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How Can I Protect My Family From Ticks?

Enjoy the great outdoors, but don't forget about the threat of ticks. Ticks can carry diseases, including Lyme disease.

Try these tips:

  • Wear light-colored clothing to help you see ticks more easily.
  • Wear closed shoes or boots, long-sleeve shirts, and pants
  • Tuck pant legs into socks or shoes for extra protection.
  • Pull long hair back or wear a hat.
  • When hiking, stay on trails and avoid bushy areas with tall grass and leaf litter.
  • Use an insect repellent with 10% to 30% DEET. Always follow the directions for use carefully.
  • Clothes also can be treated with a specific insecticide (like permethrin) to help prevent bites.
  • Wash kids' skin with soap and water when they come back inside. If you've been in an area with ticks, wash all clothes in hot water and tumble dry on high heat before they're worn again.

Check your kids each day for ticks — look in and behind ears, in the groin area, behind the knees and under the arms. If you find one, remove it right away. Also remember to inspect pets, clothing, and camping gear, including backpacks and sleeping bags.