The summer is coming.  While we may still be fighting the cold, sometimes it is nice to dream about nicer weather.  But not everything that comes with warmer weather is so nice.  Ticks are a constant threat to people and their pets.  It’s important to remain vigilant against these disease breeding pests.  But if you are bitten, will ticks fall off?  A tick will remove itself from its host when it has fully fed.  This can take three to four days to complete.  

Ticks are blood feeders.  In order to complete their lifecycle, they must consume blood to survive and lay eggs.  They do this by finding a suitable host, and then burying their mouth parts into a vulnerable spot like an armpit, or the back of a leg.  This gives them access to our blood stream without clear visual clues that something is wrong.  They will continue to feed on our blood until they have completely engorged themselves, becoming much larger than normal. At this point, they will fall off and lay eggs.  


For health and safety reasons, it is important to remove a tick as soon as it is found.  Ticks will usually find the most inconvenient place to bite, since this will conceal their activity.  When you come in from a walk in the woods or through a field, it is important that you check yourself.  You may need the help of a loved one to look at the places that are hard for you to see.  Once you find a tick, there are two methods to removing the tick.  

You can either use a tick card, or a pair of tweezers.  If you don’t have either of these, using your fingernails can suffice.  The important part is that you grasp the tick as close to the bite as you can.  Gently pull the tick from the skin.  If it will not come loose, a slight twisting motion in either direction may help.  Once you have removed the tick, don’t crush the tick, apply it to a piece of tape and save it.  If your bite turns worse, doctors may need to see the tick for an inspection.  The mouth parts of the tick may break off in the skin, if so, try to remove them with tweezers and then clean with rubbing alcohol.  If you can’t get all of it out, don’t worry.  You may have some irritation, but it should go away on its own.  


Removing a tick from your pet is much the same as removing one from your own.  The biggest difference is in the fact that your pet has fur.  As you inspect their coat, feel for small bumps.  A tick can be as small as the head if a pin, or the size of a grape.  Be sure to inspect areas that you wouldn’t expect, such as under their ears and between their toes.  Its good to use a combing motion with your fingers as you inspect them.  Contact your Tulsa exterminator for more help.  

Once you find a tick, you will want to remove it much the same way that you would remove one from yourself.  There are tick removal kits available from pet stores, but if you don’t have one, you can use a pair of tweezers.  Pull gently, and twist if needed.  Save the tick, just in case your dog starts showing signs of being ill.  Apply rubbing alcohol and antiseptic to the wound and allow it time to heal.  


Often, someone will find a tick on themselves or their pet and want to know how long the tick has been biting.  This is important, if it can be determined.  The reason that it is important is that the longer the tick feeds, the more the chance is there that it transmits a disease to you or your pet.  The trick is that it can be somewhat difficult to determine exactly how long the tick has been feeding.  You can get more information from your Broken Arrow exterminator.  

Ticks often start off having a wrinkled, or raisin like appearance.  This is because they have extra skin in order to enlarge as they fill with blood.  Looking at how large, or how engorged the insect is can give a clue as to how long they have been feeding.  If they still appear to be in a deflated state, they are likely in their first 24 hours of feeding.  During this period, little or no change occurs in their size.  In the second or third day, they will begin to grow, and be in some middle stage of engorging.  By the fourth day, they will be fully inflated, about the size of a grape.  


Removing the tick as soon as possible is the most important task once you are bitten.  During the biting process, the tick can force fluid back into the blood stream.  This is where disease transmission occurs.  The shorter the time that they are biting, the lower the chance that a disease has been transmitted.  Not every tick is infected, but any tick can be infected.  Even if a tick is infected, it may not have transmitted the disease yet.  This is why timing is so important.  Your Tulsa pest control company can help.  

Lyme disease is the most common, and one of the most dangerous, diseases that ticks can transmit.  Often, a red ring will form around the wound, much like a bullseye.  It doesn’t have to be perfect bullseye, but if a redness begins to develop around the wound, its important to have a medical doctor look at it.  Rocky Mountain Fever is another dangerous disease that can be spread by the bite of a tick.  If you have any concerns about a possible tick spread disease, contact your medical professional immediately.  


Ticks are dangerous and not a pest to be taken lightly.  But you don’t have to live with pests in your yard.  Your Broken Arrow pest control company has services that can keep your yard tick and pest free all summer long.  Contact TermMax Pest Control today for a free estimate.  We service the greater Tulsa area, including Bixby, Jenks, Sapulpa, Coweta, Pratville, Claremore, Catoosa, Sand Springs, Turley, Owasso and much more.  We’re here to help!

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