21 July 2017

Unseen & Unthought of Dangers

This post is not meant to scare anyone. It is to ask the reader to give some thought to little things. Especially things that you rarely "see" and do not give much thought to. What I am rambling about are ticks. Yes, ticks, which appear to be all over the place and also carry diseases.

Most of us are aware of Lyme Disease which can wreck havoc on the various systems of your body. Lyme is transmitted only from an infected Deer Tick. Deer ticks are light in color and are also very small; making them difficult to find on your clothing and on your person. To make matters worse there is now another sickness that has come into the Capital District via tick bites, Powassan Virus. There are three confirmed cases of Powassan in Saratoga County and one man has died from it.

I am somewhat familiar with ticks and also tick bites. Since October 2016 I have been bitten numerous times. Many of those times my wife had to pull the tick off of me with tweezers; other times I have not found a tick attached to me but have discovered the actual bite mark later. All of these bites have left a small raised bump that have lasted for months afterward. I have been tested for Lyme twice and results have come back negative. None of my bites have left the "bulls eye" rash that is common with a tick bite.

All of these tick bites have come from me working at a cemetery that I am in the process of restoring. Will past events and new dangers scare me aware from this project; of course not. But it is something that everyone going into woody or grassy areas need to be aware of.

This information is brought forward because roughly two hours ago my wife found a tick on a wall in our laundry room. Late yesterday afternoon I went to the cemetery to do some work. I did not do any grave stone restorations; I weed whacked particular areas in the cemetery that are growing over and obscuring many gravestones. Unfortunately when I do this type of work, weed and grass clippings are flying all over the place and that means that I am wearing the grass clippings also.

Because of my past experiences of being bitten by ticks and also finding them crawling on my skin and clothing. For months, after getting home from the cemetery, I immediately remove my clothes from myself in the garage and then put them into the washing machine. Last night I removed my clothes in the laundry room and while doing so I bumped into the wall before getting the clothes off and into the washer. One of these creepy crawlers brushed on to the wall from my shirt unknowing to me. The bride found it this morning.

I am not a fan of these parasites. But ticks do not seek us out. They are opportunists; laying in wait for something/someone to brush up against that leaf, branch, etc. so that it now ends up on you.

When going into woody and grassy areas your clothing needs to be checked for ticks afterward. Permethrin is a tick repellent which I have bought. It can be purchased at Walmart in the camping area. Typical insect repellents such as Off will not work for ticks. Permethrin is a hardcore repellent that does not get sprayed directly on skin, only clothing. Below is a photo of the brand that I have. Last night I did not use the repellent. Because of my actions (from not wearing repellent and from removing my clothes inside) a ticks breached my domain. From here on out I will be using it regularly and buying more.