Ticks are insects that feed on the blood of mammals, birds, and reptiles. Ticks that are found throughout Massachusetts include Deer ticks and dog ticks. When bitten by one of these ticks, they may spread different disease-causing germs. Some of the common tick-borne diseases in Massachusetts include Lyme Disease, BabesiosisAnaplasmosis, and Ehrlichiosis, and Rocky Mountain spotted fever.  Lyme Disease, often characterized by a rash (that may look like a bull’s-eye) and/or flu-like symptoms, is the most common throughout Massachusetts. Know the signs and symptoms of tick-borne diseases and see a health care provider if signs and symptoms present themselves.

Treatment for tick-borne diseases is readily available. Along with treatment, there are many different steps that can be taken to prevent disease. Steps to be taken to avoid tick-borne diseases: avoid direct contact with ticks, wear repellent when outside (repel with DEET or Permethrin), and always check your body for ticks and remove them properly if found. 

For more information about ticks, please go to the U.S. Center of Disease Control and Prevention website.