As temperatures around Atlanta GA rise, so do the numbers of tick populations in the area. These pests remerge in the spring and summer, seeking out animals from which to engorge themselves with blood. Not only do they bite us and our pets, they can also pass along formidable illnesses such as Rocky Mountain spotted fever, Tularemia, and the dreaded Lyme disease. It is smart to prepare yourself for tick season by learning the proper techniques to safely remove them from your body and others’.
How to Identify a Tick
For starters, you should know what ticks look like. There are three main tick species in Atlanta GA:
- Lone star tick: With characteristically long mouthparts and a white-spotted back, the lone star tick is easy to identify. They are often found in brushy areas where deer and other small mammals live.
- American dog tick: These ticks are of about the same size and shape as the lone star tick, but are darker in colour and have smaller mouthparts. American dog ticks are the most common offender in terms of tick bites on dogs.
- Deer tick: The deer tick is smaller and darker than the other two mentioned. It feasts on small rodents and birds, but can become ambitious enough to seek out humans.
Each one of these tick species is capable of carrying diseases. If you find one on your skin, try to remove it as soon as possible.
Safely Removing Ticks
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention recommends the following steps to safely remove a tick:
- Use a thin pair of tweezers to pinch the tick as closely as possible to the skin’s surface.
- Pull the tick upward steadily and slowly. If you twist or bend during retraction, the tick’s mouthparts could break off in your skin. If this happens, simply use the tweezers to remove them as well.
- Once the tick is out, clean the site of the bite with soap and water or rubbing alcohol.
- Dispose of the tick by flushing it, placing it in a sealed trash can, or placing it in alcohol. Do not crush it with your hands.
Following these instructions immediately after noticing your tick bite will minimize your chances of contracting a disease. If you start to experience fevers or rashes within the next few weeks, tell your doctor about where and when you believe you were bitten.
Getting Rid of Ticks in Atlanta GA
If you’ve dealt with multiple tick bites already this season, it might be time to talk to your local pest control company. The tick experts at Active Pest Control can further educate you on what kinds of ticks might be in your area and what you can do to avoid them. Contact us today for a free tick extermination quote!
How to Safely Remove a Tick in Georgia
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