The Deer tick, Lone star tick, American Dog Tick and Brown Dog Tick are all found in the northeast USA. All 4 species are medically important and known to cause human disease.
Avoiding being a victim. While it is a good idea to take preventive measures against ticks year-round, be extra vigilant in warmer months (April-September) when ticks are most active. Here are some tips to help you avoid ticks.
- Avoid wooded and brushy areas with high grass and leaf litter.
- Walk in the center of trails.
- Use repellents that contain 20 to 30% DEET (N, N-diethyl-m-toluamide) on exposed skin and clothing for protection that lasts up to several hours. Always follow product instructions. Parents should apply this product to their children, avoiding hands, eyes, and mouth.
- Use products that contain permethrin on clothing. Treat clothing and gear, such as boots, pants, socks and tents with products containing 0.5% permethrin. It remains protective through several washings. Pre-treated clothing is available and may be protective longer.
- Bathe or shower as soon as possible after coming indoors (preferably within two hours) to wash off and more easily find ticks that are crawling on you.
- Conduct a full-body tick check using a hand-held or full-length mirror to view all parts of your body upon return from tick-infested areas. Parents should check their children for ticks under the arms, in and around the ears, inside the belly button, behind the knees, between the legs, around the waist, and especially in their hair.
- Examine gear and pets. Ticks can ride into the home on clothing and pets, then attach to a person later, so carefully examine pets, coats, and day packs.
- Tumble dry clothes in a dryer on high heat for 10 minutes to kill ticks on dry clothing after you come indoors.
- If the clothes are damp, additional time may be needed.
- If the clothes require washing first, hot water is recommended. Cold and medium temperature water will not kill ticks effectively. If the clothes cannot be washed in hot water, tumble dry on low heat for 90 minutes or high heat for 60 minutes. The clothes should be warm and completely dry.
Ticks will aggressively feed on dogs and cats. It is equally important to check your pets for ticks. If you find a tick on your dog or cat consult your veterinarian for instructions on how to safely remove and discard it.
Mike Deutsch MS, BCE
Arrow Exterminating Company, Inc.
Dealing with ticks? Arrow Exterminating Company provides high-quality exterior tick treatment services in Long Island and surrounding areas. Call today to request your consultation!