Tick season has struck and those nasty little buggers are plaguing kids, pets and outdoor enthusiasts alike! Here is a simple, painless easy tick removal tip to remove an embedded biting tick- as well as prevent future ticks from climbing all over you!
Ticks can transmit a number of painful, debilitating diseases including:
- Lyme Disease
- Tick Paralysis
- Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever
- (HA) Human Anaplasmosis
- Southern Tick-Associated Rash Illness
- Powassan Virus
- Bourbon Virus Disease
- 364D Rickettsiosis
- Heartland Virus
- B Miyamotoi Infection
- Colorado Tick Fever
- Relapsing Fever
- Rickettsia Parkeri Rickettsiosis
Recently there have been cases in which people have developed paralysis and even allergies to eating meat following a bite from a tick. That’s the bad news, the good news is- in order to get one of those illnesses, a tick must be feeding on its host for 24 hours, which means that you have nearly a full 24 hours to find and remove a tick before it can transmit one if it’s nasties to you!
Easy Tick Removal
Here is a simple, effective, yet painless way to remove an embedded tick from a pet, use a tick tornado tool. This simple tool allows you to quickly and painlessly remove the tick with the mouthparts fully intact without squeezing or touching the tick with your hands. It’s the most effective method we’ve found to date and we use it on our own kids and pets.
In fact, this is how I removed a tick from my grandpuppy’s ear using the painless Tick Tornado:
To successfully remove an attached tick it is imperative that you twist in one direction only. This helps ensure that the tick detaches with its mouthparts intact, rather than breaking off into the skin which can cause a secondary infection.
If you don’t have the Tick Tornado, here is the last resort method for removing a tick:
Tweezer Method to Remove a Tick
Grasp the tick firmly with a pair of tweezers as close to the head as you can, pull straight up using steady pressure, inspect the tick to ensure that all of the mouthparts are still attached to the tick and not embedded in the skin. Be sure to remove any parts still embedded using tweezers.
Tick Removal Methods you Should Never Use
Here is a method that is frequently shared on Social media that you should never use to remove ticks:
Squirt a glob of liquid hand soap to a cotton ball, Cover the entire tick with the soaked cotton ball for a full 20 seconds. The tick will cease biting, back out, and will remain stuck to the cotton ball when it’s pulled away.
This method has been shared stating that the ticks head is also removed and is not accidentally left in the skin, which commonly occurs when they are “yanked” out using tweezers. However, this method causes the tick to regurgitate the entire contents of its digestive tract into the skin of its host, thereby INCREASING the chance of contracting any diseases the tick may be carrying.
Never attempt to use vaseline/petroleum jelly, peanut butter, nail polish, or hot matches to detach ticks as these methods cause them to regurgitate into their host, spreading disease and increasing the risk of infections. Ticks only breathe 3-15 breaths per hour, so suffocating them really isn’t a viable option.
Once the tick has been safely removed, wash the area thoroughly with rubbing alcohol, iodine or soap and water to clean the bitten area.
Preserving the Tick for Testing
If you are unsure of how long a tick has been embedded in your skin, place it in a jar in rubbing alcohol so that it can be tested for Lyme and/or other diseases.
If you have a tick on your person and it is not yet biting, you can apply a piece of scotch tape to the tick, it will stick to it, fold the tape closed and throw it away. No need to burn it and have the nasty smell linger in your home, it won’t be able to get free.
DIY Repellent Spray To Prevent Ticks:
Tick Repellent №1
Add 1 cup of water to a small spray bottle, then add the essential oils. Seal tightly and shake gently to mix. Apply the spray to clothing, gear, skin, and footwear prior to going outdoors. This is a wonderful blend that we use while camping with great success. This blend is safe for dogs and kids alike.
Tick Repellent №2
Combine water and vinegar in a small spray bottle, then add the essential oils. Seal tightly and shake gently to mix. Apply the spray to clothing, gear, skin, and footwear prior to going outdoors. This blend works wonderfully to discourage ticks and other biting pests.
Other Effective Methods for Avoiding Ticks
- Wear light clothing
- Fill a small Spritz bottle with water, add 40 drops of Tea Tree Essential Oil, shake and spray on liberally.
- Apply a solution of 0.5% Permethrin on clothing or gear
- Avoid wooded areas and shady grasslands, stay within marked trails and always inspect yourself, your children and your pets daily to detect and remove any ticks as soon as possible.
- Sanson T. Tick-borne diseases. Medscape Drugs & Diseases from WebMD. Updated October 6, 2016. Available at: https://emedicine.medscape.com/article/786652-overview. Accessed April 17, 2018.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Ticks: tickborne diseases abroad. Updated June 1, 2015. Available at: https://www.cdc.gov/ticks/diseases/abroad.html. Accessed April 17, 2018.
- Moran D. ‘Emerging’ tick-borne virus found in Connecticut. Hartford Courant. April 10, 2015. Available at: https://www.courant.com/health/hc-emerging-tick-virus-found-in-connecticut-20150410-story.html. Accessed April 17, 2018.
- Baddour LM. Borrelia miyamotoi disease: an emerging tick-borne illness in the northeastern U.S. NEJM Journal Watch. June 8, 2015. Available at: https://www.jwatch.org/na38118/2015/06/08/borrelia-miyamotoi-disease-emerging-tick-borne-illness. Accessed April 17, 2018.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Heartland virus. Updated August 15, 2017. Available at: https://www.cdc.gov/ncezid/dvbd/heartland/index.html. Accessed April 17, 2018.
- Rivas A. New tick-borne disease identified in Kansas man, kills him in 11 days. Medical Daily. February 22, 2015. Available at: https://www.medicaldaily.com/new-tick-borne-disease-identified-kansas-man-kills-him-11-days-323146. Accessed April 17, 2018.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Bourbon virus. National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases. Updated June 28, 2017. Available at: https://www.cdc.gov/ncezid/dvbd/bourbon/index.html. Accessed April 17, 2018.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Tickborne diseases of the United States. Updated July 25, 2017. Available at: https://www.cdc.gov/ticks/diseases/. Accessed April 17, 2018.© Can Stock Photo Inc. / Eraxion