A Guide To Ticks & Lyme Disease In North Reading
Most people expect to deal with parasitic pests like ticks when they're out exploring nature, but discovering they've taken up residence on your North Reading property can be a terrifying shock. It's not a common infestation, and they can't exactly make that trip on their own, so there are multiple elements that have to come into play for this to happen. Still, ticks are dangerous to have around your home, and getting rid of an infestation is no walk in the park.
Appearance And Facts About Ticks In North Reading
There's only one tick in North Reading that homeowners should be concerned about, and that's the deer tick. Fully grown, these arachnids are roughly 2 to 3.5mm in length, which is less than ¼ of an inch. They have flat, oval-shaped bodies, hardened exoskeletons, and their coloring is an orange-ish red with a dark brown to black dot directly behind their head.
It might surprise you to know that ticks don't have eyes, ears, or a nose. In fact, the head of a tick is nothing more than its mouth. Ticks have something called a Haller's organ located in their front legs, and it allows them to sense changes in temperature, CO2 levels, and humidity. These changes in their surroundings alert them to possible hosts nearby, so while they're perched on a low branch or blade of tall grass, they can simply grab on when their potential meal source passes by.
Ticks And Lyme Disease: Fact Vs. Fiction
While it is true that deer ticks are the most common carriers of Lyme disease, they don't create it on their own. Not all deer ticks are carriers, either; they pick it up from a previous meal. The bacteria Borrelia burgdorferi is what causes Lyme disease, and it's commonly spread through wildlife like mice and deer.
If bitten by an infected tick, it usually takes 24-36 hours before the bacteria is transmitted so if you catch a tick bite early on you may be lucky enough to avoid it. It's always best to stay on the safe side, though, so keep an eye out for any of these symptoms in the oncoming weeks, and seek medical care if you experience any of the following:
- Bulls-eye patterned rash
- Soreness and stiffness in joints and muscles
- Generalized full-body discomfort
- Swollen lymph nodes
- Nerve pain and tingling
- Heart palpitations
- Shortness of breath
- Facial palsy (drooping or loss of muscle tone in one or both sides of the face)
How To Keep Ticks Away From Your North Reading Property This Summer
Since ticks can't relocate on their own, their migratory fates are left in the hands, paws, hooves, and wings of their hosts. Their primary food sources are wildlife; birds, rodents, and deer are all common hosts, but even humans can cause an unwanted infestation on their own properties. Thankfully, there are plenty of ways to reduce your chances of a tick infestation on your North Reading lawn:
- Keep tight-fitting lids on all indoor and outdoor trash cans
- Proper food storage; store all dried goods in airtight containers, and never leave food sitting out overnight
- Wipe down counters, eating areas, and food prep surfaces daily
- Trim back low-hanging tree branches and unruly bushes
- Mow your lawn weekly
- Always wear bug repellent whenever you spend time in nature
- Thoroughly check yourself over after returning home from the great outdoors
Prevention won't eliminate ticks that have already invaded your lawn, but a local pest control company like Master Mosquito Control can. We specialize in exterminating dangerous infestations like mosquitoes and ticks, and we only use the highest quality pest control products and equipment available. We're so dedicated to customer satisfaction that we back each treatment with a 100% pest-free guarantee; if you're still having pest problems after we've treated, we'll come right back out and re-treat at no additional cost. So get in contact with us today, and find out which treatment plan is right for you.