Tick Bite Recommendations
As the summer approaches, Maine CDC is answering many questions about what to do after a tick bite. Through Maine CDC’s syndromic surveillance system it is apparent that emergency rooms are seeing a dramatic increase in visits for suspected tick exposures as well.
What to do after a tick bite:
- Remove the tick as promptly as possible. Tweezers or tick spoons are the preferred method to remove ticks quickly and safely. If there are mouthparts still left in the skin after removal, it is not necessary to dig them out. If the tick is no longer attached there is not a risk of transmission of a vectorborne disease. The area around the bite should be cleaned with antiseptic.
- Identify the tick if possible. Dog ticks in Maine are not known to carry disease and are therefore a nuisance but not a public health risk. The University of Maine Cooperative Extension offers a free tick identification service.
- Monitor for symptoms for 30 days after a deer tick bite. Some of the symptoms may include: fatigue, joint pain, bulls eye rash and fever. Please seek treatment if you experience one or more of these symptoms.
Tick and tickborne disease information is available on Maine CDC’s website http://www.maine.gov/dhhs/mecdc/infectious-disease/epi/vector-borne/index.shtml
Tick identification is available free of charge through the University of Maine Cooperative Extension https://extension.umaine.edu/ipm/tickid/