Tick bite: When should I worry?

25 April 2017
Comments: 0
25 April 2017, Comments: 0

A tick bite can occur in any part on the body. Ticks are often attracted to the moist areas such as the underarms or groin. Even though most tick bites are relatively harmless, they can transmit certain ailments when they bite.

What are the indications of a tick bite?

A tick bite will not always trigger any symptoms. If a bite triggers symptoms, the following might develop:

  • Redness

    Tick bite

    After being bit by a tick, a doctor must be seen if flu-like symptoms arise such as tiredness, fever and muscle aches since it might be an indication of a tick-borne illness.

  • Elevated bump at the bite site
  • Itchiness
  • Burning sensation in the site of the tick bite

One way to differentiate between a tick bite and other insect bites is that the tick often remains attached to the skin for several days. One will know that he/she has been bitten since they find the tick still attached.

Tick-borne diseases

  • Lyme disease – an individual develops this condition if a tick bite transmits the bacteria Borrelia burgdorferi.
  • Rocky Mountain spotted fever – this condition can be transmitted by the American dog tick
  • Tularemia – this is a rare ailment caused by the bacterium Francisella tularensis
  • Colorado tick fever – this ailment is caused by the Rocky Mountain wood tick

When to consult a doctor

A tick bite might be harmless but it is vital to know when to consult a doctor. If a tick could not be fully removed, it is best to seek medical care. The longer the tick is attached, the higher the chances of acquiring a tick-borne disease.

After being bit by a tick, a doctor must be seen if flu-like symptoms arise such as tiredness, fever and muscle aches since it might be an indication of a tick-borne illness. The early the treatment is started, the better the outcome.

Tick removal

Once a tick is seen on the skin, it should be removed right away. The tick can be removed using a fine-tipped tweezer.

The tick must be held as close to the skin surface as possible. While placing evenly distributed pressure, pull upward out from the skin. Once the tick is removed, make sure that the mouth part of the tick is not left adhered to the skin. In case it is still attached, make sure that it is removed. Wash the skin using water and soap after.

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