Safety tips for Hamilton County tick season

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) – Tick-borne illnesses aren’t too common in Hamilton County.

In 2015 there were 16 tick contracted illnesses reported and in 2016 there were 17 illnesses reported.

They can lurk in the brush, on grass, and under leaves.

Charles Lancaster with the Catoosa County Extension Office said that in our area there are several different kinds of ticks. These ticks range from dog ticks to lone star ticks. A simple tap of a branch could result with one or several ticks on you.

“The tick disease that we see the most of here, and it’s not a whole lot that we see, but the most common one is the rocky mountain spotted fever, and it’s the one that makes you have fever and rash like most tick diseases do, various symptoms. Some people will have those symptom. Some people won’t.” said Lancaster.

The illnesses can be very dangerous.

The Director of Environmental Health Services Bonnie Deakins reminds residents to protect themselves, their families, and their pets. She says to wear long sleeves and socks. She also says to spray on a repellent that’s 20% DEET or use picaridin.

“On your clothing you can use a different type of insecticide, permethrin. You don’t want to put permethrin on your skin, but you can put it on your clothing and your gear, like backpacks and camping equipment. That type of thing,” said Deakins

Deakins also says to make sure you check for ticks on your children and when you return home, you should always shower within two hours.

As for reports of ticks around this time of year, Lancaster says they get them. Although, reports of illnesses aren’t quite as common, but they do occur.

Categories: Health, Local News

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