Highly aggressive and known to travel long distances in pursuit of its host, Beaufort County pest control companies get lots of calls about the lone star tick. However there remains a lot of confusion about this troublesome tick, particularly whether or not it’s a host for Lyme disease.

Does the Lone Star Tick Carry Lyme Disease?
According to the CDC, the lone star tick does NOT transmit Lyme disease. It does, however, transmit:

A bacterial illness transmitted by ticks that causes flu-like symptoms.

Swelling of regional lymph glands, usually in the armpit or groin, and sometimes a skin ulcer at the site of the bite.

STARI (Southern Tick-Associated Rash Illness)
Symptoms include fatigue, fever, headache, muscle and joint pains, sometimes accompanied by a circular rash, similar to Lyme disease. This adds to the confusion as to whether or not the lone star tick is a carrier. The syndrome is not linked to arthritis, neurologic disease, or other chronic symptoms (as is Lyme).

Identifying Marks (to Distinguish Possibility of Lyme Disease)
Adult female ticks are distinguished by a white dot or “lone star” on the back, however males and nymphs do not bear this marking. All forms, however, will feed on humans and are commonly found on animals, including pets. Their saliva is quite irritating and although those bitten may experience redness or discomfort this does not necessarily indicate an infection.

Nonetheless, monitor health closely after any tick bite, consulting your doctor if any of the above signs present within 30 days of the bite.

Reducing Exposure
Avoiding dense woods and brush can help you prevent exposure, as will repellants with DEET and permethrin, and prompt tick-checks after outdoor activity. Residential, exterior pest treatments can also reduce tick numbers.

Don’t let tiny ticks become a big problem. Tackle them with the largest of locally-owned and operated Beaufort County pest control companies. Contact the experts at Island Pest Control today.