Click the play button above to learn what residents should be aware of during tick season.
Audio Transcript: Feature News Story_Sheehan
By Kendra Sheehan, SYRACUSE (NCC News) —
Summertime in Syracuse means its tick season. Toward the end of July, ticks have reached adulthood, and have grown large enough to make them much easier to spot and be removed before they can burrow into the skin. However, as adult tick populations increased residents were exposed to an even greater threat.
“Adults tend to carry more of the Lyme disease bacteria,” Medical Director for the Onondaga Health Department, Dr. Quoc Nguyen said. ” The risks right now, if you are bitten by an adult tick, to get Lyme disease is higher.”
Dr. Nguyen also stated the risk for contracting Lyme disease are higher if you let the tick stay in the human skin for more than 36 hours, which is why early detection is key.
The state health department tested for ticks twice in each of the past several years. A number of sources claimed that the tick population in Onondaga County has exploded. Dr. Nguyen contradicted that claim. “I don’t think that we know very well whether the tick number are increasing or not because the sampling is in a certain areas in a county,” he stated. Additionally, Dr. Nguyen had not seen an abnormal number of Lyme disease cases in the county.
While ticks are a concern during the summer, Dr. Nguyen wanted residents to be aware that mosquito born illness are also a threat and residents should take necessary steps to protect themselves from mosquito bites in addition to tick bites.
Syracuse locals can visit the Onondaga county website, http://www.ongov.net/health/, to see if local mosquitos were found carrying any illnesses and to learn more about Lyme disease and prevention.