What do you know about ticks? If you are like most people the answer is probably not that much. Many people are not aware of the potentially life threatening infectious diseases that can be caused by ticks. Ticks can truly change your life if you are not aware of what to look for after you have been bitten by one. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention said that Lyme disease, which is caused by ticks, is the most commonly reported vector-borne illness in the United States. They also said that thousands of Lyme disease cases go misdiagnosed and unreported. Stewart Termite & Pest Control wants to make sure that you are not one of those people.
Are Ticks Insects or Arachnids?
Most people think that ticks are insects. They are actually arachnids. As an arachnid they are more closely related to spiders than they are to flies or mosquitoes. Ticks have four pairs of legs just like a spider does too! Ticks have been around for at least 90 million years according to fossil records. There are over 800 species of ticks in the world. Only a few species of ticks actually spread diseases. In the United States, the blacklegged tick, or deer tick, is known to spread Lyme disease in the Northeast and parts of the Midwest. Wood ticks live in the Rocky Mountains. The Rocky Mountain tick can cause the Rocky Mountain spotted fever.
Tick Life Cycle
Ticks start out as eggs and will then go through three other life cycle stages. After the egg stage they will go to larva, then nymph, and finally adults. Depending on their species their life cycle takes about three months to one year to complete. They require a meal of blood to go through each stage of the life cycle successfully. Ticks will eventually die if they do not get a blood meal but they can survive a year or more without one. There are both soft and hard ticks. Hard ticks tend to attach and feed on their prey for hours to days. Soft ticks typically feed for less than an hour.
Tick Prevention for Humans, Dogs, Yard etc
Ticks are most prevalent from the months of April through September. People that go through grassy areas and woods are at a higher risk for tick bites. To help prevent tick bites, Stewart Termite & Pest Control recommends that you wear pants and closed toed shoes if you go out in grassy or wooded areas. You can also use a DEET-containing repellent to help keep ticks away from you. When you leave the grassy or wooded area you should check those in your group for ticks on their body.
Tick Bites; What does a Bite Look Like?
If you do get bitten by a tick most people do not ever see it. Typically the site of the tick bite is painless. It normally remains that way even after the tick stops the blood meal and falls off. Later you may develop itching, burning, redness, localized intense pain in the joints, rash, and shortness of breath, swelling, numbness, or paralysis. Sometimes they can also cause headache, confusion, and palpitations. If you think that you have possible been bitten by a tick you should go talk to a doctor. The treatment for a tick bite will depend on the type of tick that you may have been bitten by. Your doctor will be able to consult with you to help you in the best way possible.
Stewart Termite & Pest Control does not want to see any of our customers struggle with illness after a tick bite. We offer effective tick control services. Give us a call today and we can come out and ensure that your home or property is tick free.