Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Tick Tips inspired by a 2nd Grader

I received a beautifully handwritten letter from a second grade student. She noticed there have been a lot of ticks appearing this year and wanted to raise awareness of ways to address the problem. Most people think of ticks in the woods, but it is equally likely they will appear in grass. "Ticks like to live in areas where there is tall grass because of the shade and moisture."  Mice, squirrels, chipmunks and other rodents can easily spread ticks beyond tree lines. Just after reading her letter, I went outside during recess and noticed a group of children gathered outside the designated play area. Apparently, a frog had captured their attention and led them toward a spot of long grass. We do not want to limit children from enjoying these special moments in nature. However, it is important to take precautions and make tick checks a regular routine.

Because the risk of catching lyme and other diseases increases dramatically after 24 hours, removing ticks quickly is essential. Make tick checks part of your nightly routine... when bathing or brushing teeth, also check for ticks. If you suspect a tick has been attached for an extended time, or a round red mark becomes visible, consult a medical provider. The video below was found on the Lyme Disease Association website, it was produced by the University of Manitoba.
I have inquired about spraying the grounds for ticks, but due to strict mandates regarding chemical use near public schools, it was not recommended. However, I would like to share a simple DIY home remedy I just became aware of..."Tic Tubes." It may be worth doing your own research to find out if buying, or making them, would be good for your own personal use -just be sure to keep them safely away from young children and pets. The links below are good resources for additional information about ticks:

    Lyme Disease Association: https://lymediseaseassociation.org/