While warmer weather and increased outdoor activities finds more Americans outside, it also puts them at greater risk for encountering ticks and contracting Lyme disease. At the start of May's National Lyme Disease Awareness Month, Turtle Moon has tips to help homeowners tick-proof their yards and outdoor spaces.
Reported cases of Lyme disease continue to rise with more than 280,000 Americans being diagnosed since 2002, with an additional 30,000 diagnoses just last year. Lyme disease is the most commonly reported vector-borne illness in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). An illness that can have lifelong debilitating effects such as arthritis, fatigue and even neurological deficits, Lyme disease is caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi and is transmitted to humans through the bite of infected blacklegged or deer ticks.
Turtle Moon Health recommends the following steps for tick-proof yards and for protecting your loved ones during outdoor activities:
Clear out. Reduce your tick exposure by clearing out areas where lawn and tree debris gathers. Ticks thrive in moist, shady areas and tend to die in sunny, dry areas. Locate compost piles away from play areas or high traffic. Separate them with wood chips or gravel. Don't position playground equipment, decks and patios near treed areas.
Clean. Eliminate leaf litter and brush by cleaning it up around the house and lawn edges, mow tall grasses and keep your lawn short.
Choose plants. Select plants and shrubs that are not attractive to deer and/or install physical barriers to keep deer out of your yard. Check with your local nursery to determine the best choices for your area.
Check hiding places. Know tick hiding places and check them frequently. Fences, brick walls and patio retaining walls are popular hiding places.
Care for family pets. Family pets can suffer from tick-borne disease and also carry infected ticks into the home. Use natural sprays, such as Turtle Moon's Mosquito and Tick Repellent.
Protect your family. If you venture into tick territory, pump-up the deterrent properties of your pants. Plant-based formulas that deter ticks are made with lemon eucalyptus oil. This is just one of the active natural ingredients in Turtle Moon's Herbal Insect Repellent.
By applying these easy precautions you can still safely enjoy the outdoors this season!
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