Sign and tick bites

Sign and tick bites - How dangerous is that?

Do you know that you walk a tick with every walk in the forest? Or even several ... And do you know that you can get a tick, Lyme disease (Lyme borreliosis)? A large part of the tick is infected with a bacterium (Borelia burgdorferi) that causes this disease. A bacterium can get into the body of humans or animals through a tick bite.
The longer the tick is on your skin, the greater the chance that you become infected. Very wise to remove ticks as quickly as possible! Or even better: prevent!

What is Lyme disease?

Lyme disease is an infectious disease that is transmitted by ticks. The disease progresses in three consecutive stages, each giving specific symptoms. It happens, however, that a stage goes by without complaints.
If you have symptoms that could indicate Lyme disease, please contact your GP or the GGD in your area.

Complaints in the first stage

The first complaints may arise three days to three weeks after the tick bite. Around the site of the bite a red, ring-shaped skin rash can develop, which gradually expands. This skin rash is a reason to go to the doctor. You can also feel flu-like with symptoms such as headache, fever and fatigue.

Complaints in the second stage

A few weeks or months after the tick bite, you may suffer from radiating pain in the arm or leg, loss of facial muscles, double vision, tendency to fainting, cardiac arrhythmias and pain and swelling of the (knee) joints.

Complaints in the third stage

At this stage, the disease has become chronic. Months to years after the infection you may have to deal with a chronic skin condition, severe walking or orientation disorders and joint complaints.

Pets and sign

There is no clarity about the complaints that pets get from Lyme disease. High fever, stiff joints and a lack of appetite are sometimes mentioned. You can ask a veterinarian about this.

Reporting a tick bite

The Nature Calendar and Wageningen University have started mapping the occurrence of ticks in the Netherlands and where and when you can be bitten by ticks. The aim is to better understand under which circumstances and in which environment you are at risk of a tick bite. Another goal is to inform the Dutch public about how to deal with ticks.

Remove within 24 hours

When you discover a tick on your skin during or after the nature visit, it is important to remove it as soon as possible. With removal within 24 hours the chance of contamination is virtually excluded.

To the doctor

If you have one or more complaints after a tick bite, you should visit your doctor. Name the date you were (possibly) bitten. Consult your doctor if you get complaints after a tick bite that you have contracted abroad. Outside the Netherlands, ticks can (also) transmit diseases other than Lyme disease.

Therapy

Lyme disease can be treated with a course of antibiotics. The sooner you are there, the easier and faster the treatment and the better the result. There is no vaccine available in the Netherlands to prevent Lyme disease. Marks of encephalitis occur in other European countries (including Austria and the Czech Republic). There is a vaccine available for this. For information about vaccinations you can go to your doctor or the local GGD.

What is a tick?

Sign (Acarina or Acari) lives on the blood of vertebrates. They bite into the skin and as soon as they have accumulated enough blood (this can vary from a few hours to even a few days), they only let go.
The bite of a tick is not painful and therefore a tick bite is not always noticed. From March to November they live in forests and dunes; they prefer bushes and tall grass. Ticks have eight legs, just like the spider. A tick is thus different from insects, which have only six legs. Yet they are more closely related to mites and less to the spider. However, a tick larva does have six legs until its first molt.

Palpen

At his head there are two probes (palps) on both sides, with his suction snout in between. The suction muzzle consists of a barbed toothed barbed. The suction muzzle is protected by two jaws (chelating) that help to pierce the skin.
On the back and the front of his body is at the hard sign, a shield (scutum). Sometimes even more than one. In addition to this shield, the body's skin is rather stretchy so that the tick can expand considerably during and after his meal.

What are they eating?

Blood and body fluids from vertebrates. This includes man. A tick needs three blood meals for its development from one or more hosts. The more hosts, the greater the risk of transmitting diseases.
Wait patiently in the thicket until an innocent host walks by.
Hard signs undergo two molasses during their lives. By far the most types of hard ticks (Lxodidae) have three hosts. Treating all three stages (larva, nymph, adult).

The occurrence of a tick bite

When you visit a forest or dune stay on the paths as much as possible and avoid bushes and tall grass. Wear clothing that covers your body, such as closed shoes, long pants, long-sleeved shirt, cap. When there is a lot of ticks in an area, you can also rub the skin with an insect repellent with about 30% DEET. (Adult up to 50% DEET, young children up to 20% DEET).

Check for tick bites

Check every night under the shower or in your body for any sign. Look especially at places where the skin is thin or warm and moist, such as in groin, knee cavities, armpits and on the stomach. Around the site of the bite a red, ring-shaped skin rash can develop, which gradually expands. In children, the sign is often found on the head, in the neck, behind the ears and at the hairline.

Remove the tick

When you discover a tick on your skin during or after the nature visit, it is important to remove it as soon as possible. With removal within 24 hours the chance of contamination is virtually excluded.

Drawing pliers

Sign can be removed with a drawing pliers or tweezers. This has to be done carefully, because if you flatten the tick, it will empty its stomach contents plus the harmful bacteria under the skin of its host.

Tweezers

Removal of the tick with tweezers can be done in the following way:

  • Take a pair of tweezers that allow you to grasp the tick without pressing it flat, for example an epilation or drawing tweezer. The drawing tweezer is available at drugstore or pharmacy.
  • Place the tweezers over the tick as close as possible to the skin. You must not stun the tick in advance with oil, alcohol, burning cigarette or other means because the tick can therefore frighten its stomach contents with bacteria in the skin. The chance of infection is therefore increased.
  • Carefully pull the tick out of the skin with a slight twisting motion and do not push the tick flat.
  • Disinfect the wound with seventy percent alcohol, iodine tincture or iodine ointment. Write down the date in your calendar. Watch the skin around the tick bite in the following weeks.

Without tweezers

Even without tweezers you can remove a tick. Turn the tick with one finger so that the back of the tick rotates (as you turn a loose screw). Keep this for at least three minutes. As a result, the tick continually acquires a rotational movement (torsion) whereby it automatically releases, usually within half a minute.

Pay attention

Write down the date in your diary with every tick bite so that you can keep a close eye on any contamination. The first complaints may arise three days to three weeks after the tick bite. Around the site of the bite a red, ring-shaped skin rash can develop, which gradually expands. Contact your doctor immediately if one or more complaints arise.

Did you know

  • A tick very economical with its energy handles and therefore a year without food!
  • A woman's stroke 50% (or more) of her body weight in hundreds to thousands of eggs?
  • Is there a sign outside the Benelux with a poison that can lead to paralysis symptoms?
  • Do not just sit in the bushes, but also just on a blade of grass?
  • They detect their potential host through radiated body heat and odor?
  • A tick first gently walks around your skin before it bites itself?
  • A tick that is not filled with blood is only a few millimeters wide?
  • That a full-sucked tick can be more than one centimeter in size?
  • You can not become immune to Lyme disease and therefore every new tick bite forms a new chance of infection.
  • In the Netherlands in the past ten years the disease has increased significantly?
  • Climate change in the Netherlands is very favorable for the tick?

Video: Tick Bite

Leave Your Comment