Keeping your family safe from ticks

As temperatures rise, so does the tick population in Massachusetts.

SPRINGFIELD, Mass (WWLP) – Ticks can carry diseases that could harm you, your family and your pets.

Ticks can be become a big problem for outdoor enthusiasts. They’re in the grass, the bushes and the woods. They’re blood suckers, and can latch onto your clothes and your skin for days, and you wouldn’t even know it.

Dr. Ira Helfand of Family Care Medical Center in Springfield, told 22News, “Most importantly Lyme disease, which did not use to be a problem in this area, but now are. The ticks in the area didn’t use to carry the Lyme bacteria and now they do. It’s kind of the range of that bacteria has spread.”

Lyme disease is transmitted by being bitten by an infected tick. You may see a large bulls eye rash. Other symptoms include, fever, headache and migraines. Left untreated, Lyme disease could lead to serious health issues.

Experts recommend you walk along a clear path, and avoid high grass areas, unless the lower part of your body is fully covered.

Rose Romito of East Longmeadow told 22News, she removed a tick that had burrowed into her skin. “I got close to the head, where the pinxlers are wiggled it out. Straight up. That’s how I did it.”

Experts recommend you use a tick-removal tool to ensure you don’t leave the head embedded in your skin. Ticks love dogs and cats. Experts recommend topical tick treatments, or vaccinating your pet against Lyme disease

Click here for more information on tick prevention and safety.

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