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TBay first confirmed case of Lyme disease

TBay first confirmed case of Lyme disease

Now is the time to do a Tick Prevention Plan

THUNDER BAY, ONTARIO January 14, 2020  (LSN)  For the first time since mandatory reporting a Thunder Bay resident has been confirmed to be suffering from Lyme disease. According to the Thunder Bayt District Health Unit., said Dr Ken Deacon, 

After the Ontario Ministry of Health designated Thunder Bay as a risk area last year, city doctors are required by law to report any cases where they treat patients with a specific symptom of Lyme disease–a large "bullseye" rash.

Now is the time to do a Tick Prevention Plan Once the temperature reaches 5c or 40F ticks become active 

The City of Thunder Bay and immediately surrounding area are now considered a risk area for Lyme disease. About 10% of the blacklegged ticks in this area are infected with Lyme disease bacteria.

These bacteria can be transmitted to humans after a blacklegged tick has fed for 24 or more hours.

Most ticks found in the Thunder Bay District are wood ticks and do not carry the Lyme disease bacteria. Visit our Lyme Disease fact sheet page for more information. 

Blacklegged ticks (BLTs) are transported by birds; therefore, you can pick the ticks up anywhere in the country or the city.  BLTs prefer longer grass where they are protected from moisture loss, so keep your lawns cut to two to three inches.

 

Prevent the Bite

Ontario’s Ministry of Health and Long-Term care encourages residents to:

  • COVER UP: Protect yourself when you are active outdoors; wear long sleeves, tuck pants in socks and wear light coloured clothing so ticks are more easily noticed 
  • USE BUG SPRAY: Follow the directions and use bug spray containing DEET or Icaridin on exposed skin to keep bugs away.
  • CHECK YOURSELF & YOUR PETS: Do a tick check before heading indoors (home, camp, tent). Look in warm, hidden areas on the body including armpits, in and around the hair and ears, between the legs, and the back of the knees. Don’t forget the family pet; in and around the ears, on the belly and between the toes. A Tick Check Zone poster (PDF) provides ideas on where to look on a human and a dog. 

Know the Tick

The Don't Get TICKED Outdoors Poster (PDF) includes images of both a wood tick and a blacklegged tick. Females are usually larger than the males and the size of each tick depends on the stage of the lifecycle; eggs to larva to nymphs to full-size adults. 

Ticks can range in size from a poppy seed in the nymph stage to a pea when they are engorged (full of blood). Wood ticks are larger in size than the blacklegged ticks.

For example:

  • a female wood tick is about 0.5 cm long
  • a female blacklegged tick is about 0.3 cm long

Here is a photo of blacklegged ticks at different stages of feeding. The largest is filled with blood after feeding: 

Ticks  Thunder Bay District Health Unite  Lake Superior News Check for Ticks   Lake Superior News

 

Removing a Tick from Your Dog

Using a pair of tweezers is the most common and effective way to remove a tick. But not just any tweezers will work. Most household tweezers have large, blunt tips. You should use fine-point tweezers, to avoid tearing the tick and spreading possible infections into the bite area.

Spread your dog’s fur, then grasp the tick as close to the skin as possible. Very gently, pull straight upward, in a slow, steady motion. This will prevent the tick’s mouth from breaking off and remaining embedded in the skin. People often believe it’s the head of the tick that embeds in the skin. But ticks don’t have heads, in the conventional sense, so what gets inserted into your dog is known as “mouth parts.”

Another option that is even easier to master is the use of a tick removal hook. It’s especially useful if you live in a tick-dense area where you dog is frequently playing host to the vexing little critters. There are several types of hooks, like the Tick Twister or the Tick Stick. You simply put the prongs on either side of the tick and twist upward.

Removing tick from your Pet Lake Superior News

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