If you’re out in tall grass, in the woods, or going through reeds or other foliage near a beach, you must check yourself for ticks. If a tick gets into your body and goes undetected, the worst-case scenario is you could be infected with Lyme’s Disease.
If caught early, a cure is possible; if not, it is a chronic illness that affects your joints but is still treatable. Not all ticks carry Lyme’s Disease, but for the sake of your health, you should assume they all do. Here are some tips to prevent ticks from clinging to your body and how to get rid of them if they do:
Wear proper clothing
Ticks tend to hang out on low branches and in the grass. When someone walks by and brushes up against the foliage, the ticks fall off and cling to the person’s clothing. They eventually try to make their way to open skin and start sucking blood.
Since they are parasites, they need to feed off another living being to survive. You can prevent them from getting on your skin by wearing covered shoes and pulling long socks over your pants.
Have a friend check your body for ticks
The best way to prevent ticks from burying themselves in your skin is to catch them early. After you’re out in the woods, have a friend check your body for ticks. Then, head into the bathroom or the shower and do a full body check yourself. Run your fingers through your hair to check your scalp, that’s the usual spot for ticks to go unnoticed.
Removing a tick from a human
If a tick is visible on your body, chances are it has begun to dig its way into your body but isn’t entirely in. It’s bitten through your skin, and its head is buried beneath your skin, but part of it is still sticking out. The first thing you should do is pour some rubbing alcohol onto the tick.
This will numb it and help it to loosen its grip on you. Then you’ll need to sterilize a pair of tweezers by holding them over an open flame. Bury the tweezers as far into your skin as possible, making sure you remove the head and the entire tick. If you pull out the part that’s sticking out, the tick can still survive and get into your body.
Removing a tick from a dog
Removing a tick from a dog is similar to removing it from a human, but a little more tricky. Since dogs are covered with hair (some more than others), it’s more challenging to see what you’re doing. It’s not a bad idea to shave your dog’s hair in the area where you’ve found the tick.
Repeat the same process as above for removing it and check your dog once a day for the next couple of days to make sure an infection doesn’t develop. As long as you clean the wound with some peroxide, it should be fine. While you’re here read our article on getting rid of Spider mites.