Tick Removal, Control & Helping the Prevention of Lymes Disease
There have been an increased number of ticks in the UK this summer due to the humid but quite damp conditions. To help, we have produced this small guide to help show you how to combat and control Ticks this summer.
During the months trough April to September, we often see an increase in the number of general insects and parasites, but Ticks are always of concern with their ability to quickly attach themselves to both humans, farm animals and family pets (especially dogs).
Carried by rodents and small animals, their continued spread also increases the threat of Lymes disease to pets and humans. Lymes disease is a bacterial infection spread to by infected Ticks. There are between 2000 to 3000 recorded cases of Lymes disease in England and Wales each year.
How to Remove Ticks
Whilst many people believe these to be old 'wives' tales, many are still true today. If someone tells you that twisting a tick is the best way of removal, this is not the case and don't follow their guidance! A straight, steady pull is the best way to remove any tick.
Whilst there are specialist tools available, a good quality pair of tweezers will be the best possible tool the average household already has. To remove a tick you should:
- Clean / cleanse the tweezers with antiseptic or similar
- Clear an area around the tick for working
- Using the tweezers, grab the tick at the closet possible point to the skin
- Without squeezing the body of the tick, pull the tweezers upright with a steady motion
- This may take some force, but should pull the tick out in a single go
- Check the would for any parts of the tick that may be left in the skin - again remove these with your tweezers
- Clean the skin with an antiseptic type cream
After you have removed your tick, Public Health England actually ask you to send it to them for identity within a sealed container for their database. Alternatively if you want to kill your tick, it is suggested you crush it and then flush it down the toilet. However, please be aware that a tick will contain infected blood, so when crushing ensure you do this in a bag, tape or something similar to hold the blood.
How to Prevent Ticks and Lymes Disease
Now of course, the best form of removing ticks is actually the prevention of them in the first place. Whilst this is difficult to control in public places, you can protect your property, garden and the surrounding area from ticks.
Using Ficam W (a proven, wettable powder insecticide) on and around the garden in places where ticks may be present will kill any ticks and even stop their spread. However, Ficam W is a powerful insecticide and when used, children and pets should not be allowed to come into contact with the area, as Ficam W touching the skin may cause irritation. (buy now).
Hemexsan (diamatacaious earth) is the most eco-friendly and safe way of removing and reducing ticks. Whilst it won't kill ticks, it will remove the environment that they live and strive in. Ticks are mostly found in and around moisture, you can make their environment a less inviting place for the bugs and for ticks by removing damp leaves and applying Hemexsan to dark, damp areas as an absorber.
Hemexsan is none toxic and this will do no harm to children or animals that may come into contact with it. (buy here).
Alternatively use Permost Uni Spray - A permetharin based knockdown insecticide. Once sprayed it will be perfectly safe within an hour or two (depending on the environment, please always read the label) so can be sprayed at night and often safe by morning. Permost Uni even be applied to the exterior of tents and clothing as long as there is no skin contact. (buy here).
Other Tips for Less Ticks
When out walking, especially in wooded areas wear long socks and if wearing trousers, tuck those into you socks. Woodland is a favourite area for ticks due to it's damp nature, indeed it is likely your log stack could be a source of ticks in your garden if it isn't dry.
Always, on returning home, wash all clothes, fabrics and washable items and shower.
There we have it, our tips for removing ticks and the prevention of them spreading. If you are unsure, please always contact your doctor of vet. Some our our available products are below.