We are in the heart of the summer here in the Charlotte area, and we are loving it! The warm weather, sunnier days and time spent with friends and family are priceless. However, that means tick season is still in high gear and we all must remain vigilant.
The majority of tick bites aren’t dangerous, but there is always a chance that the tick that bites you is carrying Lyme disease. If you find a tick on yourself, the best thing to do is remove it as quickly as possible.
Our AFC Urgent Care Ballantyne team explains how to remove a tick and what symptoms to watch for that indicate Lyme disease, so read on to learn more.
Are All Tick Bites Serious?
Thankfully, no. Most tick bites are just annoying, and if we are honest, sort of gross. If you remove the tick entirely, the redness and irritation will disappear within a day or so and you will be good as new. A small population of ticks, though, do carry certain diseases, like Lyme disease.
The good news is that even if the tick that bit you was carrying the disease, it needs to be attached to you for at least 36 hours before it can transmit it to you. This is why time is of the essence! If you don’t know exactly when it bit you, you want to get rid of it as quickly as you can.
Steps for Removing a Tick
- Use a clean tweezers and pull slowly and steadily away from the skin.
- Do not twist as you pull.
- Take a picture of the tick.
- Dispose in the garbage or toilet.
- Wash your hands and the bite site thoroughly.
What Do I Look for After a Tick Bite?
Once the tick has been removed from your skin, simply keep an eye on how you are feeling over the next month. Lyme disease symptoms could start to appear after three days, or it could take up to 30 days. A rash that looks like a bulls-eye can appear around the bite site, you might develop a fever or body chills, or you might experience joint stiffness or pain.
The longer you wait to be seen for your symptoms, the worse they can get and can actually lead to chronic issues and long-term fatigue. If you are ever concerned about an insect bite or a rash on your skin, we are here to help!
When a Doctor’s Visit Is Recommended
- You can’t remove the entire tick on your own
- Your rash gets bigger or looks like a bulls-eye
- Flu-like symptoms appear
- Signs of infection appear, like pus or redness and swelling
If you are ever worried about an animal or insect bite, come see us at AFC Urgent Care Ballantyne.