Protect Yourself From Ticks

Posted by Nate Wek on

As the weather continues to get warmer and as the trees start to blossom, more and more people will be spending time outdoors.  However, South Dakotans need to protect themselves from ticks.

The state of South Dakota is home to 17 different tick species, with the American Dog Tick being the most common. It’s also the species of tick that is mostly likely to carry Rocky Mountain spotted fever. Ticks can carry other diseases as well, such as lyme disease.

According to the United States Department of Agriculture Forest Service, people are urged to wear lighter color clothing when spending time in tick-infested areas. Lighter colors will make it easier to locate ticks that get on your clothes. It’s also beneficial to wear a “wide-brimmed hat, long-sleeved shirt, and pants.” One tip even includes putting a rubber bands around each sock. Using insect repellent that contains DEET can also help protect against these pests.

If a tick happens to get on you, remove it as quickly and as carefully as possible. The USDA Forest Service would also like to remind citizens that folk methods such as a “lighted match” only increases the chance of infection.

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Lyme disease is caused by a bacterium carried by deer ticks. The disease is common in ticks in some areas and non-existent in others.

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