Take Steps to Prevent Tick Borne Infections


Contributed by Kristen Lind

From the Tompkins County Health Department




(ITHACA, NY – May 21, 2019) – Spring is here and so are the ticks! It’s time to get outside and enjoy the season. It’s also time to take steps to prevent tick-borne infection. 


New tick-borne infections have been discovered in recent years and are steadily increasing, Lyme disease being the most commonly reported. Most tick-borne infections, including Lyme disease, can be successfully treated with antibiotics especially if medication is started early. Preventing tick bites is your best defense against tick-borne infection


Ticks may be different sizes depending on their stage of life. Nymphs are very active in spring and are about the size of a poppy seed, making them hard to spot. Ticks live in shaded, moist areas at ground level. They cling to tall grass, brush, and shrubs, at the edge of woods, along trails, in leaf piles and around old stone walls, waiting for a passerby to come along so they can climb aboard. 


Here are important steps to keep in mind:

Often people are not aware of a tick bite until symptoms appear. These may include severe fatigue, flu-like symptoms, headache, fever, joint swelling, facial paralysis or rash. Some people may experience a sudden red lesion, “bull’s-eye rash,” on their body. If you experience these symptoms, contact your health provider as soon as possible.

Check out these videos about proper tick removal and safety: https://www.health.ny.gov/diseases/communicable/lyme/

To learn more about Tick-borne infection, call the Tompkins County Health Department at 274-6604 or visit the Department’s website: http://tompkinscountyny.gov/health/summer/ticks


**For the IC community, there are FREE Tick Removal Kits available in the Counseling, Health & Wellness Outreach Center in the front entrance of the Hammond Health Center.**


Individuals with disabilities requiring accommodations should contact Kristen Lind at klind@ithaca.edu or (607) 274-3136. We ask that requests for accommodations be made as soon as possible.