This Explanation About Ticks is Both Informative and Terrifying

Why can’t you just flick a tick? Because it attaches to you with a mouth covered in hooks, while it fattens up on your blood, for days, but don’t worry, there is a way to pull it out. Spring is here. Unfortunately for hikers and picnickers out enjoying the warmer weather, the new season is prime time for ticks, which can transmit bacteria that cause Lyme disease. How they latch on, and stay on, is a feat of engineering that scientists have been piecing together. Once you know how a tick’s mouth works, you understand why it’s impossible to simply flick a tick. The best way to remove a tick is by “No twisting or jerking, just use a smooth motion pulling up with tweezers. Don’t use Vaseline or try to burn the tick or use a cotton swab soaked in soft soap or any of these other techniques that might take a little longer or might not work at all. What happens if the mouth of a tick breaks off in your skin? Don’t worry if the tick’s mouth parts stay behind when you pull, the mouth parts are not going to transmit disease to people. If the mouth stayed behind in your skin, it will eventually work its way out, sort of like a splinter does, she said. Clean the bite area with soap and water and apply antibiotic ointment.