Attack of the Ticks

With the mild winter, this is going to be a terrific (or terrible) year for bugs. Hopefully our beneficial insects are flourishing, because I have already seen that some of the pests are. I have been finding ticks on my cats for a few months already, and the other day I found one on myself. So it is time to talk about dealing with tick bites.

I am concerned about ticks because of the number of diseases they carry, such as Lyme disease. The first step is to try to prevent tick bites. There is some evidence that essential oils like grapefruit may help repel ticks.  Tuck your pants into your socks so it is harder for the ticks to get to your skin. And when you are done with your outdoor activities, do a tick check to catch them before they bite you. If you are bitten by a tick, use tweezers to carefully remove it. Grab the tick as close to the skin as possible so you are not squeezing the body of tick, which may cause them to inject more bacteria into the body. Likewise, do not burn the tick as a means of removal. After the tick is removed, treat the area with a topical antiseptic. Sometimes, the tick has deposited bacteria on our skin that we scratch into the wound. I use tea tree oil on my tick bites. To deal with the itch of the bite, apply ozonated olive oil. A few applications should neutralize the itching. I have also found this to work for chigger bites where hardly anything helps. Finally, make note of where the tick bit you and watch that area for a red rash that can be the first sign of Lyme disease. Let’s enjoy the spring and stay healthy.

The Dreaded Tick

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11 responses to “Attack of the Ticks

  1. What is ozonated olive oil? New one for me!

    • It is olive oil that has had ozone bubbled up through it until it becomes thick like a salve. It is great for numerous skin issues. A local Fayetteville company has started making it. Their product is called Pur O3.

  2. This is really good information. Thanks Dr. Laurell!

  3. Susanna Brinnon

    I’ve found lately that if I put a dab of tea tree essential oil on a tick before I pull it off, it’s much easier to get the whole thing (head and body). I’ve tried watching it with a magnifying glass, and it’s hard to tell but it begins to wiggle its legs and I have the impression it’s trying to pull its head out! That may contribute to its being easier to extract. I’d love feedback on this.
    Thanks for your great articles.

    • That is very interesting. My only hesitation is that something irritating to the tick may make it spew more undesirable things into your blood. But this may be beneficial. I can’t really tell you.

  4. Pingback: Natural Insect Repellant | Dr. Laurell Matthews, ND

  5. My daughter seems highly sensitive to mosquito bites, they tend to get so big they look like spider bites. Anything for that? I’m going to try the Pur O3.
    Tea tree oil doesn’t seem to help much.

    • Yes, that is a scenario I have seen before. It is worth trying the Pur O3, but I haven’t used it yet for that group. I usually look at how the body deals with histamine.

  6. Hey just wanted to give you a brief heads up and let you know
    a few of the images aren’t loading correctly. I’m not sure why but I think its a linking issue.
    I’ve tried it in two different internet browsers and both show the same results.

    • Thank you for letting me know. They load great on my computer, but I have a mac. I will check them on another computer and see if I can figure it out.

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