We love our outdoor lifestyle and as such spend lots of time doing outdoor activities such as camping, hiking and outdoor sports or just walking and enjoying our wonderful nature in all its glory.
Spending lots of time in nature, we will inevitably come across ticks that climb to the tops of grass, sticking out one leg that they use to catch a ride on an animal or a human passing by that have lots of blood to share with these parasites.
Ticks like hairy areas and skin clefts to position themselves for a blood fest, but can be found on any part of the body.
Only the ‘scrub tick’ or ‘Paralysis’ tick causes envenomation in humans. Ticks can also spread diseases like Scrub Typhus.
Signs and Symptoms of Envenomation
Lethargy and fever
Muscle weakness and unsteady when walking.
Double vision with difficulty in swallowing and breathing.
Signs and symptoms develop over several days but an allergic reaction can occur within an hour of being bitten.
What to do:
Check the whole body of the victim for ticks that might still be feeding.
Remove all remaining ticks by gripping the tick with a tweezer as close to the skin as possible. Put gentle pressure on the tick and pull up with a constant force until the tick releases. Do not pull too hard as the tick’s head or mouth parts will break off and you will have to remove the broken off parts with the tweezer. If you cannot remove the broken off parts of the tick, seek medical help. The tick will release on his own if you just pull with a constant force for about 4-10 seconds.
Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water.
Clean the bite site with rubbing alcohol, iodine scrub or soap and water.
- Do not twist the tick when removing it with a tweezer, the mouth parts will break off and be left behind in the victim’s skin.
- Do not try to burn the tick.
- Never crush the tick with your fingers.
- Place the tick in an air tight container and send along with the patient to the doctor for medical advice and further treatment.
- Keep the victim under observation for several days to make sure treatment is working.
General Symptoms of Tick-Borne Disease
- Flu-like fever, headache and fatigue.
- Rash, Lyme and STARI (bulls eye rash)
- Tick Paralysis – ascending paralysis