How can I prevent a tick-borne illness?

Mechanical protection
This is basic. Cover yourself. Wear long pants, tuck your pants into socks, wear light colored clothes. Or – here’s where we come in – wear TheTickSuit.  Wear the suit over your clothes. The suit reduces the chance of a tick attaching to you. Take the suit off outside, you don’t want to bring ticks into your home. Put the suit in its bag and dry the suit in a dryer at high heat for at least 15 minutes to destroy any ticks you may not have seen. If the suit needs washing, wash in hot water and dry at high heat for  ~1 hour. Now it’s ready to wear again! Ticks die if dried (dessicated). If clothes are wet, it takes longer for the ticks to dry out.

Chemical protection
Chemical agents can be applied to clothes (permethrin) or repellants. Clothes sprayed with permethrin can withstand several washes (please check with the manufacturer). If clothing is coated appropriately with permethrin, the tick will die when it contacts the chemical. Repellants include those with ≥ 20% DEET, picaridin, IR3535 or some essential oils (https://www.epa.gov/insect-repellents/find-repellent-right-you). Oils applied to the skin must be reapplied regularly and you need to check for toxicity.

Avoidance
Avoid areas that ticks like, such as high grasses, gardens, bushes, woods. Hmmm, that’s a bit difficult if you want to garden, do yard work, hike, or just take a walk in the woods.