How (and Why) to Stay Safe from Ticks this Summer

If you ask the team at Cancer Sherpa what our golden rules for summer are, you’d get the same answers across the board: bug spray and SPF. Basically part of our company values, our founder Clare Matschullat reminds us (frequently!) of the perils of sun damage and bug bites – citing her own health experiences as proof. We won’t call it a scare tactic, but let’s just say you want to be extra careful in tick-ridden environments.

Here’s the deal. Ticks carry bacteria that can cause Lyme Disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever and a whole host of other tick-borne diseases. Lately, we’ve been hearing about some new diseases popping up, and those aforementioned ones are on the rise (CDC). Illness-causing ticks can be found in all 50 states, making awareness important for everyone in the U.S.

Tick 101

  • Ticks range in size from as small as a poppy seed (a freckle) to as large as a sesame seed (a mole)
  • Expect to find ticks in grassy, brushy, and wooded areas, as well as on the animals that frequent them (this includes your pets)
  • You should be extra cautious when engaging in activities like camping, hiking, and even gardening
  • If you find a tick on yourself or your pet, follow the CDC’s guide for removing it

How to protect yourself

  • Use insect repellent. You can use the EPA’s insect repellant search tool to find the right option for you and your family. Be sure to follow the product instructions carefully
  • Treat clothing (including camping and hiking gear, even your boots) with 0.5% permethrin, which should remain protective through several wash cycles
  • Make sure your pets are protected with tick prevention products (if applicable). Check them daily, especially after they’ve spent time outside (CDC). If you find a tick, remove it immediately

A few simple steps go a long way when it comes to staying safe from tick-borne diseases, so make bug spray and tick checks part of your family’s summer checklist

Questions? We’re here to help – contact our team today.