The ongoing month of May is being observed as National Lyme Disease Awareness Month. Caused by black-legged ‘deer’ tick, Lyme occurs with symptoms like fever, headache, muscle aches, nausea and fatigue.
Ticks can be found everywhere. Lyme and other tick-borne diseases can be found in countries across Europe and Asia and in the Americas. Therefore, it is important to take precautions, as ticks are everywhere.
Experts affirmed that now it is no more about Lyme disease, as there are many diseases that have been emerging due to ticks. Black-legged ‘deer’ tick found in the northeastern United States carry the disease, like Lyme, Anaplasmosis, Babesiosis, Powassan virus and Borrelia miyamotoi.
There are other types of tick diseases as well like Ehrlichiosis and Southern Tick-Associated Rash Illness (STARI). But they are being carried by different ticks. Experts said that the newly identified tick-borne illnesses are Heartland virus and Bourbon virus. Therefore, it can be said that there are different types of ticks that cause different diseases.
These diseases show symptoms, including fever, headache, muscle aches, fatigue and nausea. Health experts affirmed that it is not necessary that there should be rash. Diagnostic testing is said to have limited value in the early stages as well as at the time when the treatment is more effective and later.
If the tick-borne diseases are not treated properly then it can cause severe complications. Antibiotics are effective in the acute phase, but experts affirmed that there is no treatment for the viral infections.
It is very important to have awareness. The best way to avoid getting the disease is not to get bitten. Some recommendations include-
” Avoid wooded and bushy areas, as here ticks can be found.
” If going on tracking then wear light-colored clothes. It is easier to see ticks in those clothes.
” Wear full-sleeves shirt. Basically, minimize exposed skin.
” Use insect repellants on exposed skin and clothing.