Ticks spread a number of serious illnesses. In the news there have been reports of SFTS, which is spread by the East Asian Tick that was recently introduce to United States. Currently, this tick is only found in the New Jersey area, and it is not in the Arlington area. However, the tick is expected to spread throughout the United States since it is extremely invasive. The experts are predicting a record tick season in Virginia, which increases your chances of contracting an illness from a tick. There are things that you can do to protect your family from SFTS and other tick-borne illnesses.
Protect Your Yard
One of the best ways to protect your family is to have a tick treatment applied to your yard. This will kill the ticks that are there and also creates a barrier around your yard that will stop ticks from wandering in. Getting rid of any leaf litter in your yard also helps, as does keeping your lawn short.
When you go into areas that are prone to ticks, it is important to dress appropriately. You can do this by wearing long sleeves and long pants. When you tuck your shirt in and your pants into your socks, you give the ticks fewer places that they can come into contact with your skin. Once you leave an area that has ticks, you should check your clothing, because you may be able to brush off any ticks that are on your clothing before they have the chance to attach.
Wear Insect Repellent
Insect repellent is very good at stopping ticks from biting you. DEET is the most effective treatment for ticks. It comes in a number of different strengths. Once your child is two months old, it is safe to use insect repellent up to 25% DEET. If you are older, you can use 40% or higher if you know you will be spending an extended period of time in area with ticks. Be sure to reapply according the package directions.
Check for Ticks
It is important to regularly check for ticks. You should check under your arms, between your legs and behind your knees for ticks. You should also check around your hairline and in your ears. The sooner you find and remove a tick the better. This is because the ticks spread the disease when the regurgitate. If you find a tick, remove it with a pair of tweezers by pulling straight back. Never using gasoline, rubbing alcohol or Vaseline because this will cause the tick to regurgitate into your skin and it will increase the chances of you getting sick.