Some doctors seeing a surge in tick bites | News
CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT)- We're getting close to what is considered peak tick season. This is when the little critters are most likely to carry diseases that could make you sick.
Some local doctors are seeing more people than usual coming in, complaining of being bitten. Back in February, people were already telling their doctors and county officials about finding the buggers in their backyard.
With the days about to get consistently warmer, experts urge you to take preventative steps to avoid being bitten.
"They're waiting and lying in wait for you to come by," says Dr. T. Michael Likins, Chesterfield biologist. "
"We've seen them emerge early and in great numbers."
Ticks are waiting in the grass, looking for their next meal.
"They're going to be looking for a blood meal," Dr. Likins said.
Doctor Douglas Powell at Chesterfield's Patient First Medical Center says he's seen more people checking in.
"We're seeing an upsurge in ticks, people finding ticks on their bodies," says Dr. Powell. "Tick bites are a little earlier this year than previous years."
He blames the mild winter and summer months that are fast approaching. Chesterfield's biologist agrees.
Dr. Likins says removing a tick is simple.
"All you need to do is get a pair of tweezers or forceps, grab it as close to your skin as possible and gently with a pull, it will come loose," he said.
Be extra cautious when you're outside.
"A thorough tick check, putting your pant leg into your socks, spraying repellent, all of these things are part of the overall package. Not one single thing is going to do it. You have to use all your tools in your tool box," he said.
Experts say to assume the tick is carrying an infection like Lyme disease and monitor your symptoms because it could hit weeks after a bite.
"They would complain about fever, body aches, headaches," says Dr. Powell.
While ticks may bug you out, doctors and experts say don't let it stop you from enjoying the warmer months ahead.
Doctors say if a tick is on your body for more than 36 hours you are more likely to get an infection.
Copyright 2012 WWBT NBC12. All rights reserved.
Top Midlothian Stories
Most popular stories from nearby communities
- Grand jury finds officer justified in Chesterfield shooting death
- Vandals set fire to mailboxes at Bon Air apartment complex
- Police investigating an early morning shooting in South Richmond
- 12 INVESTIGATES: Sex offender coached Central Va. youth basketball
- Richmond Police searching for person of interest in sunglasses thefts