Simple tips to avoid ticks bites include:
- Wear light-colored, protective clothing-long-sleeved shirts, long trousers, boots or sturdy shoes, and a head covering. Tuck long pants into socks and boots.
- Apply insect repellant containing 10% to 30% DEET primarily to clothes.
- Use products that contain permethrin to treat clothing and gear, such as boots, pants, socks, and sleeping tents. Or look for clothing pre-treated with permethrin.
- Walk in the center of trails so weeds do not brush against you.
- Check yourself, children, other family members, and pets for ticks every two to three hours (especially ears, hair, neck, legs, and between the toes).
- Bathe or shower as soon as possible after coming indoors (preferably within two hours). This will wash away unattached ticks and offer a good chance to thoroughly inspect yourself.
- Running your clothes in a hot dryer for 10 minutes before you wash them will kill any ticks that may be there. If the clothes require washing first, hot water is recommended. Cold and medium-temperature water will not kill ticks effectively. If the clothes cannot be washed in hot water, tumble dry on low heat for 90 minutes or high heat for 60 minutes. The clothes should be warm and completely dry.
- Check outdoor pets often for ticks. Ticks can "hitch a ride" on pets and into your home. Tick collars, sprays, shampoos, or monthly "top spot" medications help protect pets against ticks.
View Lasalle County Illinois Health Department Lyme Disease Brochure (PDF)
Please Note: If you become ill with a fever and/or rash after being in an area where ticks may be, please contact your healthcare provider. The most common symptoms of tick-related illnesses can include fever, chills, aches, pains, and rash (not in all cases). Early recognition and treatment of the infection decrease the risk of serious complications.