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What you have to do to protect yourself from tick bites and illnesses

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According to MDHHS, reports of tick-borne diseases such as Lyme disease and anaplasmosis are increasing throughout Michigan.

Therefore, we are calling on residents to take steps to prevent tick bites while they are out this summer.

Dr. Natasha Bagdasarian, MDHHS Chief Medical Executive, said: “If you find ticks on your body, remove them immediately. Monitor your health and consult your health care provider if you experience symptoms such as fever, rash, muscle aches, or joint pain. please.”



Points to note

Health officials in Michigan are asking healthcare providers to consider tick-borne diseases in people with fever and other non-specific symptoms during warmer months.

Signs and symptoms of tick-borne disease usually begin 1-2 weeks after a tick bite, or when you are in a wooded or hairy area where ticks commonly live. Early symptoms are non-specific and include fever, chills, rash, headache, malaise, and myalgia. Early treatment with appropriate antibiotics can reduce the risk of serious complications.

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Lyme disease

Lyme disease It is the most common vector-borne disease in the United States. It is transmitted to humans by being bitten by infected black-footed mites. Symptoms include fever, headache, malaise, and skin rash. If left untreated, it can spread to the joints, heart and nervous system.

Your healthcare provider can diagnose Lyme disease based on your symptoms, physical findings, and potential exposure to infected mites. In most cases, it can be treated with antibiotics for several weeks.

Anaplasmosis

Anaplasmosis is caused by the bacterium Anaplasma fagocytophyllum. It spreads to people mainly by tick bites from black-footed ticks.

People with anaplasmosis often develop fever, headaches, chills, and muscle aches. Doxycycline is the drug of choice for adults and children of all ages with anaplasmosis. According to the CDC..

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The number of cases of anaplasmosis reported in Michigan residents surged from 17 confirmed cases in 2020 to 56 in 2021. The counties with the highest numbers of cases of anaplasmosis include Dickinson and Menominee on the Upper Peninsula, and Manistee and Benji on the Lower Peninsula.

How to avoid being bitten by ticks

Mites don’t just disappear in winter. It becomes active whenever the temperature rises above freezing. Mites inhabit grassy, ​​hairy, or wooded areas, or animals. Many people get bitten by ticks while in their yard or neighborhood, According to the CDC..

The CDC recommends the use of EPA-registered insect repellents containing DEET, picaridin, IR3535, lemon eucalyptus oil (OLE), paramentandiol (PMD), or 2-undecanone. click here Use EPA’s tools to find the best insect repellent for your needs.

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If possible, avoid rugged areas and stay in the middle of the trail while hiking. You can also squeeze your trousers into your socks and use trousers with an elastic waistband. This can be a barrier to ticks.Light-colored clothing also facilitates the detection of mites

After spending your time outdoors, check your clothes for ticks. You can rotate the dry clothes over high heat for 10 minutes to kill mites that may be hidden in the dry clothes. If you need to wash your clothes first, the CDC recommends using hot water to avoid killing mites with cold and medium temperature water.

Taking a shower within two hours of coming indoors can reduce your risk of developing Lyme disease. According to the CDC, showers can help wash away unattached mites.

Where to check for ticks:

  • In and around the ears

  • In and around the hair

  • Under the arm

  • Inside the navel

  • Waist circumference

  • Between the legs

  • Behind the knee

Where to check for pet ticks:

  • In and around the ears

  • Around the tail

  • Around the eyelids

  • Under the collar

  • Under the forefoot

  • Between the hind legs

  • Between toes

What to do if you find a tick

If possible, the mites should be placed in a small, clean and sealable container so that they can be identified.

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Michigan residents and visitors can identify mites for free by mailing them or emailing a photo of them to MDHHS EZID. The state proposes to use small containers, such as medicine bottles, to store and mail mites.

MDHHS EZID contact
Post Michigan Department of Health and Human Services
EZID section
333 S Grand Avenue, 3rd floor
PO Box 30195
Lansing, Michigan 48933
Note: Write FRAGILE or HANDLEW ITHCARE on the outside of the package.
Email Send an email to [email protected]
Note: Place the mites on a bright background. Take a photo as close as possible to the tick and make sure it is not blurry. Please email the two photos with information about where you found the tick to the email address above.

How to safely get rid of mites

You can remove ticks using fine-tipped tweezers or a tick removal key (found in most pet stores and outdoor stores). Keep mites as close to the skin as possible.

If the mouth of the tick is still on the skin and cannot be easily removed, the bite area should be left in place and healed. Wash the bite area and hands with soap and water, and use a disinfectant on the bite area.

Click here for more information How to submit a photo of a tick.

read more: Let’s talk about Michigan mites: you should be familiar with 5, how to avoid being bitten, and what to do if you are bitten

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