Sunny weather, fresh air and lush green meadows and forests … simply wonderful! If only the tiny bloodsuckers weren’t lurking there somewhere: the ticks. Unfortunately, the small arachnids are already out and about in spring on tall grass, bushes and leaves and are eagerly looking for food. This primarily refers to warm-blooded animals, such as farm animals and wild animals, but also us humans. We’ll tell you below why a tick bite can be dangerous, how you can prevent it and what you should do in an emergency.
Ticks – the spider-like, blood-sucking insects in the grass
Why can a tick bite be dangerous?
A tick bite is not a big problem, because you hardly feel anything. Unfortunately, ticks can transmit dangerous bacteria or viruses to humans and animals when they suckle blood. The risk of infection varies depending on the type of tick and the length of the tick. In the past, ticks were very rare in our latitudes.
With climate change, however, the situation has changed. Seven species of ticks are already considered to be native to Germany. For example, some arrived with migratory birds and survived during the milder winter seasons. Because ticks multiply fairly quickly, the insects have long since established themselves in this country. One such case is the immigrant Hyalomma tick. It usually lives in the arid and semi-arid regions of Africa, Asia and southern Europe and is much larger compared to the native common wood tick. Unfortunately, it is also much more dangerous.
Ticks differ in type and origin
However, that does not mean that one should underestimate the common ram. Because this can also transmit some infectious diseases such as borreliosis (Lyme borreliosis) and TBE (early summer meningoencephalitis). In the first case, it is a bacterial infection by Borrelia, which also has an incubation period of several weeks and is rather difficult to diagnose and treat. The second case involves a virus that causes acute inflammation of the meninges and often can infect the brain and spinal cord. It is not for nothing that it is also called “tick encephalitis”.
Common wooden trestle
It can be even more serious in the event of a tick bite from the Hyalomma tick. This can namely transmit tropical typhus as well as the Crimean-Congo fever virus. The incubation period in these cases is much shorter – about a week and the sting is much more noticeable. Typical symptoms of the first illness are rashes and fever as well as severe muscle and joint pain. With the second clinical picture, dangerous, massive bleeding throughout the body is to be expected.
“Wandering redness” is the name given to the noticeable reddening that could develop in the event of an infection
How can you protect yourself from a tick bite??
Always use a good anti-tick spray before going out into the great outdoors in summer or when weeding tall grass. Such a repellent offers quite effective protection against the blood-sucking animals. Some essential oils can also be used as natural alternatives. Try to stay on safe paths when walking in the woods or put on rubber boots if you are looking for mushrooms or if you really want to walk through the bushes. Wear closed shoes and long trousers and, if possible, long sleeves. It would be best if your clothes are one color and light. So you can notice the ticks on it in good time. Be sure to check your body skin and that of your children for ticks after every visit to nature. In southern countries, ticks could even be found on beaches and in dry areas.
Spray directly on the skin or on shoes and clothing if you can
Remove tick – this is how it works!
If, despite all protective measures, a tick bite does occur, you should remove the treacherous bloodsucker as soon as possible. Because the risk of infection increases if the tick is stuck in the skin for more than 24 hours. It is recommended to have this done by a doctor, but if it is not possible at the moment, you can do it yourself. The best way to remove a tick is to use a tick tweezer, card or a good pair of tweezers. Use it to carefully but firmly grasp the tick as close to the surface of the skin as possible and pull it straight up without twisting it.
It would be ideal if a doctor removed the tick properly
How To Remove A Tick Properly
Do not squeeze the tick body under any circumstances. This will prevent additional liquid from flowing out of it. After the tick is fully pulled out, examine the area for possible insect debris. You should definitely destroy the tick, because it can still survive after it has moved out and choose another victim. Afterwards, thoroughly disinfect the tick bite. Take a while to see what the area looks like and take your body temperature regularly. If you have increased redness, fever, body aches or other noticeable symptoms, consult a doctor to be on the safe side.
Important tip! Do not soak the tick with oil, gasoline, alcohol, nail polish remover, etc. The arachnid is stressed or anesthetized in this way and can allow fluid from its stomach or saliva to flow back into your blood. This increases the risk of infection.
Stay healthy and tick-free!
Follow our tips, especially now in summer, and protect your loved ones and yourself from a tick bite. If this does happen, do not panic and act carefully and consciously!
Tiny but very treacherous and always hungry
Act as early as possible!
Be even more attentive to children and pets in particular!