Magazine article The World and I

The Ugly World of Ticks - Removing Ticks

Magazine article The World and I

The Ugly World of Ticks - Removing Ticks

Article excerpt

If you find a tick attached to your body, keep your cool and proceed methodically. Too many people simply grab the tick and pull it out, leaving its mouthparts embedded in the skin. As a result, an open wound is created, inviting microbial infections.

If the tick has just begun to dig into the skin, grasp it near the head with a pair of fine-pointed tweezers and gently sway it back and forth, until the creature releases its hold. Do not attempt to jerk it out or rotate it, and do not squeeze it with your fingers.

If the tick is deeply embedded, it must be removed by other means. Folk remedies include coating the tick in petroleum jelly, applying nail polish, or touching it with the end of a burning match or hot knife. While none of these approaches is recommended, some experts believe that if a person holds a cotton ball soaked in oil or gasoline over the tick, it will release its hold and back out of the skin after a few minutes. …

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