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Ticks


QDman
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Everywhere I look, I see information on how to remove ticks. What I haven't seen is how you know they've taken residence.

 

I read that some of them are as small as the head of a pin. Are they easy to spot? What about when they've dug in? What if you're dark complected? What, exactly, should I be looking for?

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Here are some pictures of the different sizes the little bloodsucker has when eating your blood. When you first see it it's like a very small dot on your skin. Sometimes you may feel it like a very small scab when you stroke your skin with your hand. When it's done it's job, it's disgustingly big, and you just can't believe this thing is stuck in your body.

 

Here's a real close up of a freshly stuck tick. At this stage it is like a needle's head or smaller.

 

fastinghonaFast.jpg

 

This is how small it is:

 

tick.jpg

 

And here's a picture of what it looks like when it has fed, many times bigger.

 

fastingen2.jpg

Edited by Lean Wolf
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Well, quite simply, you find them stuck on you. If you don't spot them when they're small, it doesn't take them long to swell up and be easily seen. You need to inspect yourself after you've been out hiking. There are plenty of ticks where you live. I know because I grew up nearby and occasionally would have to pull one off myself or my dog after walking in the canyon.

 

Ticks Commonly Encountered in California

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They are really bad this year in east TN, this is our 3rd summer here and I'd never seen any ticks until now.

So far this year I've seen a bunch, and they're huge, and they're everywhere. Been picking them off our picnic blankets, our pants, and shirts while hiking.

Friday we came out of a trail and checked our clothes (all looked clear), then got in the Jeep and there was a big fat one hanging out on the inside of the windshield, below the rearview mirror.... I thought I was safe in there!! ;)

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Those really are small. Every tick I've found in Idaho has been uch larger. The smallest about the size of the o or 0 on your keyboard and the largest the size of a dime. Those are fairly easy to find.

a Freakin DIME???

 

As far as how to find them? It helps to have someone else look in those hard to see places. ;)

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An ounce of prevention... Seriously, when going into the woods -- use some kind of protection. DEET, permithin, something.

 

If one does slip through, though, I've found each of mine during a good shower after a hike. You can't really feel them bite, and some people say they itch at that spot a little, but I haven't felt anything until I've actually found them. After a long day in the woods, in the shower cover every square inch of your body. Tics love to bury themselves in very hairy areas (I've had most of them attach to my head) but they'll settle for anywhere in a pinch.

Edited by epyx
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As far as how to find them?  It helps to have someone else look in those hard to see places.  ;)

It's important to check those areas; ticks seem to fancy those places. :)

 

And sometimes you can actually feel the little critters when they're meandering about your epidermis.

 

I'm lucky. They don't like me much! :D:D

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Western Washington's few ticks are the large variety. I recently took a fully engorged one off a neighbor's dog. The bug was nearly 3/4" long! As for those "hard to see places..." well, when I get home from a 'ticky' area, I use two mirrors (a big 'un and a little 'un) and do a serious Visual Surveillance of Extremities.

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Wearing light colored clothing, especially white socks, can make it easier to see them before they bite. In the warmer months I prefer to wear khaki shorts, white shirt, and white socks. I have found that spraying my boots, socks, and legs with a deet repellent keeps off both ticks and chiggers. In Georgia, chiggers (harvest mites) are in many ways worse than ticks ... you can see ticks and get them off before they bite.

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I'm a real "tick magnet". I also hunt morel mushrooms in the spring and pick up a lot of ticks. I've learned that, despite the name, you seldom pick them up in thick woods. They climb to the top of tall grass and lie in wait for an animal or human to walk by. I always check my pant legs after walking through tall grass.

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Here are some pictures of the different sizes the little bloodsucker has when eating your blood. When you first see it it's like a very small dot on your skin. Sometimes you may feel it like a very small scab when you stroke your skin with your hand. When it's done it's job, it's disgustingly big, and you just can't believe this thing is stuck in your body.

 

Here's a real close up of a freshly stuck tick. At this stage it is like a needle's head or smaller.

 

fastinghonaFast.jpg

 

This is how small it is:

 

tick.jpg

 

And here's a picture of what it looks like when it has fed, many times bigger.

 

fastingen2.jpg

:lol: That does it. I'm never going outside again! Thanks for the responses, everyone. Now I know what to look for.

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It is actually not recommended to use the vasoline method as the tick will often reguritate their gut contents back into the wound increasing the risk of Lyme disease. The best route is to carry tweeezers or small pliers. We carry swiss champ knives and the small pliers have been great for tick removal.

 

A caution, ticks love places that are warm with lots of blood, as my poor sons discovered to their detriment. :lol: I'm not sure which scared them more, a certain area having ticks, or the pliers heading to that area to remove the ticks!

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It is actually not recommended to use the vasoline method as the tick will often reguritate their gut contents back into the wound increasing the risk of Lyme disease.

Quite right! Do not try this method, just get it out immediately. A good grip as close to the skin as possible with a pair of tweezers or a tick tool, then pull it straight out. Don't twist, it might break the tick body leaving pieces that may cause a disease.

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You don't need no tick tool. Just gently pull 'em off with your fingers. I am a dog groomer and have been pulling ticks off dogs for years. I have NEVER had a tick's head break off. Inspect the tick afterward to make sure you got it all, but you will almost always get the whole thing.

Edited by Phil & Cathy
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Best tool I've used, this thing even worked when our kid had over 100 embedded tick nymphs on him (think smaller than pinhead sized). Brings off the whole tick. Fingers and tweezers arent always so effective as they can actually squeeze bacteria-carrying tick juice back into the wound especially if the tick is embedded well.

 

http://www.tickedoff.com/

Edited by maingray
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I've heard of holding a lit cigarette near the tick until it backs out. Also using a q-tip soaked in acetone (nail polish remover) and draw continually smaller circles around the tick until it backs out. about two years ago I got nailed by a tick and ended up getting treated for Lyme. The physician said that in all of the cases he'd treated he'd never seen a tick or parts of a tick still embedded in a victim. I got nailed square in the middle of the back between the shoulders. One of the places that you cannot easily see. He advised not to use anything that would crush or squeeze the tick to remove it since it would likely cause parts of the tick to break off in the wound, or bodily fluids from the tick to be injected.

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Went caching with my bro-in-law, smtycolt yesterday. We hit one cache in a very overgrown woods and came out with about 10 tick apiece. The woods was on the edge of a cemetery and we had to strip down to find them all. Thankfully none of them had bit in yet and we were able to pull them off and finish them off with my Gerber needle nose pliers.

 

We hit another woods at the end of the day and managed to find a few more. Two of them sunk in on me before I was able to find them. I used a drinking straw to pry one of them loose. I slid the straw around his body, lifted his legs off and then POPPED him out, head and all.

 

There's a method of tick removal where you're supposed to use a drinking straw and a string tied around the tick. I don't know, seems to me like you'd be likely to pop his head off with that method. The straw alone worked well for me.

 

Thankfully most of ours are the larger variety around here. I was on antibiotics last year after a deer tick bite, but it was just a "better safe than sorry" kind of thing.

 

Oh, and no, I wasn't wearing one of THESE. That might have helped. :o

 

Bret

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They 'Ticks Me Off!!!' :P ... Had a tick the size of a tack crawling me yesterday when I got back into the truck after looking for a cache. It hadn't bitten in yet but he was looking for a place!!! .. .Ole wives tale is finger nail polish remover makes them back out and you can then grab them. ... and I'm secure enough in my manhood to talk about finger nail polish remover!!! :o

 

:D

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There's a method of tick removal where you're supposed to use a drinking straw and a string tied around the tick

 

You tied a string around your 'what'? I have never heard of such a thing ...

The string(thread) is supposed to close their jaws for easy removal. I've never tried it though.

 

Anybody else get itchy when reading this topic?

Edited by BlueDeuce
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Anybody else get itchy when reading this topic?

:D Me! Me!!

 

Back when I was into birdwatching bigtime, I read somewhere that it's a good idea to tuck your pantlegs into your socks. It looks ridiculous but it keeps the ticks outside your clothes for a longer period of time and gives you a better chance to notice them and remove them.

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WHAT ABOUT HOLDING A LIGHTER BEHIND THEM. THEY BACK OUT THEN

I hear that methods like this can cause the tick to vomit under your skin which leads to some nasty infection and disease possibilities...not to mention it's just plain oogie.

 

Bret

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how do you find ticks? for me, the easiest way is to go out in the woods and fields without deet and/or permethrin! almost guaranteed in NC. to remove them grasp them firmly about the body and pull steadily away until they pop out. check yourself after each outing. the worst are "seed ticks", the larval form of the lonestar tick. when you get one you're liable to get a hundred as they swarm up out of the grass! they seem to provoke a longer lasting allergic reaction, at least in me, as far as the itching and burning sensation. they are about the size of a pinhead. yuck! permethrin on clothing and shoes is the most effective preventative i've found. deet is also effective, though not for as long. good luck guys! -harry

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From the Canadian Lyme Disease Foundation Website

 

Tick Removal

The key is to not cause the tick stress. Old methods such as hot match, hot oil, suffocation or fingertips will cause regurgitation of the stomach contents into the victims blood which is what you don't want.

 

STRAW AND KNOT METHOD

Use an ordinary drinking straw and place it at a 45 degree angle over the tick (the straw is simply being used as a guide to direct the knot). Next, take a length of thread and tie a loose knot at the top or midsection of the straw. Now, slide your knot down the straw to the site. Position the knot underneath the tick's belly, so that the knot will encircle the embedded part only. Slowly tighten the knot to close snugly around the jaws. Now, remove the straw and pull the thread in a steady upward motion. This will cause the tick to detach, without regurgitation.

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The method our parasitology teacher taught us in vet school was just using your fingers (while wearing a rubber glove) to grasp the tick near the head and pull it out. She said that your fingers can provide the fine motor control you don't get with tweezers or hemostats. The rubber glove is to prevent infection with any diseases should the tick rupture. I have to admit that I usually just pull them off barefingered, and I know better. But if I don't have any open wounds and I wash my hands immediately, the risk is negligible.

 

Most veterinary authorities recommend using the tweezers. Either way, the most important part is grasping near the head--it pinches off the openings that could allow blood and other substances to flow back into the wound. Also, check your dog and yourself soon after coming back home. Many tick-borne diseases take several (4-48) hours for transmission, so early removal is best. I really don't get nervous about the ticks I find immediately. Now the one I found on my head 2 days after last being in the woods, that's what I worry about :(

 

Lyme Disease is the one that everyone's heard of, but there are other diseases, some of which are potentially deadly and more widespread. Diseases such as ehrlichiosis and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever is more prevalent on the East Coast, with North Carolina and Tennessee having the most cases annually, I believe. It should be called something like Appalacian Mountain Spotted Fever.

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hehe I live in the middle of missouri cant go outside without getting ticks :( but for some reason ticks dont like me i have been bitten only about 3 times in my life and i spent most of my life in missouri in the woods ;) my family and my dog on the otherhand is a different storry, my dog loves to get the ticks that are the size of a dime and green and different collors, i always grab a tissue and get as close to the skin as i can and as gently as possable without squeesing its insides out pull on it till it lets go and i have never had any problems with ticks, after i pull it out i either squash it or burn it in an ashtray or ground and watch it pop. "smells awfull ;) "

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From the Canadian Lyme Disease Foundation Website

 

Tick Removal

The key is to not cause the tick stress. Old methods such as hot match, hot oil, suffocation or fingertips will cause regurgitation of the stomach contents into the victims blood which is what you don't want.

 

STRAW AND KNOT METHOD

Use an ordinary drinking straw and place it at a 45 degree angle over the tick (the straw is simply being used as a guide to direct the knot). Next, take a length of thread and tie a loose knot at the top or midsection of the straw. Now, slide your knot down the straw to the site. Position the knot underneath the tick's belly, so that the knot will encircle the embedded part only. Slowly tighten the knot to close snugly around the jaws. Now, remove the straw and pull the thread in a steady upward motion. This will cause the tick to detach, without regurgitation.

I have used this method several times...it works great

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How do I find them? Delicious!! But seriously, folks...I don't have to find them, they find me. I used to call my dog "tickbait" until I noticed they seemed to like me better. Next time I find one embedded though (not that common actually, once in last 3 years), I'm going to try the straw thing, sounds like the real deal.

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...I'm going to try the straw thing, sounds like the real deal.

I've never heard of this either. It seems rather awkward. I'm visualizing, with a tick on my arm, holding the straw in my mouth while tying a one-handed knot to lasso the little critter.

 

(I've heard the Canadians use rat traps to catch their mossies.)

 

A good, quick one-handed method we're fond of here in the Hoosier state is called "Buck knife removal." Using a razor sharp knife, simply cut a small cone around the tick and with the point of the knife, just pop the tick (and surrounding flesh) onto the ground.

 

This method is not reccommended for sensitive areas of the body. :D:D

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I find them distasteful! Just found ANOTHER one me today as a matter of fact. I felt it as it was just biting me and removed it pronto! But thanks, now I'm all itchy again! I burn them after removing them. Fry you little buggers, FRY! Ick. Ptooey.

Edited by Planet
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