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Tick Time: Northwoods Has High Amount Of Lyme Disease

Wikimedia Commons Stuart Meek

We look forward to summer weather, but with the warming temperatures some unwanted hitchikers also arrive on the scene.

"...the incidents of Lyme Disease has gone up exponentially in the area so it's considered endemic in Oneida county because there is so much of it, so, just be watchful..."

...that's Oneida County Public Health Nurse Dawn Klink. As ticks emerge from the cold weather months, she reminds the public that a number of diseases besides Lyme Disease are also possible from the bite of a variety of ticks...

"....they should be concerned about getting a tick-borne disease, Lyme is the most common, there are other ones....are concerns outside during the summer...."

Typical symptoms include fever, headache, fatigue, and a characteristic skin rash. If left untreated, infection can spread to joints, the heart, and the nervous system. Klink says when you head out, take precautions...

"....when outdoors were a long-sleeved shirt, pants, high socks, with cuffs tucked into the socks. Light colored clothin so you can see them. They look like little black dots. Walk in the center of trails, try not to brush against plants. Make sure you wear insect repellent. 20-30 percent DEET. Follow the manufacturer's direction and make sure none of the stuff you use is expired...."

Klink says the best way to remove a tick is to use a pair of tweezers and grasp the head of the bug and gently remove it. She says the old-school remedies of using a match and Vaseline don't work.

More information on ticks, Lyme and other tick-borne diseases and what to do about it is at the Centers For Disease Control website.

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