How to Remove Ticks

August 4, 2014 by | Be the first to comment »

For more than a century, doctors and researchers have investigated the dangers presented by ticks. They may carry several serious diseases that can be passed on to humans as they feed on their blood, such as Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain spotted fever. Most of these diseases are treatable, though they are unpleasant, so it’s always important to act quickly after seeing a tick on your skin.

Fortunately, there is a reliable method for removing ticks to minimize damage and risk of infection. Although you can purchase a tick removal kit, it’s not necessary. Moreover, it is best to avoid traditional remedies that involve coating the tick with petroleum jelly or nail polish to make it detach. They may work, but you’ll have to wait for the tick to detach. You’ll want something faster, and you probably already have what you need. In most instances, a set of tweezers is all that’s required.

Generally, fine tipped tweezers are the best ones for this task. The fine tips are essential for grasping the tick as close as possible to the skin’s surface. Pull up on the tweezers. Keep the movement smooth and steady. Twisting or jerking on the tweezers may only make the situation worse by ripping the tick’s body away from its mouth. This may mean that the mouth parts remain imbedded in the skin. Should this happen, it may be possible to remove the mouth parts with the tweezers. This is a delicate operation, and not always successful. Thus, it makes sense to exert a steady and even pressure as you bring the tweezers away from the skin.

Cleansing the wound is the next important step. Soap and water are effective, as are iodine and rubbing alcohol. Be sure to wash your hands thoroughly as well. Over the next several days and weeks, pay attention to how you’re feeling, being particularly alert to symptoms like rash and fever. These may indicate that you have contracted an illness from the tick bite, and medical care should be sought immediately.

Tick bites are a fairly common occurrence. By using this quick, reliable method, you can minimize your exposure to the illnesses that ticks frequently carry.

Melanie Swick (a.k.a. Survival Chick) grew up wanting to be a rocket scientist, but when she realized she that required way too much math, she took to her second dream—spending time in the wilderness. Today, when she's not hiking, camping, or hunting, she's blogging about it. You can connect with Melanie on Facebook.

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