Thanks to mild winter temperatures, dangerous ticks carrying Lyme disease are expected in high population numbers this spring and summer. Why are ticks at such a high level? How can you protect your family from these pests?
Why Are Ticks Such a Threat?
Deer ticks are very common throughout the Maryland area. While they are only the size of a tiny sesame seed, they can cause irreparable harm to your family. Ticks are the most common carrier of Lyme disease, a serious infection that causes headaches, rashes, fatigue, and fever. Over time, if untreated, Lyme disease will spread to the heart, the organs, and the entire nervous system.
High Levels of Ticks
Tick numbers are increasing during the summer months thanks to a variety of factors, including warmer winters. Over the period from 1992 to 2006, the annual incidence of Lyme disease rose a whopping 101%. As the average winter temperatures have continued to rise, the numbers of ticks and tick-transmitted illnesses have continued to rise as well. For ticks to continue their life cycle, they must exist in an environment with over 85% humidity and temperatures of at least 44.6 degrees F. When ticks get a head start on breeding season, they multiply to higher and higher numbers each year.
How Can You Protect Your Family from Lyme Disease and Ticks?
The best way to protect against Lyme disease is prevention. Almost 25% of Lyme disease cases affect children, since they frequently play on the ground and in the woods. Pet owners are also at a disproportionate risk, since their dogs roll around in grass and dirt and bring it inside with them. To prevent ticks from harming your family:
- Purchase clothing and shoes containing permethrin, a chemical that kills ticks, if you spend a lot of time in the woods.
- Use a bug repellent containing DEET on your skin, following manufacturer instructions, before spending time in the woods.
- Check your clothing for ticks after coming indoors.
- Take a shower within 2 hours of coming inside.
- Check your body for ticks after coming inside, paying special attention to the areas in and around your hairline, underarms, ears and ankles.
- Keep other pests out of your yard and home as well with a consultation from Brody Brothers Quality Pest Control.
Schedule a comprehensive property inspection today with Brody Brothers Quality Pest Control by calling 410-653-2121.