Why is a tick dangerous?

Reports of tick-borne illnesses have doubled in the US in the past 15 years and seven new tick-borne agents have also emerged. Bacteria carried by the tick cause most tick-borne diseases. Lyme disease, the most common tick-borne infection, is caused by Borellia bergdorferi. Other diseases and their bacteria include: Erlichiosis (Ehrlichia chaffeensis), Anaplasmosis (Anaplasma phagocytophilum), and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (Rickettsia rickettsia). In contrast, Babesiosis is caused by a parasite (Babesia microti) and Powassan disease is caused by a virus (flavivirus).

Common name


Greatest time of risk

 Blacklegged tick

Lyme disease, Anaplasmosis,Babesiosis, Powassan disease

Spring, summer, fall, but even winter

American dog tick

Rocky mountain spotted fever,Tularemia

Spring and summer

Lone star tick

Ehrlichiosis, Southern tick-associated rash illness, red meat allergies

Spring through fall

Symptoms of these diseases can vary between diseases and between individuals. Symptoms may include fatigue, fever, and/or aches including headaches and muscle aches. Many of these diseases have a typical rash (for example, the bull’s eye rash of Lyme disease), but the absence of a rash does not mean you don’t have the disease. Early recognition and treatment decrease the risk of severe infection, however sometimes the disease can be difficult to diagnose and not all people remember having been bitten by a tick. Because of these difficulties, it’s most important to prevent a bite in the first place. Wear TheTickSuit.

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