The warmer months bring a lot of joy, from picnics and barbecues to swimming pools and beach vacations. While the warmer months bring joy with activities like swimming, homeowners should also be wary of potential swimming pool water bugs along with ticks. However, it also brings increased risks of tick infestations, and with ticks, the threat of Lyme disease. As homeowners, understanding these risks is crucial to preventing potential infections and maintaining a healthy environment around your home.
Identifying Common Types of Ticks
Ticks come in various types, each posing unique threats. There are more than 20 species of ticks in B.C., but only three species normally bite humans. Among the commonly found ticks in the B.C. include the winter tick, the Rocky Mountain wood tick and the Western black-legged tick . When a tick attaches to a host’s skin, it can transmit bacteria and viruses leading to infection. While ticks can be a menace, there are other insects like the Asian Giant Hornet that homeowners in B.C. should be informed about.
Understanding and Recognizing Symptoms Lyme Disease
Lyme disease is a vector-borne disease, transmitted through ticks of the Ixodes genus. The disease is caused by Borrelia bacteria, which spreads from tick bites. The signs of Lyme disease can range from subtle to severe. In early-stage Lyme Disease, individuals often notice a distinctive circular rash at the tick bite site roughly three to 30 days after the bite. This rash, known as erythema migrans, often has a bull’s-eye appearance. Other common symptoms include fever, chills, fatigue, and headache. Late-stage Lyme disease symptoms may include numbness in hands and legs, arthritis, and short-term memory loss. If you or a family member experiences any persistent symptoms, it’s vital to contact a healthcare provider.
Preventing Tick Infestations
To keep your yard free from ticks, consider the following measures: removing leaf litter, tall grasses, and brush around your home, placing a barrier of wood chips between your lawn and wooded areas, frequently mowing your lawn, pruning shrubs and avoiding shady areas. Using fences and natural deterrents can help keep animals prone to carrying ticks away from your yard. While safeguarding your yard against ticks, you might also be interested in tips on how to keep your backyard party bug-free for a comfortable outdoor experience.
Safely Removing Ticks from People and Pets
If you find a tick on you or your pet, remove it safely using this process:
- Get clean, fine-tipped tweezers to grasp the tick as close as possible to the skin’s surface.
- Pull upward with steady, even pressure.
- Once removed, clean the bite area and your hands with rubbing alcohol or soap and water.
- Avoid crushing the tick with bare fingers.
Handling Ticks Inside Your Home
If you find ticks inside your home, remove and dispose of them safely. If they continue to be an issue, it’s recommended you contact a pest control professional. Apart from ticks, there are other pests that might infiltrate your home. Learn about silverfish infestation in your home and how to tackle it effectively.
While the summer season offers a lot of fun activities for homeowners, it’s important to stay vigilant and safeguard your home against ticks and Lyme disease. By being informed and taking preventive measures, you can reduce the risk of tick infestation in your home and yard, ultimately protecting yourself and loved ones from Lyme disease. Staying informed and vigilant against ticks and Lyme disease is essential. It’s also a good time to make pest-checking your home a priority for the upcoming year.
For residents in the greater Vancouver region, the threat of ticks and Lyme disease is real. Don’t leave your home’s safety to chance. Whether you’re in West Vancouver, North Vancouver, Vancouver, Burnaby & New West, the Coquitlam & Tri-Cities area, or Richmond, we have local solutions tailored for you. Click on your city to find out how our dedicated pest control experts can help protect your home and loved ones.