Experts warn of ticks and the health problems they may cause during this high-risk season. Photo credit: Pixabay

Brno, Jun 5 (BD) – Summer is here and a season of sunny, pleasant weather awaits us. Naturally, people like to make the most of the warm weather by enjoying outdoor activities in nature. However, enjoying outdoor activities during the summer comes with some risks, including a higher risk of tick bites.

The Czech Hydrometeorological Institute (CHMI), in cooperation with the State Health Institute, publishes biweekly reports informing the public of “tick activity” every Monday and Thursday. The CHMI defines “tick activity” as the proportion of the tick population in a given locality that is active, or ready to latch onto a host.

The CHMI and State Health Institute report that this week’s tick activity levels, measured on a scale of one to 10, will remain at a degree of activity of 10 from Tuesday to Friday and nine on Saturday and Sunday.

For degrees of activity nine and 10, the CHMI and State Health Institute recommend that people use tick repellent when engaging in outdoor activities. People are discouraged from entering forests in high-risk areas and encouraged to use paved roads when walking outdoors. They are also encouraged to check their bodies for ticks, as well as their children’s and pets’ bodies, in both the evenings and mornings after outdoor activity, carefully removing any ticks they may find.

Ticks should be removed from one’s body as soon as possible in order to prevent Lyme disease.

According to an article by Daniel A. Kinderlehrer, M.D. from International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society (ILADS), squeezing a tick, rubbing ointments or lotions such as petroleum jelly over it, or burning it will increase the chance of disease transmission. Tweezers should be used to remove the tick by grasping it from the end that is attached to the body and gently pulling it out. The longer the tick is attached to the body, the higher the risk of getting Lyme disease.

There are several ways to avoid tick bites, according to MedlinePlus. Prevention methods include using a chemical tick repellent, wearing light-coloured and protective clothing, tucking your trousers into your socks and avoiding tick-infected areas.

It is important to be cautious and protect yourself and loved ones from health hazards while enjoying the outdoors during tick season. Summer and the pleasant activities it offers are the highlights of the year, but it is best to be careful, informed and prepared in order to truly enjoy this lovely season without any unpleasant surprises.

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