How can I reduce my risk of getting ticks?

Object of the Month: 11/2012

What is it?:

Black-legged tick

Be careful hiking
Be careful hikingCourtesy Kafziel
Ticks are most active in the warmer months (April-September) but they can find you year round. Keep these thoughts in mind to reduce your tick risk:
• Avoid wooded or bushy areas with high grass.
• Walk in the center of trails.
• Use repellent that contain 20% or more DEET on exposed skin.
• Use products that contain permethrin on clothing along with gear like boots, socks, pants and tents. Permethrin remains protective through several washings.
• Shower or bathe soon after being outdoors to be able to quickly find ticks that might be on you.
• Conduct a full-body tick check using a hand-held or full-length mirror to view all parts of your body upon return from tick-infested areas.
• Also check gear and pets. Ticks can ride along on clothes or pets and then attach themselves later.

You can learn more about avoiding ticks at this Center for Disease Control webpage.