Tuesday, July 28, 2009

More Ticks, More Misery: A mother's experience in avoiding deer ticks and Lyme disease

As a mother of five that spends a lot of time with her children outside in a region with a large deer population, deer ticks and Lyme disease are a significant concern. Several people we know have been infected with Lyme disease with negative health consequences. For some unknown reason, it seems that many doctors do not test sick children (and adults) with symptoms of Lyme disease unless they are specifically asked. As a result, people often go undiagnosed and untreated for an extended period of time, making the condition worse. On our property, we do get the yard commercially sprayed against deer ticks, even the parts that are fully fenced off from the deer. In addition, we also consciously look out for them on our children and have over the years found and removed a few, usually near the hair line. They are tiny and difficult to spot if you are not looking for them.

From the "Room for Debate" column in The New York Times:

"Is the tick problem getting worse, or does it just seem that way at this time every year? Fighting back involves a lot of individual strategies: tucking pant legs in socks, using bug spray (while hating it), obsessively doing full-body checks at the end of a summer day and building deer fences. Yet the public as a whole has been ineffective in dealing with the plague of black-legged (deer) ticks, which spread Lyme disease, a problem linked to, among other things, the overpopulation of deer, which the ticks feed on. What is important to know about ticks and their environment, and what steps might be taken to control them?"

For the full story, click here.

1 comment:

Tatyana said...

Thank you so much for the information! Very good post!

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