Be Aware of Disease Carrying Ticks When Hiking

When Hiking, Being Cognizant of Ticks Can Prevent Lyme Disease

If you enjoy going for hikes in warm weather, it’s important to know as much as possible about ticks. These small pests can end up ruining your hike with their bites. Learning more about ticks can help you lower your risk of getting Lyme disease or other illnesses from these pests. Keep in mind that you can also encounter ticks in your own yard. If this happens, you’ll need to have Hilton Head area exterminators get rid of them for you.

Types of Ticks in SC

SC has several different kinds of ticks that can be a threat to people and pets. The blacklegged deer tick is one the types of ticks that can spread disease. These ticks carry Lyme disease, which they can spread to humans when they bite.

When you’re out hiking, you should keep an eye out for blacklegged deer ticks. These ticks are roughly 1/8 of an inch long and have a flat, oval body shape with dark legs. Other types of ticks in SC include lone star ticks, American dog ticks and brown dog ticks. Blacklegged deer ticks tend to be smaller than dog ticks.

Tick Prevention 

How can you keep yourself safe from ticks when you go outside this summer? There are several steps to follow, so that you’ll have a lower risk of being bitten by ticks while you’re hiking. Keep in mind that you’re likely to encounter ticks in areas with long grass, such as fields, although they’re common in wooded areas as well. You can protect yourself from ticks by doing the following:

• Cover up as much as possible: This reduces areas of exposed skin that ticks can latch onto. Wear shirts with long sleeves or a jacket, and put long pants on. You should also avoid walking around in open-toed shoes.

• Walk in the middle of hiking trails: Walking close to the edges puts you closer to vegetation that ticks could be hiding in. This makes it easier for them to jump onto you.

• Avoid wearing dark clothing: Doing this makes it difficult to spot ticks that might be on your clothes. Wear a light-colored outfit when you head out to go hiking.

• Apply bug spray: Put on spray that repels ticks before you go hiking. If you take your pets with you, make sure they also have a tick repellent product for protection.

• Check for ticks frequently: While hiking, stop and check your clothing and body for ticks every so often rather than waiting until you get home. The sooner you remove them, the less chance they have of biting and spreading disease.

Dealing with Ticks

What should you do if you find any ticks on you? Don’t crush them, or you risk having their mouthparts remain inside your skin. Gently pull ticks off you instead. Wash your hands after handling ticks, and clean the affected site if you have a tick bite. If you have any tick bites, which appear as a bite mark surrounded by a red bull’s eye, seek medical care. If you develop any symptoms of Lyme disease or other tick-borne illnesses after being bitten, make sure you see your doctor.

Keep in mind that you can lower your risk of having ticks in your yard by mowing your lawn and maintaining a tidy yard. This gives ticks fewer places to hide, which means they’re less likely to stay on your property. You should also have Hilton Head area exterminators inspect your property and treat your yard for ticks if you have any around.

If you’ve seen ticks in your yard, contact Island Pest Control today. Our skilled and experienced Hilton Head area exterminators can get these pests out of your yard, so you don’t have to worry about being bitten.