• How to prevent dangerous diseases through ticks during summer


    Ticks are common this time of year, especially in the Mid-South. 

    With ticks come the dangers of a few different diseases. 

    Dr. Tyler Zerwekh with the Shelby County Health Department said in the Mid-South, there are three types of ticks – each associated with carrying certain diseases.

    "The deer tick is most commonly associated with Lyme disease," said Zerwekh.  

    The Center for Disease Control and Prevention said tick-borne diseases vary from region to region – and these regions are expanding. 

    New CDC research of tick-borne illness cases from 2004-2016 found Tennesses had 5,900 cases in that span.

    However, Arkansas led the way with 7,094 reported cases. And Mississippi lagged far behind with just 539. 

    Zerwekh told FOX13 the best thing to do to avoid ticks is to stay out of the woods this time of year. 

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    If you can't stay out of the woods, wear an insect repellent with DEET. 

    Wear long sleeves and tuck pant legs into boots to keep ticks out. 

    Once out of the woods, throw your clothes in a hot dryer.

    “It will kill ticks on a high heat setting and actually do a physical inspection around your body, specifically in areas where there are crevices – your armpit, elbows, behind your knees," Zerwekh said.

    If you find a tick on you, grasp it as close to the head as you can and pull straight up and out.

    "Immediately get a shower and wash the area with soap and water, and make sure you have debrided the wound, which means to remove the ticks mouth piece or pinchers," Zerwekh said.

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