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Ticks are a highly unpleasant pest to encounter, and a bite by one of these insects can pose more dangers than you know. It is essential to understand ticks and bite warning signs to avoid any adverse effects from a tick bite.

tick biting a finger

The Dangers of Tick Bites

There are several tick species common to the Houston area. It is essential to look out for these ticks and understand the difference between them, as each one poses a slightly different risk:

 

Lone Star Tick: This tick has a brownish body and a single white or yellow mark on its back. It is a known carrier for Southern tick-associated rash illness (STARI), which causes an allergy to red meat. This tick can also transfer tularemia or ehrlichiosis.

 

Black-legged Tick: With black legs and a black body (though females have an orange crescent on their back), the black-legged tick is notorious for transmitting the dangerous Lyme disease to humans.

 

Brown Dog Tick: This tick has a dark brown body and brown legs and exclusively feeds on dogs. It can transfer ehrlichiosis, babesiosis, and Rocky Mountain spotted fever to either you or your pet.

 

American Dog Tick: Brown in color with yellow or grey markings on its back, this tick prefers animals but will bite humans. It can also transmit Rocky Mountain spotted fever.

 

If you find a tick on yourself, you will want to take the following steps to ensure the safe removal and a limited number of side effects:

  • Clean a pair of fine-point tweezers and grasp the tick as close to your skin’s surface as possible. This will give you the best grip.

  • Pull upward on the tick in a steady motion using even pressure. You should not jerk or twist the tick, and you should try your hardest not to crush or puncture the tick’s body.

  • Once you have the tick removed, clean the bite area and your hands with soap and water.

  • Dispose of the tick’s body by either flushing it down the toilet, wrapping it in tape, putting it in alcohol, or placing it into a sealed bag and throwing it away.

  • Monitor the bite area for signs of infection or other warning signs that may indicate the tick has passed along something more serious to you.

Warning Signs to Look Out For

After removing any tick from your body, you should watch for the following warning signs. If any of the following symptoms occur, you should be seeking medical attention immediately. You should also seek medical attention after a tick bite if you have a known allergy to insect or tick bites and experience any symptoms of anaphylaxis:

  • Pain, swelling, or a burning sensation at the bitten area

  • Blisters

  • A rash or a red spot near the bitten area, or a full-body rash

  • Neck stiffness

  • Headaches

  • Difficulty breathing

  • Nausea

  • Weakness

  • Muscle or joint pain or aches

  • Fever

  • Chills

  • Swollen lymph nodes

Professional Tick Control

Ticks can hide out around your property and may pose a significant risk to either you or your pets. Besides keeping your pets up to date with any tick prevention medications, the best way to control tick populations around your property is with professional assistance. Contact the experts at All-Safe Pest & Termite for further tick control advice and assistance. We utilize green pest control solutions and offer prompt service. Call today for a free estimate.

Tags: dangers of ticks | common ticks | avoiding ticks |

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