Handling a Tick Bite

a tick being held with a pair of tweezers

Not all ticks carry Lyme disease. But even the kinds that don’t can pass along other nasty infections.

What to Do When a Tick Bites

If you find a tick attached to you, a family member, or a pet, quick and complete removal is key.

  1. Grab The Tick

    Using fine-point tweezers or a special tick-removing tool, grasp the tick as close to your skin’s surface as you can.

  2. Pull Carefully

    Pull straight out with steady and even pressure. Avoid squeezing or breaking the tick.

  3. Store The Tick

    You may wish save the tick in case you decide to have it tested by a lab, health department, or veterinarian for diseases.

    Place it in a small plastic bag or vial with a moist cotton ball to prevent the tick from drying out.

  4. Clean Up

    Wash hands thoroughly. Disinfect the tweezers and the site of the bite.

  5. Monitor The Bite

    See your healthcare practitioner if:

    • you exhibit a red rash at the site of the tick bite
    • you develop any flu-like symptoms
    • you feel joint pains within the first few weeks

    These may signal Lyme disease.

Click to See Our Sources

“Co-Infection Introduction”; “Lyme Disease Introduction”; “Personal Prevention,” www.lymedisease.org

“Lyme Disease,” American Lyme Disease Foundation, www.aldf.com

“Mosquito-Borne Diseases,” www.mosquito.org

“Top Ten Facts You Need to Know About Ticks,” www.tickencounter.org


The Taste for Life Staff

The Taste for Life staff come from a wide variety of backgrounds and specialties. We believe learning is a life-long process, and love to share the knowledge we gain.