Tick-Borne Disease-NJ Department of Health
What are tick-borne diseases?
Tick-borne diseases are illnesses that can be spread to humans by the bite of an infected tick. The most common tick-borne diseases in New Jersey are:
*Rocky Mountain spotted fever
How do tick-borne diseases spread?
Ticks become infected when feeding on small infected mammals such as white-footed mice and voles. An infected tick can then infect a person through a tick bite. It is possible to be infected with more than one tick-borne disease at the same time.
Disease-causing ticks in NJ
These are common ticks in New Jersey that may spread disease to humans:
*Black-legged ‘deer’ tick (Ixodes scapularis) can transmit Lyme Disease, anaplasmosis, babesiosis and Powassan disease.
*American dog tick (Dermacentor variabilis) can transmit Rocky Mountain spotted fever and tularemia.
*Lone star tick (Amblyomma americanum) can transmit ehrlichiosis and tularemia.
What are the symptoms of tick-borne diseases?
Early signs of tick-borne diseases can include:
How soon after a tick bite do symtoms occur?
*Lyme Disease 3-30 days
*Ehrilichiosis 7-14 days
*Anaplasmosis 7-14 days
*Rocky Mt. Spotted Fever 2-14 days
*Babesiosis 7-63+ days
What is the treatment for tick-borne diseases?
Most tick-borne diseases (Lyme Disease, Ehrilichiosis, anaplasmosis and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever) are caused by bacteria and can be treated with anitbotics. Babesiosis is caused by a parasite similar to malaria and a healthcare provider may prescribe medication. It is important to check for symptoms and talk to a healthcare provider if you’ve been bitten by a tick. Early treatment can be very effective.
Who gets tick-borne disease?
Anyone who is bitten by an infected tick may get a tick-borne disease. People who spend a lot of time outdoors, especially from April to September, have a greater risk of becoming infected.
How are tick-borne diseases diagnosed?
Most tick-borne diseases are diagnosed through blood tests and by discussing symptoms with a healthcare provider.
How to prevent tick-borne diseases:
*Know where ticks are: tickslive in or near wooded or grassy areas. Always walk in the center of trails to avoid contact with ticks.
*Keep your yard clean: mow lawns, clear brush and remove leaf litter.
*Apply insecticides: use EPA-registered repellent with DEET on skin and permethrin on clothing, boots and camping gear.
*Cover up: wear long sleeves and pants tucked into socks to prevent ticks from getting under clothes.
*Shower: showering can help find and wash off unattached ticks.
*Inspect: check your body for ticks.
Checks for Ticks:
Reduce your chances of getting a tick-borne disease by checking your body for ticks after being outdoors. Use a hand-held or full-length mirror to view all parts of your body.
Be sure to check these parts of your body:
*Under the arms
*In/around the ears
*Inside belly button
*Back of the knees
*In/around the hair
*Between the legs
*Around the waist
*On the scalp
What to do if you find a tick:
- Using fine-tipped tweezers, grab the tick close to the skin. Do not twist or jerk the tick as this may cause the mouthparts to break off and remain in the skin.
- With a steady motion, gently pull straight up until all parts of the tick are removed.
- After removing the tick, clean your skin with soap and warm water.
- Contact a healthcare provider if you develop symptoms of tick-borne disease.
Do not use petroleum jelly, hot matches, nail polish remover or other products to remove a tick.
Where can I find more information?
New Jersey Department of Health Communicable Disease Service: Vector-Borne Illness
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Tick-Borne Disease
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Stop Ticks
New Jersey Department of Health Communicable Disease Service
P.O. Box 369
Trenton, NJ 08625
NJ Health/Department of Health
Disclaimer: This information taken directly from the NJ Health/NJ Department of Health of Tick-Borne Diseases and I give them full credit for this information. Please remember to check yourself when you go outside. It is very important to check.