Is Lyme Disease Treatable
Yes. Lyme disease responds well to antibiotics and is curable.
Most symptoms resolve quickly after the start of antibiotics, however, it can occasionally take weeks or months for all symptoms to completely subside.
The number of days of antibiotics required depends on the symptoms present at the time of diagnosis-a typical course of antibiotics is 2-4 weeks.
What Should You Do If You Find A Tick
Don’t touch the tick with your bare hand.
Use a pair of tweezers to remove the tick. Grab the tick firmly by its mouth or head as close to your skin as possible.
Pull up slowly and steadily without twisting until it lets go. Don’t squeeze the tick, and don’t use petroleum jelly, solvents, knives, or a lit match to kill the tick.
Save the tick. Place it in a plastic container or bag so it can be tested for disease, if needed.
Wash the bite area well with soap and water and put an antiseptic lotion or cream on the site.
What Kind Of Ticks Spread Lyme Disease
What kind of ticks spread lyme diseaseLinks with this icon indicate that you are leaving the CDC website, The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention cannot attest to the accuracy of a non-federal website. Linking to a non-federal website does not constitute an endorsement by CDC or any of its employees of the sponsors or the information and products presented on the website.
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When To Seek Medical Help
If you develop a rash after being exposed to ticks, you can draw around the rash with a pen and take a photo. This way, you can check if the rash expands.
- The rash is 5 cm in diameter or larger
- The rash lasts more than 48 hours
- You believe you have one or more other symptoms of Lyme disease within days, weeks or months after engaging in outdoor activities where you may be exposed to ticks
If you have noted a bite, provide the information you noted concerning the bite:
- The part of the body that was bitten
- The date and the place you were when you were bitten
If you consult a doctor, bring the tick, if possible, in a closed container such as a pill container.
Ticks And Lyme Disease What You Need To Know
- May 15th, 2020
Tick bites are common and with the increasing prevalence of Lyme disease in our area, tick bites cause a lot of worry for parents and children. If you or your child gets a tick bite dont panic, it is important to make note of the size, color, and shape of the tick and to remove the tick promptly.
Our patients and their parents have been asking a lot of excellent questions about tick bites and Lyme disease. Please find the answers to these frequently asked questions below and call us with any questions or concerns.
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Ticks In British Columbia
There are more than 20 species of ticks in British Columbia, but only three species normally bite humans. Although the bites are sometimes painful and slow healing, there is little danger of disease as long as they are removed promptly.
Adult ticks have eight legs, unlike insects, which have six. Ticks cannot jump or fly and do not drop from trees. They require blood as a source of protein for growth and egg development. A few simple precautions will decrease the likelihood of tick bites.
Learn more about ticks that are commonly found in B.C., how to remove attached ticks, and how to prevent tick bites:
How Do I Know If I Have A Tick Bite
Many people who develop the disease do not remember seeing ticks or being bitten. Tick bites commonly occur from May to September in North America, although blacklegged ticks can be active most of the year. Ticks sometimes move around on the body but they usually attach themselves to the skin and stay in one place. Before feeding, ticks look like small, brown scabs or freckles. After feeding, ticks may swell considerably, and could be as big as a raisin or a small grape.
Follow the link for more information about blacklegged ticks from the Government of Canada.
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What To Do If You Do Get Bitten
1. Don’t panic. It’s a hard rule to follow, Pritt admits, but remember that not every tick carries a harmful bacteria or virus.
2. Forget the folk remedies: “Grab a pair of fine tipped tweezers, remove as quickly as possible as close to skin as you can by pulling it out in a smooth, continuous motion without twisting it,” Pritt says. And don’t light a match or roll it in butter, as in fact, those methods often result in only partial removal.
3. Save it: Put the tick in a plastic bag in the freezer, especially if you think it may have been attached a long time, which may increase the risk of Lyme disease transmission. That way if you decide to see a doctor, they’ll be able to identify the type of tick that bit you, and even test it for disease-causing bacteria. Keep in mind, though, that you may not get infected even if the tick tests positive, Dempsey says.
4. Watch for symptoms: A rash, headache, flu-like symptoms and joint pain can all be signs of Lyme disease, anaplasmosis and ehrlichiosis. A stiff neck and swollen lymph nodes are associated with Lyme disease.
IF YOU HAVE SYMPTOMS: Many people with Lyme disease don’t remember getting a rash or a tick bite. So mention your concerns to your health care provider. Blood tests may be able to detect Lyme disease after your body has developed antibodies.
How To Identify Ticks
Ticks belong to the same class as spiders and mites, characterized by having four pairs of legs and no antennae. Most are external parasites on mammals, birds, and reptiles and known vectors of various diseases to both humans and animals, domestic and wild. Ticks fall into two families, hard and soft ticks. Both categories flourish throughout North America, though the most commonly occurring types in Canada are hard ticks.
Types of Ticks in Canada
With over 850 species of ticks identified worldwide, the parasites may enter homes when feeding on household pets, which is particularly common with dogs. While some species may not survive indoors, some species such as brown dog ticks are capable of surviving and breeding indoors. Common tick species found throughout Canada include the black-legged tick, more commonly known as the deer tick, the brown dog tick, the American dog tick, and the Rocky Mountain wood tick.
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What Are The Clinical Signs Of Lyme Disease
Some people with Lyme disease develop a characteristic bull’s-eye rash at the site of the bite within three to thirty days. If this occurs, the disease can be easily diagnosed at an early stage.
However, signs of Lyme disease are more difficult to detect in animals than in people. The characteristic rash does not develop in dogs or cats. In fact, Lyme disease is practically unheard of in cats.
“Affected dogs have been described as if they were walking on eggshells.”
Many dogs affected with Lyme disease are taken to a veterinarian because they seem to be experiencing generalized pain and have stopped eating. Affected dogs have been described as if they were walking on eggshells. Often these pets have high fevers. Dogs may also begin limping. This painful lameness often appears suddenly and may shift from one leg to another. If untreated, it may eventually disappear, only to recur weeks or months later.
Some pets are infected with the Lyme disease organism for over a year before they finally show symptoms. By this time, the disease may be widespread throughout the body. Non-specific signs which may indicate that Lyme disease is affecting the kidneys include vomiting, lethargy, anorexia , and weight loss. The kidney form of the disease is less common, but often fatal.
What Diseases Can The Ticks Found In Maine Carry
- The deer tick , also known as the black-legged tick, is the primary vector of Lyme disease,, anaplasmosis, babesiosis, and Borreliamiyamotoi . Deer ticks are also a vector for Powassan virus,, a potentially deadly form of encephalitis.
- American dog ticks can transmit Rocky Mountain spotted fever and tularemia. Ticks in Maine are not known to carry Rocky Mountain spotted fever or tularemia.
- The woodchuck tick can transmit Powassan virus.,
- The lone star tick can transmit Ehrlichia chaffeensis and Ehrlichia ewingii , tularemia, and STARI. The lone star ticks are moving north and are not fully established in Maine.
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What Can A Workplace Or Home Do To Reduce The Presence Of Ticks
Keep the lawn and yard well maintained to prevent ticks from living near the home or workplace.
- Keep the grass mowed. Trim trees and shrubs.
- Remove leaf litter, brush, and weeds at the edge of the lawn, and around stonewalls and woodpiles.
- Clean up and seal stonewalls and small openings around the home to help discourage rodents.
- Keep stacked firewood piles and bird feeders away from buildings.
- Keep any pets, particularly dogs, out of the woods and talk to your veterinarian about tick repellents for your pets.
- Move children’s swing sets and sandboxes away from the woodland’s edge and use a woodchip or mulch foundation.
- Consider using hard landscape items such as woodchips, mulch, stones, gravel, tile, or metals.
- Create a border or barrier between the lawn, woods, or stonewalls to discourage deer and rodent activity.
- Widen woodland trails.
What Is Disseminated Lyme Disease
- This is when the bacteria that causes Lyme disease spreads throughout your body.
- This can occur within days to months after the tick bite.
- Symptoms include:
- Multiple erythema migrans rashes.,
- Nervous system involvement .,
- Heart involvement .,
- Connective tissue involvement .,
- Eye involvement .,
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What You Need To Know About Lyme Disease
Lyme disease is an infection caused by the spiral-shaped bacteria Borrelia burgdorferi, which is most commonly transmitted by a tick bite.
There are over 300,000 estimated new cases of Lyme disease in the United States each year.
The symptoms of Lyme disease depend on the how long the infection has been present in the body. The first sign of Lyme disease is often an expanding round or oval red “bullseye” rash.
If left untreated, people may develop neurological symptoms and heart problems, and have an approximately 60 percent chance of developing Lyme arthritis.
How To Avoid Getting Bitten
To avoid a tick encounter, you’ll want to be vigilant about taking precautions whenever you’re spending a significant amount of time outdoors in tick territory, whether you’re hiking or mowing your lawn. Fortunately, the same prevention techniques work for all types of ticks, Pritt says:
1. Get dorky: Repelling ticks starts with your outfit. Choose long sleeves and pants if possible. “And it may feel dorky, but tucking your pants into your socks gives ticks less access into the areas they can bite,” says Pritt, who wears white coveralls and duct-tapes the legs to her socks when going on tick drags. Spray exposed skin with a good repellent. And treat clothes likely to be worn in tick habitat ahead of time with a permethrin repellent for the greatest protection.
2. Strip: After your adventure – even if it’s just mowing the lawn – the easiest way to make sure ticks stay outside is to disrobe as soon as possible shed all your clothes on a porch before going inside to keep any hangers-on outside if possible jump in the shower, check for ticks and scrub. Remember that disease-carrying ticks can be tiny: at the nymph stage, when it’s likely to bite you, a black-legged tick is the size of a poppy seed. Don’t forget about pets and kids. Check them for ticks outside otherwise, a tick can fall off a dog inside and bite you.
3. Disinfect: Throw discarded clothes into the dryer on high heat for at least six minutes to kill any stragglers.
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Tick Identification In Niagara
Due to COVID-19, tick submissions are suspended. If you have a tick you would like identified, visit etick.ca for a quick identification resource. For more information, call the Info-Line at 905-688-8248, press 7, then press 3 or toll-free at 1-888-505-6074.
A tick is very small and can range in size from a poppy seed to a small grape . They do not jump or fly.
Ticks are normally found in forested areas or areas with long grass, where they attach themselves to humans and animals passing by.
On humans, ticks normally attach to areas such as the groin, armpits, hairline or behind the ears.
Which Ticks Carry Lyme Disease
There are hundreds of different kinds of ticks throughout the world. The Ixodes tick, commonly called a black-legged tick, are ticks that carry Lyme disease. In the eastern and mid-western U.S, the primary species is Ixodes scapularis and the related western U.S. version is the Ixodes pacificus .
These ticks that carry Lyme disease can also carry bacterial co-infections, such as Babesiosis, Ehrlichiosis, and Anaplasmosis. While Lyme disease is the most common infection from a tick, co-infections can complicate ones Lyme disease diagnosis and treatment. Learn more about ticks and the other diseases they can cause in the U.S.
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Diseases Transmitted By Ticks
In the United States, some ticks carry pathogens that can cause human disease, including:
This list shows the most common tickborne diseases outside the United States, but does not list every disease.
Note: Anaplasmosis, babesiosis, ehrlichiosis, tularemia, tickborne relapsing fever, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, and Powassan disease can also be acquired internationally.
What Kind Of Tick Carries Lyme
There are multiple species of ticks that carry the bacteria, and “do all ticks carry Lyme disease” is a common question. In fact, only a few species are known to pass it along to humans. Of the ticks that carry Lyme disease, the blacklegged tick, also called a deer tick or Lyme disease tick, is the worst offender.
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Blacklegged Tick Life Cycle
Blacklegged ticks live for about two to three years. Most of their life is spent out in the environment rather than on a host or in a hosts nest. During their entire lifetime, they will only have up to three blood meals. The picture below shows that the life cycle begins when the female lays eggs. As the egg matures, it develops into a larva , then a nymph and finally, an adult male or female .
In the spring of their first year, eggs hatch into larvae. Larvae prefer to feed on blood from small mammals, like mice and birds. Larvae have one feeding then molt into nymphs and rest until the next spring. During this first meal, the larva may pick up a disease agent while feeding on a small mammal, such as a white-footed mouse.
Late in the spring of their second year, nymphs take their second feeding. Nymphs arent as picky with their choice of host and will feed on blood from small or large mammals, such as white-tailed deer or humans. At this time, if the nymph is infected with a disease agent then it could spread the disease agent to a human or animal that it feeds on.
This picture shows each of the life stages of the blacklegged tick: adult female, adult male, nymph, and larva. It also shows the relative sizes and patterns of the blacklegged tick, lone star tick, and American dog tick.
Animal Hosts That Carry Lyme Disease
While ticks might be the vector for infecting humans with Lyme disease, the bacteria responsible for the infection doesnt actually originate in ticks.
Instead, ticks pick up the Borrelia burgdorferi bacteria from other animal hosts, and then pass it on to humans later. While deer are one of the most common sources of the bacteria , both nymphs and adult ticks can be found feeding on the following animals:
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How To Prevent Ticks
The easiest way to manage tick infestations over large areas consists of proper landscaping techniques to exclude and provide an unsuitable environment for tick survival. Keeping grass mowed, getting rid of all leaf and weed litter, trimming tree branches, and managing pet activity may lead to less interaction with ticks. For serious tick infestations, various insecticidal treatments exist and may be purchased at local hardware stores or retail chains that carry such products. Since ticks carry possibly dangerous bacteria and viruses, anyone entering areas that may contain ticks should aim to protect themselves by wearing proper clothing, keeping shirts buttoned and tucked into pants, and wearing proper footwear. Additionally, some products may remain available for purchase to act as repellents, for both bare skin and clothing.
When infestation becomes a serious issue, home and business owners may want to consult a pest removal specialist.
Do Lone Star Ticks Carry Lyme Disease
DISCLAIMER: The Lyme Disease Association, Inc. provides referrals to health care providers who treat Lyme disease, and often other TBD, as a courtesy to those seeking Lyme Literate Physicians . However, some of the providers included do not specifically treat Lyme and TBD but see patients who have symptoms associated with Lyme and TBD to address those specific symptoms.
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