It's Springtime in the Pioneer Valley, which means it's high tick season! If you find a tick attached to your skin, there's no need to panic!
How to remove a tick
There are several tick removal devices on the market, but a plain set of fine-tipped tweezers will remove a tick quite effectively.
Use fine-tipped tweezers to grasp the tick as close to the skin's surface as possible.
Pull upward with steady, even pressure. Don't twist or jerk the tick; this can cause the mouth-parts to break off and remain in the skin. If this happens, remove the mouth-parts with tweezers. If you are unable to remove everything easily with clean tweezers, leave it alone and let the skin heal.
After removing the tick, thoroughly clean the bite area and your hands with rubbing alcohol, an iodine scrub, or soap and water.
Dispose of a live tick by submersing it in alcohol, placing it in a sealed bag/container, wrapping it tightly in tape, or flushing it down the toilet. Never crush a tick with your fingers.
The likelihood of developing an illness from a tick bite is low, particualrly if the tick has not been attached for more than 36 hours and is not engorged. While you do not need to see us for every tick bite, some situations do warrant evaluation and possiby treament. Please visit our website for more information. And please call if you develop a rash or fever within several weeks of removing a tick. If you do call us about a recent tick bite, make sure to tell us when the bite occurred, what kind of tick it was, how long it was attached, and where you most likely acquired the tick.