The Lebanon Planning and Development Department would like to pass along an important update from the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (NHDHHS) regarding tickborne diseases in our state. We aim to keep our community well-informed and prepared, so please take a moment to familiarize yourself with this information.
NHDHHS has recently reported a surge in tickborne diseases, including Lyme disease, anaplasmosis, and babesiosis. These illnesses can cause serious health problems if not promptly treated. With warmer weather upon us, we want to remind all residents to take necessary precautions when enjoying outdoor activities.
Here are some tips to stay safe and prevent tick bites:
- Use an EPA-registered insect repellent containing DEET, picaridin, IR3535, or oil of lemon eucalyptus on exposed skin and clothing.
- Wear light-colored clothing to make ticks easier to spot, and opt for long-sleeved shirts, long pants, and closed-toe shoes to minimize exposed skin.
- Tuck your pants into your socks to create a barrier against ticks crawling up your legs.
- Stick to the center of trails and avoid tall grasses, brush, and wooded areas.
- Perform a thorough tick check on yourself, your children, and your pets after spending time outdoors. Pay special attention to hidden areas, such as behind the knees, under the arms, and around the waist.
If you find a tick, remove it as soon as possible using fine-tipped tweezers. Gently grasp the tick near its head and pull upward with steady, even pressure. Once removed, clean the bite area with soap and water, rubbing alcohol, or an iodine scrub.
Remember to consult a healthcare professional if you or a family member experiences symptoms such as fever, chills, headache, fatigue, muscle and joint aches, or swollen lymph nodes within 30 days of a tick bite. Early detection and treatment are crucial in managing tickborne diseases.
For more information on tickborne diseases including repellent options, prevention strategies, and reporting options, please review the NHDHHS HAN: Tickborne Disease Update, 2023 (PDF).
Stay safe, healthy, and tick-aware!