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Tips for Dealing with Ticks

St. Lawrence County Public Health Department Tips for Dealing with Ticks


It’s that time of year and ticks are out in St. Lawrence County. The St. Lawrence County Public Health Department warns that tick bites can transmit disease and make you, your family, and your pets sick. Lyme disease is the most commonly reported tick-borne disease in New York State however, ticks can spread other diseases such as babesiosis, anaplasmosis, Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, and Powassan encephalitis. While these diseases vary in their severity, all can cause serious illness and even death, if untreated.


Preventing Tick Bites:

  • Avoid tick-infested areas such as tall grass and dense vegetation
  • When possible, wear long pants, long sleeves, and socks to reduce skin exposure
  • Wear light-colored clothing to see ticks easier before they attach
  • Tuck pants into socks or boots
  • Use repellents and carefully follow directions on the label


Checking for Ticks:

  • Do a thorough body check if you have spent time outdoors
  • Check yourself, your children, and your pets often for ticks
  • Remember to check under arms, behind knees, and in hair
  • Bathe or shower within two hours after being outside


Removing Ticks:

  • Carefully remove ticks as soon as possible – disease risk is reduced if removed within 36 hours of bite
  • Use fine-tipped tweezers to grasp the tick near the mouth parts, as close to the skin as possible
  • Pull tick in a steady, upward motion away from skin. Do not twist or jerk the tick
  • Disinfect site with soap and water, rubbing alcohol, or hydrogen peroxide
  • If rash or flu-like symptoms appear, contact your healthcare provider immediately


Try to Make Your Yard a Tick-Free Zone:

  • Keep grass mowed
  • Remove leaf litter/brush to the edge of the lawn
  • Discourage rodent activity. Clean up and seal stonewall and small openings around the home
  • Move firewood piles and bird feeders away from the house
  • Manage pet activity by keeping dogs and cats out of the woods
  • Use plantings that do not attract deer or exclude deer through fencing
  • Move children’s swing sets and sandboxes away from the woodland edge and place them on a wood chip or mulch type foundation
  • Trim branches and shrubs around the lawn edge to let in more sunlight
  • Adopt less water-demanding landscape techniques with gravel pathways and mulches.  Create a 3-foot wide wood chip, mulch, or gravel border between your lawn and the woods
  • Widen woodland trails
  • Do not use pesticides near streams or any body of water


For Further Information:

New York State Department of Health Reminds New Yorkers to Protect Against Mosquitoes and Ticks During Outdoor Activities (

"Be Tick Free" for a Healthy Summer (