A step-by-step guide to avoiding ticks, mosquitoes, and other pests this summer
- Blood-sucking pests like ticks and mosquitoes can carry a host of diseases that can cause permanent harm or even death.
- Taking steps to keep ticks and mosquitoes away can make your summer safer and more pleasant.
- By using certain kinds of repellent, wearing the right clothes, taking precautions before you travel, and doing tick checks, you can keep yourself safe.
Nothing ruins a summer vacation like picking up a serious illness from a tick or mosquito.
There are plenty of reasons to spend time outdoors in the summer (and in any season, really), from afternoons in the park to camping trips. But when it's warm outside, pests like ticks, mosquitoes, and fleas are particularly active.
Those blood suckers aren't just annoying - they also carry serious diseases.
Mosquitoes can spread malaria, Zika, dengue, chikungunya, West Nile, and other illnesses. Ticks can spread well-known illnesses like Lyme Disease as well as other lesser-known but scary conditions like Powassan virus or an allergy to mammal products, especially red meat. In certain parts of the world, like the US Southwest or Madagascar, some fleas can still infect people with the plague.
Cases of many of these pest-borne diseases are rapidly on the rise, so it's worth doing everything you can to avoid getting infected. With a reasonable amount of preparation, you can cut down your risk of contracting a serious condition that could have a significant impact on your life.
Being aware of your risks, using the right products, and making sure to check yourself after being outside can all make a big difference.
Here's how to keep the summer fun, active, and as pest-free as possible.
If you're traveling or moving abroad, know about the diseases you can catch at your destination.
Know where you're most likely to pick up ticks or other pests.
Wear clothes that'll help protect your skin.
Treat clothes and camping gear to keep unwanted visitors away.
Use the right repellant on your skin.
Always conduct a post-excursion tick check.
Learn how to take a tick off the right way.
If you think you are sick, see a doctor.
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