School is back in session and that means our kids are out running around on playgrounds and getting back into the swing of things. With our kids out of the house that means what we use to protect them is even more important. Notebook, pencils, homework — and bug spray.
“We do have a number of cases that are reported each year,” said Tamara Chavez-Lindell, an epidemiologist at the East Tennessee Regional Health Office.
“There are ticks here across the Southeast that carry Lyme bacteria,” she said. “And it’s simply one of the hazards.”
This is much more common than Lyme in Tennessee, and can be fatal in rare cases. 500-600 cases are reported statewide annually.
“Anyone who spends time outside is at increased risk of coming across a tick,” said Chavez-Lindell. “But the best thing you can do again is just utilize prevention measures.”
Chavez-Lindell recommends several practices to avoid tick-borne disease:
1. Use a bug spray with 20-30% DEET on exposed skin, and consider spraying clothing with permethrin.
2. Avoid tall grass, brush and overhanging limbs. When hiking, stick to the center of the trail.
3. Tuck pants into boots or socks
4. Perform a tick check every night and remove any embedded critters as soon as possible with a tweezers. The less time a tick is attached, the lower the infection risk.
Don’t forget to ask any other questions to your Preferred Pest Termite and Turf Technician or give us a call at 865-297-3789. We’re happy to help protect your family during this busy season.