How can I keep ticks from ruining my summer? - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

How can I keep ticks from ruining my summer?

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NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) -

Before you hit the trails or go camping this summer, doctors have an important warning for you about ticks.

When Walter Harrison is out for his morning walk at Edwin Warner Park, he's always keeping an eye out for a few bugs that may want to hitch a free ride.

His first rule of thumb is stay on the trail.

"If you go off the trails, they are all over the places," said Harrison.

Experts have a few tips to keep ticks off you.

  • Use insect repellent containing DEET.
  • Wear long sleeves, long pants and a hat.
  • Wear light-colored shorts and shirts, which make it easier to spot a tick.

Check your family members in places they can't always see to make sure they didn't bring home a tick.

It only takes one bite and you could be dealing with a serious illness like Lyme disease or Rocky Mountain spotted fever.

Dr. William Schaffner, an infectious disease specialist at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, says ticks can latch onto you for hours before they are discovered.  If you get a tick, there are some misconceptions about how to best remove it.

"Take a tissue. Grab the tick firmly as close to the skin as possible and then slowly withdraw. Don't jerk or you'll leave the head. The tick will come out," said Schaffner.

Some of the symptoms of a tick-borne illness include fever, weak muscles and headaches.

Learn more about symptoms of tick-borne illness:

http://www.cdc.gov/ticks/symptoms.html

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