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Are you planning to travel?

Being aware of ticks and tick-borne illnesses can help prevent serious health problems at home and away.

A couple celebrate their travel plans by holding up a map for a photo.

Ticks can be found around the globe and have different habits, habitats and carry different pathogens depending on where you’re headed. Here are a few tips for travelers:

  1. Pack light coloured clothes, a hat and insect repellent to prevent tick and insect bites while you travel.
  2. Remember to bring a tick removal kit or pointy tweezers and a sealable bag or container when you travel. If you find a tick, save it for identification and testing.
  3. Whether you’re at home or away, check your skin and hair at least once daily. Many people don’t see or feel a tick bite and some ticks can transmit pathogens in a matter of minutes so time is of the essence!
  4. Keep tick-borne illness on the radar if you become ill during or after travel. Some risk areas can be found by searching “ticks” and your region of travel.
  5. There are many different species of ticks worldwide. Ticks can be found in rural areas, in cities and when there are animals around, they can even be found indoors. 
  6. There are also many different types of tick-borne illnesses worldwide. Not only do they each come with their own set of symptoms, they can also look very different from person to person. 
  7. Fever, headaches, muscle pain, fatigue and rashes are symptoms common to many tick-borne illnesses. If you become ill, discuss the possibility of tick-borne illness with your healthcare provider, and let them know where you have traveled to and when. 
  8. In the case of infections like Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, early treatment can be life saving. Your doctor may want to consult with local physicians or health units regarding tick-borne illnesses in their region.
  9. Take matters into your own hands by learning how to prevent tick encounters before you travel and by researching ticks and tick-borne illnesses specific to your destination. 
  10. A little planning goes a long way when it comes to having a safe and happy holiday!

Stay safe in the outdoors

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