From the Parish Nurse

Dear Church Family,

Finally there is sunshine and some warmth, it looks like we may not need to construct a fleet of arks. Unfortunately, with wet and warm weather comes the prediction for a bumper crop of ticks and bugs.  These little guys can spread disease so we need to be careful!

We have pets, 2 dogs.  Ticks apparently like dogs.  We have found several dead ticks in the house on the floor and on the dogs. We have never had a problem with ticks before, so I do believe this is an especially prolific tick year.  I treat the dogs with a liquid called Advantix.  It kills ticks and fleas when they bite the pet.  It seems to work well.  Did you know your pet can get Lyme disease from a tick bite?  (You can too!)

If you like to hike, or spend much time outside, check yourself for ticks when you come inside.  Wear white socks and long pants when hiking in tall grass and do not underestimate the ability of these little pests to crawl inside your clothes and lodge themselves in you groin area, armpits, scalp and even inside your naval. The CDC states “In most cases the tick must be attached for 36 to 48 hours or more before the Lyme disease bacterium can be transmitted”.  So, check yourself and shower after a hike.  The CDC also states that putting your hiking clothes in the dryer for 10 minutes on high should kill any tick hitchhikers.  They also recommend using a bug spray with DEET 20% or higher to discourage ticks.

If you do get a tick embedded in you, DO NOT burn or Vaseline it!! These methods are only going to kill it, and you will have to go to your doctor (like I did) and have the head of the thing dug out of you. Tons of fun!!! Use tweezers and pull it straight back and out.  I will have a sheet out on how to do this.  It generally works.  If you do find a tick in you, call your doctor to check on what they feel you should do (especially if you are unsure of how long the tick was in you).

The other buggy pest I had wanted to cover are bedbugs.  I don’t have enough space left to do it justice and with the prime travel and hotel stay season here I wanted to touch on it.  I will have information out on the glass tables in Fellowship Hall concerning ticks and bedbugs.  I will do my article next month on how to avoid bedbugs, but you can get a head start on it by reading the article.  (It’s one of those things that makes your skin crawl thinking about it!)  So, on that note, have a wonderful, safe and healthy vacation!!!

Call me with questions or concerns 315 759 9039.  God Bless, Beth

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