There is a danger lurking in the ‘green world’ that must be taken seriously—TICKS. The numbers have been increasing as a result of climate change, brutally cold winters are a thing of the past and blacklegged ticks can now be found year round whenever the temperatures are above freezing.

There are things you can do to decrease the risk of being bitten. No tick is a good tick. They can carry Lyme and other co-infections. Not all ticks are infected but risk is risk. Check yourself, your family, and your pets at least once a day: full body checks. Cover up: light coloured clothing, long pants and long sleeved shirts, closed in shoes with pants tucked into socks, use repellents. Walk in middle of trails.

If you get a tick remove with fine point tweezers or a tick removal device and be sure to save the tick. All ticks can be sent for ID and testing to Dr. Vett Lloyd at Mount A, New Brunswick. (http://tinyurl.com/l2795ul)

Pay attention to areas where tick warnings are present and take extra caution. If you do get a tick bite watch for signs and symptoms of infection. You can order tick removal kits to have on hand at www.canlyme.com. Prompt treatment is essential to try and avoid a chronic health problem. The number of cases reported in Nova Scotia for 2014 was 115 and in 2015 it had grown to 245. There are many cases that are undiagnosed/misdiagnosed and those getting diagnosed outside of Canada are not recorded in Canada. It is also important to check your pets on a regular basis and treat them with a preventative tick medicine and talk to your veterinarian about a vaccination for Lyme Disease.

It is still important to get out and enjoy the outdoors. Be aware because the ticks are out there!

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