Tick Awareness

Taking some simple precautions can help keep ticks off your body during your next outdoor adventure!

  • Use an insect repellent with a minimum of 20% DEET, picaridin or IR3535. Apply as directed.
  • Wear light-colored clothing and consider tucking your pants into your socks.
  • Walk in the center of trails to avoid overhanging brush and grass.
  • Examine your clothes and skin frequently for ticks (be sure to check your dogs too).
  • Shower soon after you return indoors.
  • Check your pets for ticks regularly.

If you should find a tick attached to your body, carefully remove it immediately. 

  • Use tweezers to grasp the tick near its mouth parts (as close to your skin as possible).
  • Pull firmly and straight out to remove the tick.
  • Dispose of the live tick by submerging it in alcohol, placing it in a sealed bag, or flushing it down a toilet. 
  • Wash your hands and the site of the bite.
  • Apply antiseptic to the bite.

Common symptoms of tick-borne diseases

While symptoms and severity can vary depending on the disease, there are some common symptoms among all tick-borne diseases. Consult your medical provider if you experience one of the following symptoms after being in a potentially tick-infested area:

  • Sudden high fever
  • Rash
  • Sudden flu-like symptoms

For more information on ticks in Missouri, please visit the opens in a new window Department of Health and Senior Services website or contact the  opens in a new windowColumbia/Boone County Health Department.