Lyme Disease declared an epidemic by Massachusetts state health officials

lyme_disease_epidemic_in_central_MassLyme Disease in Massachusetts has reached epic proportions. So much so that the state has declared it an epidemic. Sounds scary right? Well, it is, and it isn’t. In Massachusetts we’ve had the frequency of human cases go up over the last decade which has increased the public’s awareness. Calling Lyme Disease an “epidemic” simply means, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that there is “…an increase, often sudden, in the number of cases of a disease above what is normally expected in that population in that area.”

What the Lyme Disease epidemic means for Central Mass

Deer tickAs reported by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) Lyme Disease surveillance, Worcester county and Middlesex county were among the top three Massachusetts counties for the number of Lyme Disease cases in 2013. This puts us in the center of the action for the epidemic that has hit our state. If you happen to live in Harvard, Bolton or Carlisle you are in the top 50 Massachusetts’ towns for Lyme Disease incidence between 2010 and 2014. This might sound troublesome but by bringing attention to the subject we can keep the public informed of heightened risks so that you know to increase your Lyme Disease prevention methods.

How did Lyme Disease become an epidemic?

increase_in_deer_increase_in_Lyme_disease_Harvard_MAAs reported by Enterprise News the areas that are suffering the highest rates of Lyme Disease are also the areas where there are the largest deer populations. For instance in coastal communities like Plymouth it is estimated that there are 40 deer per square mile. The state’s goal is to have that number be between six and eight deer per square mile. With each deer being able to host 300 ticks per week, that adds up to 12,000 ticks in a single square mile in any given week, just on deer.

When am I at the highest risk for Lyme Disease?

Ticks will bite all year long but July and August are the riskiest months for contracting Lyme Disease. Avoiding ticks and tick bites is the best way to prevent Lyme Disease. Follow the 6 C’s of tick protection to protect yourself and your family.

6 C’s of tick protection

  1. clear_out_debris_tick_control_Lyme_protectionClear 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 areas. Separate them with wood chips or gravel. Don’t position playground equipment, decks and patios near treed areas.
  2. Clean. Eliminate leaf litter, brush off sidewalks and mow tall grass to cut down on the places ticks can harbor.
  3. Choose. Choose plants that aren’t attractive to deer. In areas where deer are present this is very important because deer will carry ticks right into your yard. You can even find plants that are deer repellents.
  4. Check. Check hiding places periodically. Ticks like to hide along the base of fences and brick walls. Check yourself and your clothes every time you come indoors after being exposed.
  5. Care. Care for family pets. Ticks can easily hide in the fur of your pets. If your animals spend time in areas where ticks may be present, make sure you apply a topical tick medication.
  6. Call. Call the pros. Mosquito Squad of Central Mass’s tick control eliminates ticks before they can bite you, your family, your pets, and your guests. Protecting you where you spend the most outdoor time, on your own property.

With our traditional barrier spray we eliminate ticks and mosquitoes on contact. With the addition of our tick tubes we can interrupt the tick life cycle by eliminating tick nymphs before they become adults looking for a deer or human host.

Dave Macchia Mosquito Squad square 2

Dave Macchia; owner Mosquito Squad of Central MA and author of 2 blogs about tick protection and mosquito protection.

Contact us to sign up today by giving us a call at (877) 387-7823, dropping us an email at chelmsford@mosquitosquad.com or visiting our website at centralmass.mosquitosquad.com. We look forward to protecting your property this season and for many seasons to come.

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