Remove Ticks At Home In 3 Steps
Walks in the woods, sitting in the grass, playing outside - all perfect ways to enjoy the warmer weather in spring and summer. There's just one problem, and that's that all these activities put you, your family, and your pets at risk from ticks. If you've found a tick, you're probably wondering how to remove it - and probably panicking a bit too. Read on for our simple ways to remove ticks at home to keep your loved ones safe.
Will ticks remove themselves?
Whether you're worried about having the right equipment or accidentally leaving part of the tick behind, there are many reasons you might feel anxious about removing a tick. So perhaps you're wondering - do you even need to?
If you don't find a tick that's attached to you or a pet, or you find one and don't do anything about it, yes it will eventually detach itself. Ticks attach themselves to a host, feed on their blood, and will fall off when they are full. This can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks.
However, it's important to try to remove ticks as soon as possible. Why is that? Ticks can transmit diseases directly into their host's bloodstream while they are attached. That means the longer you leave a tick attached, the more chance they have of infecting you or your pet with a dangerous disease like Lyme's or babeliosis.
Tick-borne diseases can have lifelong effects and even be fatal - so be proactive when looking for ticks, and make sure you've got the tools and know-how to remove them correctly. It's not as difficult as it seems!
Will vets remove ticks?
If you're still feeling anxious about removing a tick from your pet, perhaps you'd rather leave it to the professionals. Will a vet remove a tick from your dog? Or will groomers deal with ticks?
Yes, vets and groomers are usually able to remove ticks for you - at a cost, of course. If you're nervous or don't have the right equipment, it's a good option to be sure the tick is removed correctly.
However, time is of the essence when you get a tick bite. A tick only has to be attached for two days to infect you, your child or your pet with Lyme Disease. Being able to remove a tick yourself means being away from home or your local vet being busy won't delay the removal of the tick.
Can you remove ticks with tweezers?
So it's time to remove a tick yourself. But there's no need for a fancy tool, right? Surely you can remove a tick with just a normal pair of tweezers?
In a word - no. Ticks attach themselves by embedding their mouthparts into the skin - and if these are not removed entirely, there is still a strong risk of disease transmission.
Tweezers, unfortunately, are not up to the task. If you try to remove a tick with tweezers, you risk snapping the body of the tick, leaving the nasty mouthparts behind. Alternatively, tweezers can squeeze the tick, resulting in it actually vomiting into the bloodstream - which again increases the risk of disease, as well as just being disgusting.
Tick Twister® tick removers are specially designed to remove a tick entirely and safely. These handy tools are reusable, small enough to keep in your wallet or first aid kit, and cost just £3.75. A proper tick removing tool is, without a doubt, your best defence against Lyme Disease.
What helps remove ticks?
There's lots of home remedies for ticks floating round the Internet that claim you can remove ticks with the contents of your kitchen cupboard. Some say you can remove ticks with Vaseline, tea tree oil, alcohol, peppermint oil, even vinegar!
But fortunately, there's need to walk around smelling like a fish and chip shop. Trying to smother a tick or encourage it to detach using any substance is usually a bad idea. You mostly just risk stressing out the tick, leading it to regurgitate into the wound and transfer any diseases over to its host.
The same goes for using a lighter or trying to freeze the tick off. Just stick with a tick remover tool - it's safer for everyone.
Remove ticks at home in 3 steps
So that's plenty of ways that you shouldn't use remove ticks. But what's the correct method to removing ticks at home? We've broken it down into three simple steps to remove an attached tick and keep your family safe.
1. Use your Tick Twister® tool
When you have found a tick, a Tick Twister® tool is the easiest way to remove it. Each Tick Twister set comes with at least one large and small tool, so choose the correct size for the tick you need to remove.
Place the prongs of the Tick Twister® hook against the skin and slide it to slot the tick between the two prongs. Twist the tool around completely 2-3 times in the same direction. Don't twist back and forth, or attempt to pull the tick.
After 2-3 twists, the tick should remove itself entirely from the skin.
2. Dispose of the tick
It's important to deal with the tick immediately. Wearing gloves, you can dispose of the tick by crushing it in a tissue and flushing it down the toilet.
Alternatively, you may want to hold on to the tick - vets or doctors may need it for identification if the bitten person or animal becomes ill. Place the tick in a plastic grip seal bag and place in the freezer to preserve it.
3. Clean the area
Once you've disposed of the tick, remove your gloves and wash your hands thoroughly. The next thing you'll need to do is disinfect the tick bite to help prevent infection.
We recommend Leucillin to clean a tick bite - this incredibly powerful antiseptic solution kills germs without any stinging or irritation. You can also use soap and water or rubbing alcohol to clean the wound.