New Jersey and many other areas in the North are known as a hot bed for Lyme disease carrying deer ticks, especially in the summer. Found on deer, mice, squirrels, and other small rodents native to the New England area, deer ticks feed off the blood of their hosts with a typically harmless bite. Some ticks, however, act as a vector for the often debilitating bacterial infection called Lyme disease.
What is Lyme Disease?
Lyme disease is a bacterial illness that can critically affect the skin, joints, heart, and nervous system. Diagnosed by the patient’s symptoms and a detection of antibodies in a blood test, Lyme disease requires immediate medical care to reduce or prevent severity of illness. Look out for the following symptoms:
- Red, target shaped rash
- Joint aches and pains
- Low-grade fevers or chills
What to Do if You Get Bit By a Deer Tick?
Your first task is to determine if you were bitten by a deer tick. Deer ticks are significantly smaller than all other ticks. If you or someone you know thinks they were bitten by a deer tick, we highly recommend you visit AFC Urgent Care within the first 48 hrs. of detection for proper removal (if needed), diagnosis, and treatment by a medical professional. If you feel strongly about removing the tick yourself, follow these tips:
- Using tweezers grasp tick as close to skin as possible
- Gently remove tick in steady, upward motion until entire tick is removed
- Clean the wound with clean water and antibacterial soap
- Monitor the site where the tick was removed for signs of infection
- Record the date of detection and the exact time any symptoms appear
The longer the tick remains embedded the higher the chances of contracting Lyme disease. Don’t delay; visit AFC Urgent Care for immediate care for tick bites. Visit our conveniently located center at 560 New York Ave in Lyndhurst, NJ or give us a call at 201.494.2516.