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Wednesday, July 17, 2024

Ticks and youngsters: What mother and father ought to know – CHOC

Tips on how to shield in opposition to ticks – and what to do in case you spot one in your youngster

Benefit from the nice outdoor, however don’t overlook about the specter of ticks. Ticks can carry ailments, together with Lyme illness.

The excellent news is that, in keeping with the Orange County Mosquito and Vector Management District, the county has not had a confirmed case of Lyme illness acquired from native ticks. The district additionally routinely assessments for Lyme illness in native tick populations.

Simply the identical, it’s good to stay vigilant – particularly when touring to locations with extra threat. Right here, Dr. Olga Guijon, a CHOC pediatrician, solutions frequent questions on youngsters and ticks.

How can I shield in opposition to ticks?

Ticks don’t should turn out to be an issue in case you observe some primary ideas.

Wardrobe and equipment matter

  • Put on light-colored clothes that will help you see ticks extra simply.
  • Put on closed sneakers or boots, long-sleeve shirts, and pants.
  • Tuck pant legs into socks or sneakers for additional safety.
  • Pull lengthy hair again or put on a hat.
  • Garments additionally will be handled with a particular insecticide (like permethrin) to assist stop bites.

Select areas properly

  • When mountain climbing, keep on trails and keep away from bushy areas with tall grass and leaf litter.

Take post-hike measures

  • Wash youngsters’ pores and skin with cleaning soap and water once they come again inside. Should you’ve been in an space with ticks, wash all garments in scorching water and tumble dry on excessive warmth earlier than they’re worn once more.
  • Test your youngsters every day for ticks — look in and behind ears, within the groin space, behind the knees, in hair, in eyebrows and eyelashes, and beneath the arms.
  • Additionally bear in mind to examine pets, clothes, and tenting gear, together with backpacks and sleeping luggage.
  • Should you discover a tick, take away it instantly.

Are bug sprays with DEET secure for youths?

Insect repellents containing DEET have been examined and accepted as secure for youths older than age 2 months. Along with ticks, DEET helps shield in opposition to mosquitoes, biting flies, chiggers, and fleas.

Nonetheless, whereas DEET is accepted for infants 2 months and older,  mother and father ought to use sparingly in kids beneath 2  years of age as their pores and skin is completely different in comparison with older kids.

However make sure to learn all labels and take care while you use them:

  • Select a repellent with a ten% to 30% focus of DEET (search for N,N-diethyl-m-toluamide on the label). The upper the focus, the longer it lasts.
  • Use decrease concentrations (10%) if youngsters can be outdoors just for an hour or two.
  • In the event that they’re outdoors longer, think about using a repellent with as much as 30% DEET, which lasts round 5 hours.
  • Don’t apply a repellent with DEET greater than as soon as a day.

DEET will be placed on uncovered pores and skin, in addition to clothes, socks and sneakers. However don’t apply it to your youngster’s face, beneath clothes, on cuts or irritated pores and skin, or on the palms of younger kids. Listed below are another ideas for making use of DEET:

  • Don’t use a single product containing each sunscreen and DEET. Sunscreen must be reapplied usually, whereas DEET shouldn’t be used greater than as soon as a day.
  • DEET concentrations larger than 30% will not be simpler and the chemical (which is absorbed by way of the pores and skin) in excessive quantities will be poisonous. Comply with the instructions on the label.
  • Don’t apply repellent to youngsters’ palms as a result of they may swallow it in the event that they put their palms of their mouth. It can also irritate the eyes in the event that they contact them.
  • Don’t spray the repellent wherever close to the mouth.
  • Apply the repellent in an open space so that you just and your youngster don’t breathe it in.
  • Wash youngsters’ pores and skin with cleaning soap and water once they come again inside, and wash all garments earlier than they’re worn once more.

Different bug repellents don’t include DEET. The US Environmental Safety Company has a listing of accepted repellents. Their device will help you select the fitting one for your loved ones.

What to do in case you discover a tick in your youngster

First, don’t panic. It’s true that Lyme illness is the commonest tick-borne illness in the US. However your youngster’s threat of creating Lyme illness after being bitten by a tick could be very low.

To be secure, although, you’ll wish to take away the tick as quickly as attainable. The danger of an infection rises 24 to 48 hours after the tick attaches to the pores and skin.

Tick removing steps

  • Step 1: Use tweezers to know the tick firmly at its head or mouth, subsequent to the pores and skin. Use a magnifying glass, when you’ve got one, to see the tick clearly.
  • Step 2: Pull firmly and steadily till the tick lets go of the pores and skin. Don’t twist the tick or rock it backward and forward. Watch out to not compress the ticks physique. If a part of the tick stays within the pores and skin, don’t fear. It is going to ultimately come out by itself.
  • Step 3: Launch the tick right into a jar or zip-locked bag.
  • Step 4: Wash your palms and the location of the chunk with cleaning soap and water.

By no means use petroleum jelly or a scorching match to kill and take away a tick. These strategies don’t get the tick off the pores and skin, and might make it burrow deeper and launch extra saliva, which makes it extra prone to go a illness.

What are the indicators of tick-related ailments?

Most tick bites are innocent and don’t want medical therapy – particularly in Orange County, CA. However some ticks (just like the deer tick, wooden tick and others) can carry dangerous germs that trigger ailments like Rocky Mountain noticed fever and Lyme illness.

Listed below are some issues to search for:

  • a crimson bump ringed by an increasing crimson rash, which seems to be like a bull’s-eye (Lyme illness);
  • crimson dots on the ankles and wrists (Rocky Mountain noticed fever); or
  • flu-like signs akin to fever, headache, tiredness, vomiting and muscle and joint aches.

When ought to I name the physician about tick bites?

Name your physician if:

  • Your youngster has had a tick chunk, particularly if the tick may need been on the pores and skin for greater than 24 hours. Typically, medical doctors prescribe a preventive dose of antibiotics for youths at excessive threat for Lyme illness.
  • A part of the tick stays within the pores and skin.
  • A rash of any form develops (particularly a red-ringed bull’s-eye rash or crimson dots on wrists and ankles).
  • The chunk space seems to be contaminated (rising heat, swelling, ache, or oozing pus).
  • Your youngster will get signs like a fever, headache, tiredness, stiff neck or again, joint swelling, or muscle or joint aches.
  • Your youngster has facial paralysis (can’t transfer areas of the face).

What do medical doctors do when you’ve got Lyme illness?

A pediatrician might be able to diagnose Lyme illness based mostly on a toddler’s bull’s-eye rash, or they may order a blood check.

If Lyme illness is confirmed, the physician will prescribe an antibiotic, a drugs that kills the spirochetes, the micro organism carried by some ticks.

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