I (Ashley) grew up on a property spreading 50 acres, surrounded by nothing but trees.
I don’t remember hearing my parents being concerned about ticks, or ever doing ‘tick checks’ on me when I returned home.
Today, in that very same forest, I can’t imagine not doing them every single time our daughter Rowynne returns from an outside adventure.
So why would an 80’s baby have such a vastly different experience from one born in 2016?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say illness caused by ticks and mosquitos are on the rise. From 2004 to 2016, the number of cases of disease caused by ticks grew from 22,500 to 48,600. – source
Experts believe this is grossly underreported due to the lack of awareness.
Here is a chart with the increase in Lyme disease cases – a direct link to the increase in the tick population.
So here are 5 reasons to start caring about ticks:
- They carry tick-borne diseases: The most commonly known tick-borne disease is Lyme disease, but there are many others that can affect both animals and humans. HERE is a list from the Government of Canada.
- Their saliva has both anesthetic anti-inflammatory properties: Both of these properties means a tick bite can go unnoticed & undetected for days. On average, it’s believed it takes anywhere from 24-72 hours for a tick bite to transmit any tick-borne diseases, so we have an incredible opportunity here by doing tick checks regularly in combination with these other preventative measures.
- Their population is on the rise: Studies suggest climate change and the takeover of forests by residential areas lowers the predator populations (coyotes, foxes, wolfs), which results in more rodents like mice providing a host for the ticks to survive, carry & grow their population on.
- They are impossible to eradicate: Even with traditional pesticide applications, these arthropods are impossible to eradicate due to their life cycles & breeding characteristics. They can have up to 3,000 eggs!
- Children ages 5-9 are most at risk: When you combine a child’s immune system that is not fully mature, with the fact they spend the most amount of time low to the ground playing where ticks quest, they (among people over 55) are at the highest risk of being bit and developing a tick-borne disease. – source
So do you just stay inside for fear of getting bit by a tick? No way!
Get outside and enjoy the outdoors with preventative measures like these.
Bringing awareness to the uprise in ticks & the tick-borne diseases they carry is powerful information for you to know.
Being outside is a part of our mental health, so the best approach is always prevention for you and your loved ones.
Hire a licensed pest control professional to help protect your property & family as your first preventative measure.
And when you’re headed out for a walk in the forest, use preventative measures to keep you and your family safe!
The only natural mosquito & tick control in Durham & Clarington Region