Ticks season has begun early panic unnecessary
No need to panic against ticks: low risk of transmission
This year, the tick season started earlier than in previous years. The ticks belonging to the arachnids are responsible for a number of serious infectious diseases. No other animal transmits as many diseases as, for example, early-onset meningitis (TBE) or Lyme borreliosis. Nevertheless, one reason for panic does not exist: He who protects himself well, significantly reduces the risk of a tick bite.
Ticks cause great anxiety among many Germans: they let themselves fall down from trees, in order to transmit always bad illnesses, so the common opinion. However, a few myths are wrong: ticks are more likely to be in the undergrowth and can be dragged along as they pass by. Very few actually carry a pathogen in themselves and transmit the Lyme disease. Nevertheless, some precautions are useful to protect against infections.
In case of doubt, have the ticks removed by the doctor
Ronald (8) from Winsen played outdoors all day. The sun was shining and the kids were wildly raging. "During the evening showers, I noticed the ticks on my son's skin. The animal had gotten stuck but not yet soaked, "says Ronald's mother. "We were very afraid that the tick bite causes meningitis or Lyme disease". Since the parents knew that pulling out a lot can be done wrong, they preferred to go to the nearest ambulance. There, the ticks were removed with special pliers. "The on-duty pediatrician could calm us down," says Mrs. Neumann. Although there is a risk of a transmission disease, only very few ticks actually infect humans. "The risk is 1: 100," says Klaus Ernst, physician from Hannover. Because according to the latest research, only every one hundredth tick transmits a Lyme disease. The season has started for the tiny little bloodsucker early this year. "I already had some patients with tick bites in my practice," says the intern. Kurt Reising, spokesman for the medical district association.
Only one out of 100 tick bites transmits Lyme disease
Although it is possible that ticks transmit a disease, explains the Foundation for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWIG) in Cologne, but most tick bites are harmless except for the small wound site. Shortly after the infestation develops around the stitch point around a red skin, which begins to itch. This is a body warning system to indicate that there is a foreign body in the skin. The tick should be removed immediately expertly. The best way to do this is to use special tweezers, which can also be bought in pharmacies. Those who are unsure should go to the family doctor or visit the nearest clinic at the weekend. Only when a few days or weeks later a red skin patch develops around the affected skin, can this symptom be indicative of Lyme disease. In this case, a doctor should be consulted immediately, who will then initiate further investigations and therapies.
According to some reports, only one out of 100 people suffer from the dangerous Lyme disease. Seven of the sixteen federal states in Germany have introduced a reporting obligation for the disease. The health authorities of the notifiable countries report about 8000 patients in 2011. The tick-borne encephalitis (TBE) occurs even less frequently. All over Germany, just 400 patients were reported last year. Most of those affected came from Baden-Württemberg and Bavaria, which are also considered "strongholds" for tick bites. In numerous regions of Germany, the FSME "does not appear at all", as the foundation reports.
The Lyme disease is triggered by the bacterial strain "Borrelia burgdorferi". The pathogens can basically infect all organs in the human body. Most nerve damage or joint discomfort caused by those affected. "The transmission is usually triggered by the Holzbock, very rarely but also by mosquitoes or horse brakes," explain experts. Doctors report that, in the worst case, paralysis and residual nerve disease can be left behind. Many patients also report heart problems such as palpitations and chest pain, which are usually caused by vascular inflammation.
Quick test does not necessarily have to be
Some doctors and veterinarians offer so-called rapid tests. Who brings the tick after a bite in the doctor's office, can learn in just over fifteen minutes, if the animal is a carrier of Lyme disease. So can be quickly learned, whether human or pet was infected, praise the manufacturers. Dr. Kurt Reising, spokesman for the Augsburg district association, does not think much of such quick tests. It would be better to observe the puncture site after the bite for several weeks. If a red, circular circle forms around the spot, the person should go to the doctor. As a rule, this will then administer antibiotic drugs.
Proper clothing is the best protection against ticks
So that it does not come to the tick bite, the right clothes should be worn. In order to provide as little as possible skin contact with the tick, especially children outdoors should wear long sleeves and pant legs with closed collars. In addition, sturdy shoes, which is also closed.
Non-medical practitioner Susanne Schlagfeld also advises lotions that put off ticks. These mostly essential oils include anise, lavender, tea tree, rosemary or citronella. These scents irritate the insects and thus cause an expulsion. "However, the oils should be reapplied once an hour," advises the non-medical practitioner. Very hard-boiled people can also eat a clove of garlic before a walk in the forest. The body protection by adequate clothing must not be missing, so Schlagfeld.
Robert Koch Institute recommends vaccination against FSME
The Robert Koch Institute (RKI) advises immunization by vaccination. However, this only works before the early summer meningitis. Ideally, the vaccine should be taken in the winter to build a protective effect for the tick-time. This requires two injections every 4 to 8 weeks. The vaccine protection is not suitable for Lyme disease, as it is caused by bacteria. (Sb)
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