There are many things we don’t know about ticks. At best, most of the information we have about these tiny creatures are false. You think I am wrong, right? Let me burst your bubble. You probably think ticks are insects, right? Well, you thought wrong. Maybe you also felt their bites are harmless. Well, you also “felt” wrong.
Ticks are not insects. They are arachnids. They do not jump neither do they fly. Also, when they bite, they have the potential to transmit diseases to their host. It is likely that these creatures mean no harm when they bite because actually that is the only way for them to survive. They feed on the blood of mammals, reptiles, amphibians, and birds. When an infected tick with viruses or bacteria bites, it poses a serious risk to human health.
Where can Ticks be found?
Ticks are located on walls, under leaves, backyards, on ground cover, and near structures where rodents and other small mammals are actively found.
Harmful illnesses caused by Ticks’ bites
The tick that bites you will determine the illness that you are likely to come down with.
The following species of ticks: black-legged (deer), dog and lone star ticks, can actually transmit about 15 diseases.
However, the most dangerous of these ticks is the black-legged species; it can transfer minimum of five disease-causing agents such as
- Borrelia miyamotoi
- Lyme disease
- Powassan virus.
This is rare and doesn’t really come with symptoms. However, when some get infected, they tend to develop symptoms like fever, headache, chills, body aches, loss of appetite, nausea body aches or fatigue.
This was discovered 10-15 years ago in the US, and it causes relapsing fever. Dr Jennifer Lyons, chief of the Division of Neurological Infections and Inflammatory Diseases at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, said most infected people bitten by ticks will never develop any symptoms, while some will develop symptoms like a headache and fever.
15% of patients who have these symptoms are really not going to survive, she said. “…But at least 50% of survivors will have unresolvable long term neurological damage and a little rash on your skin.”
Lyme disease is the most common tick-borne disease so far and the CDC receives reports of nearly 30,000 cases of this illness. This illness can cause fever, headache, fatigue and a bulls-eye rash known as erythema migrans. If left untreated, the infection can spread to joints and the heart.
We will continue in the next series… watch out. Remember, health is wealth and information is power.