Wearing long pants, socks and using bug spray containing deet are a few ways to protect against ticks. (Black Press files)

Prepare yourself for tick season, says Island Health official

2017 saw three reported cases of Lyme disease

The sun is shining, the birds are singing and the ticks are out.

Officials say the risk of Lyme disease on the Island is still relatively low but are reminding people to be aware of ticks when they are out and about.

According to Dr. Dee Hoyano, medical health officer for Island Health, people should make checking for ticks on themselves, children and pets a regular occurrence after being outside.

READ ALSO: Citizen sightings needed for B.C. moose tick survey

Ecological conditions on Vancouver Island are the right climate for ticks and while the possibility the bacteria causing Lyme disease can also be found on those ticks she says the risk is low.

Hoyano says it’s best to take preventative measures to avoid having ticks on you in the first place, such as wearing long pants and socks, as well as using bug repellent that contains deet.

If you do find a tick on your body, she says the best way to remove it is with tweezers in order to remove the whole insect.

“The other important thing is you want to remove a tick as soon as possible after it’s attached to you,” she says. “We know the bacteria causing Lyme disease increases if that tick is on you for 24 hours or longer.”

READ ALSO: Victoria listed as endemic area for Lyme disease

Hoyano explains that Lyme disease can be treated very effectively with antibiotics but says the earlier the better. In 2017 Vancouver Island had three reported cases of the disease and in 2018 only one.

“One of the characteristics of Lyme disease is what’s called a bulls-eye rash,” she says. “It’s usually a circular red rash that spreads out from where the tick bite occurred.”

According to Hoyano, not everyone with Lyme disease will experience the bulls-eye rash so it’s good to be aware of the other symptoms including headaches or muscle and joint pain.

“That usually takes some time after the tick bites you so really if you have a tick on you today you’re not going to develop symptoms immediately and that’s why it’s important to remove the tick or try to avoid the tick in the first place.”

For more information on how to protect yourself from ticks visit healthlinkbc.ca.



kendra.crighton@blackpress.ca

Follow us on Instagram
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Some bystanders with fire extinguishers helped keep the fire under control. Photo courtesy Suzie Thomas
Bystanders keep fire from spreading near McIvor Lake turnoff

‘Just be vigilant and careful,’ says Campbell River fire chief

The Pier Street Farmers Market will once again take up residence on Sundays from May to Septmber at the parking lot across from the Community Centre in downtown Campbell River for 2021. Mirror File Photo
Pier Street Farmers Market returns to Cedar Street parking lot for 2021

…and it’s hoped that the addition of artisans this year will make it even better

Some recommendations from the Downtown Safety Select Committee have been approved by Campbell River City Council, including removing the glass stage covering at Spirit Square. Photo by Marc Kitteringham, Campbell River Mirror
Council going ahead with removing Spirit Square stage covering

But mayor acknowledges need for ‘welcoming, warm place with support services’

A small fire on North Rendezvous Island is the first wildfire of the season in the Campbell River area. Officials are asking people to take caution when burning during these dry conditions. BC Wildfire Dashboard
‘Conditions are tricky at the moment’ warns Coastal Fire Centre

Small fire on North Rendezvous Island first of the season for Campbell River area

Rainbow trouts thrashing with life as they’re about to be transferred to the largest lake of their lives, even though it’s pretty small. These rainbows have a blue tinge because they matched the blue of their hatchery pen, but soon they’ll take on the green-browns of their new home at Lookout Lake. (Zoe Ducklow/News Staff)
VIDEO: B.C. lake stocked with hatchery trout to delight of a seniors fishing club

The Cherish Trout Scouts made plans to come back fishing soon

For Leela Harrop, the recent death of her brother Raju Tiwari pushed her to sign up for the vaccine. Photo supplied
Island woman on fence about vaccine prompted by brother’s death

Leela Harrop of Comox says she did have issues with signing up online this past week

Royal Inland Hospital in Kamloops. (Dave Eagles/Kamloops This Week file photo)
RCMP intercept vehicle fleeing with infant taken from Kamloops hospital

The baby was at the hospital receiving life-saving care

Vancouver Police Const. Deepak Sood is under review by the Independent Investigations Office of B.C. after making comments to a harm reduction advocate Sunday, April 11. (Screen grab)
VIDEO: Vancouver officer convicted of uttering threats under watchdog review again

Const. Deepak Sood was recorded Sunday saying ‘I’ll smack you’ and ‘go back to selling drugs’ to a harm reduction advocate

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry prepares a daily update on the coronavirus pandemic, April 21, 2020. (B.C. Government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection rate persists, 1,005 new cases Friday

Hospitalization up to 425, six more virus-related deaths

Premier John Horgan receives a dose of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine at the pharmacy in James Bay Thrifty’s Foods in Victoria, B.C., on Friday, April 16, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. Premier John Horgan gets AstraZeneca shot, encourages others

27% of residents in B.C. have now been vaccinated against COVID-19

The Nautical Dog Cafe at Skaha marina is getting its patio ready in hopes Mother Nature will provide where provincial restrictions have taken away indoor dining. (Facebook)
‘A lot of instability’: B.C. restaurants in layoff limbo

As COVID-19 cases stay high, restaurants in British Columbia are closed to indoor dining

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau looks on as Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland responds to a question during a news conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Expectations high as Trudeau Liberals get ready to unveil first pandemic budget

The Liberals will look to thread an economic needle with Monday’s budget

Coldstream students took over the Your Letters page in the April 9, 2021, edition of the Vernon Morning Star to offer advice to adults about COVID-19. Interior Health took notice and offered their praise. (Vernon Morning Star)
‘We can get rid of COVID together’: B.C. kids share heartwarming advice

Grade 2 and 3 classes from a North Okanagan elementary took over Letters page of this Black Press newspaper

Most Read