August 6, 2014
tick bite

It is very easy to miss a tick bite, as ticks can be no larger than a head of a pin. If you notice a tick on your skin, it is important to remove it as soon as possible to reduce your chances of developing a Lyme infection.

If you or your pet have recently spent time outdoors and you notice a lesion on your skin with any of the following characteristics - you should be evaluated for a possible tick bite.

  • A bite with a central scab
  • A bite with a surrounding red rash
  • A bite with a dark, bruised appearing center
  • A bite with black specks within it that may be insect legs

There are multiple products specifically designed for tick removal that are effective, inexpensive, and widely available in pharmacies.
If one of these products is not available to you, using a fine-tipped tweezers will also suffice.

  1. Using fine-tipped tweezers, grasp the tick as close as possible to its attachment site on the skin.
  2. Using even pressure, pull upward slowly & steadily. Be sure not to twist or jerk the tick- if you do, parts of the tick may remain in the skin. If a portion of the tick, usually the mouth, is still embedded in the skin - leave it alone and allow the skin to heal.
  3. After the tick is removed, clean the area of the bite thoroughly using rubbing alcohol, soap and water, or an iodine scrub.
  4. Dispose of the tick by submersing it in alcohol, sealing it in tape, or placing it in a sealed bag or container.

Some providers may prescribe you a prophylactic dose of an antibiotic after a tick bite to further reduce your chances of developing a Lyme infection.
If you have a tick embedded that you are unable to remove or are concerned that a lesion on your skin may be a tick bite, visit the nearest PhysicianOne Urgent Care center to be seen as soon as possible. No appointment necessary, open 365 days/year.
Services available at PhysicianOne Urgent Care include:

  • Tick Removal
  • Rash assessment
  • Preventative treatment for Lyme and other tick-borne diseases

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