Dear USET/USET SPF Family,
As summer begins, tickborne diseases are rising, especially within the USET region. Tribal Nations and community members are encouraged to take measures to prevent tick bites. The most common symptoms among tickborne diseases include fever or chills, aches and pains, and a rash.
Only certain species of ticks spread disease to people. Ticks eat blood to survive and find hosts by detecting breath, body odors, body heat, moisture, and vibrations. The feeding process varies for each species and life stage, and once completed, the tick drops off. Small amounts of saliva from the tick may enter the host during feeding, which is how tickborne diseases are spread.
Climate change is impacting timing, duration, and variability of seasons, especially causing warmer, shorter winters. As a result, ticks are thriving, which leads to the notable rise in tickborne diseases. This awareness supports the need for heightened consideration during provider screenings to identify tickborne disease cases.
Listed below are some prevention strategies and resources for reducing the spread of tickborne diseases. The USET TEC is available to assist with any questions or concerns and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tickborne Disease Prevention Strategies
- Avoid Tick Zones when possible – ticks live in grassy, wooded areas
- Use EPA registered insect repellents, containing DEET, picaridin, Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus, etc. and follow product instructions
- Check yourself and clothing when you come indoors
- Shower within two hours after being outdoors to wash off unattached ticks
- Treat clothing and gear with permethrin following product directions
- Ensure your pet is on veterinarian recommended tick prevention and check for ticks
- Keep your yard tidy and treat your yard if needed
CDC Ticks Homepage
Tickborne Diseases of the United States- A Reference for Healthcare Providers, 2022
CDC Disease Transmitted by Ticks in the United States
CDC Overview of Tickborne Diseases
CDC Tickborne Disease Continuing Education
MMWR Trends in Reported Babesiosis Cases- US 2011-2019
EPA Seasonality and Climate Change
Increased risk of tick-borne diseases with climate and environmental changes