Ticks are found in long grassy trails, especially one that is grazed by deer. Some species of ticks carry the pathogen for Lyme disease and cause immense trouble to human beings and pets. It is best to try not to get bitten by these parasites as far as possible, especially if you are camping, hiking or simply taking a walk in the woods. Following safety measures can help you avoid ticks while camping. We hope these will prevent tick bites and subsequent Lyme disease.
Symptoms of Lyme disease
Lyme disease starts with rash, fever, body ache, fatigue and chills. Later on, it causes joint pain and cerebral meningitis, numbness and several other neurological conditions that are painful and degrade quality of life.
Ensure ticks don’t bite you-avoid ticks while camping with these tips
- Wear loose fitting clothes. It is easy to get rid of a tick when your clothes are not clinging to your body.
- Wear plain clothes, preferably light colors. In case ticks reach your body, it will be easier to spot them as they won’t get lost in the design of your clothing.
- Wear comfortable shoes and socks and if possible, tuck your trousers/pants into the socks/shoes. Even though ticks get on your clothes, they won’t be able to reach your skin.
- Wear full sleeve shirts with collars. Button up completely so ticks do not enter through the neck.
- Periodically check yourself for ticks and gently remove any ticks that may have reached your clothes.
- Select a spot that has less grass or is less woody for camping. If possible carry camping chairs or picnic blankets, and use them instead of just sitting down on the grass or a fallen tree.
- When you pack up, examine the blanket and other items you have used for ticks that have made their way on them. The next worst thing to getting bitten by a tick is carrying it home.
- Carry tweezers when you go camping or hiking. If you do find a tick clinging to your clothes or attached to your skin, calmly and gently remove it with a tweezers. Ensure you remove each and every part of the tick so that no infected part is left on your skin, ready to mix with your blood.
- Ticks are tiny insects. So make your examination thorough.
- Know different types of ticks. There are several species of these parasites. If you are a frequent camper, try to spend some time and look at pictures of different species of ticks.
- Examine your pets as thoroughly as you examine yourself and your kids for ticks after a camping trip or a hike.
- Use a tick repellent spray or lotion. Apply all over the body carefully making sure it doesn’t go into your eyes or mouth. Do not use excess lotion on your body. Check the label if the tick repellent maybe sprayed all over your body or just the clothes.
- If you believe you brought home ticks, disinfect you clothes, camping material and your pets thoroughly using tick repellents and warm water.
- If you are a frequent camper, invest in some tick repellent clothing. It is easy to use and maintain and makes your camping trips stress free.
After getting bitten by a tick
- Remove the tick using your tweezers. Make sure you remove the whole tick. Ticks are tiny insects and they break off when you try to separate them from your skin after they have dug their mouthparts into your skin. Ensure you remove the entire tick, body, legs, and piercing mouth parts.
- Wash the bitten area with antiseptic soap and apply an antiseptic cream to stop the tick venom from spreading.
- Try not to disintegrate the tick while removing it nor squeeze or spread its body fluids.
- Keep an eye on your body temperature. If you feel feverish, consult a doctor.
Even if you have bought tick repellent clothes, examine yourself, your companions and your pets for ticks every 3 hours to stay safe. If you suspect being bitten by a tick, apply antiseptic cream over the bitten area and consult a doctor. We hope these tips help you avoid ticks when camping.