How to Stay in Control when A Tick Bites

Author: Mosquito Squad of Chelmsford & Cambridge

You come inside from a day in the yard where the kids were playing games and climbing trees while you were gardening.  As a precaution, you check the kids for ticks and make them take showers upon coming indoors.  Too exhausted, you end up falling asleep on the couch.  The next day you scratch behind your ear, only to find a tick embedded in your skin.  What do you do now?  How do you remove the tick?  How do you know if the tick carries a disease?

This Spring, Massachusetts is seeing more adult deer ticks that have survived through the winter.  The black-legged deer tick is the primary carrier of Lyme Disease in the Chelmsford area.  These ticks will acquire blood meals from hosts through the season.  When there are more adult ticks, there will be more nymph ticks later in the season.  Nymph ticks are often the ones that carry disease.

Three tick-borne diseases are most common in our Middlesex County area are Lyme Disease, Anaplasmosis and Babesiosis.  It is important that our residents use proper tick control measures to protect themselves from tick-borne diseases.  Mosquito Squad of Chelmsford & Cambridge has highly effective tick control programs to keep your family and pets safe within your own yard.  If you are unable to avoid a tick bite in an unprotected area, there is a proper way to remove the tick from your skin.

Mosquito Squad has paired with the CDC for easy to follow instructions on how to safely and  properly remove a tick that is attached to you.  Old rumored remedies of painting the tick with nail polish or using heat in order to get a tick to detach are unnecessary.  You should use a pair of fine tipped tweezers to grasp the tick as close to the skin as possible.  A steady upward motion should be used to pull the tick from the skin. Be careful not to agitate the tick or leave the head attached if the tick has become embedded.  Clean the bite area thoroughly with alcohol or soap and water.

Residents in our area are fortunate to have a tick testing center through the UMass Amherst Center for Agriculture.  The center offers analysis for up to ten different tick-borne diseases.  If you are interested in having a tick tested, place it in a moistened paper towel inside of a sealed container or zip-lock bag and send the tick in the mail.  Results are sent out within 1-2 weeks.  Please understand that symptoms of most tick-borne illnesses will show within a few days of a bite.  See a doctor if you have any signs like rash and fever before the tick test results are returned.

To drastically reduce your risk of contracting a tick-borne illness on your property, have it treated by a tick control professional.  Call Mosquito Squad of Chelmsford & Cambridge today for a free quote at (978) 381-4028.