problems if left untreated.
Lyme disease is also very difficult to diagnose and requires several tests. Antibiotics can usually fix the issues if they are treated soon enough, but a lot of times it ins’t properly diagnosed quickly enough to avoid other more advanced symptoms.
Luckily most tick bites don’t transfer Lyme disease immediately, and it can take up to 48 hours of being attached to you or your pet before the disease is transferred. This further emphasizes the importance of immediately removing any ticks you find as well as focusing on prevention of any tick bites before they happen.
There’s a new tick borne disease on the rise in Minnesota and Wisconsin to watch out for
According to local Minnesota news station WCCO “Mayo Clinic researchers have identified a new tick-borne disease in Minnesota and Wisconsin. Doctors say it’s just as serious as Lyme disease, but harder to detect.
The newly discovered bacterial strain is called Ehrlichiosis, which is spread by tiny deer ticks — the same ticks that carry Lyme disease.”
Unfortunately, this new disease takes effect immediately when you are bitten rather than how Lyme disease can take up to 48 hours to be transferred to you from a bite. This makes it especially important to be careful when you are treading out into the woods and letting your pets run free this spring and summer.
The process for treatment is highly similar to Lyme disease where antibiotics can be administered for treatment, but diagnosing this disease seems to be just as tough if not tougher since there isn’t a rash that appears and symptoms tend to be almost immediate.
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