Every year as summer rolls around, we hear all of the same warnings: be sure to wear sunscreen, never leave the kids unattended near water, cover up as much as possible. But one warning we tend to overlook is one that continues to be one of the most pressing: Be aware of ticks.
We’ve already seen it in children everywhere — experiencing everything from temporary paralysis to extreme rashes and even death. Of course, one of the biggest concerns with ticks in the U.S. is an increase in Lyme disease — a tick-borne illness that often causes a rash, flu-like symptoms, joint pain and weakness in the limbs.
If you’re anything like me, you hear these warnings and think, “OK, I’ll be sure to look for little bugs crawling on me when I come in from outside.” Because surely you’ll know if a creepy crawly tick is making a playground out of your body.
But as one mother wants everyone to know spotting ticks just isn’t that simple.
Beka Setzer wrote in a harrowing Facebook post about how her daughter Emmalee had been playing outside in the sprinkler — soaking up the summer day.
“After coming inside and laying down for a nap, I just happened to notice tiny (and I mean TINY) little black dots all over her legs, abdomen, arms and armpit area. Thinking they may have just been seeds, I tried to wipe them or scrape one off and it was a TICK!”
Beka suspects her daughter must have been rolling around in the grass near a nest of tick larvae because she was COVERED in them.
In order to show others just how easy it is to overlook these little stinkers, Beka posted videos with her warning. One shows a tick crawling in Emmalee’s skin, and the other shows one of the ticks under her fingernail as she pulled them off of her daughter.
Posted by Love What Matters on Thursday, July 6, 2017
Y’all, you CAN HARDLY SEE THEM! I’ve seen the warnings, and I’ve written a handful of them this summer alone. But never have I ever thought that it would be this impossible to spot a tick!
“I spent nearly an hour and a half picking over 150 minuscule baby ticks off of her, gave her a long dawn dish soap bath with repeated washing, washed all bedding, clothing and toys she came into contact with afterwards and administered Benadryl.”
Beka brought Emmalee to the doctor the next morning after she woke up with a low-grade fever, little red spots on her, and a marble sized-swollen lymph node.
They put her on an aggressive antibiotic routine complete with antihistamines.
“I want to make every parent aware of what these look like so you can be on the lookout. They’re not as easy to see as the ticks you’re likely looking for on yourself or children.”
The concerned mother wants others to know what they’re looking for when it comes to checking their family for ticks. Like myself, she never expected them to be so tiny.
You can’t possibly notice these at first glance with the naked eye. There’s no telling what may have happened had Emmalee taken the nap.
Beka had some of the ticks analyzed for Lyme disease, and thankfully, they all tested negative.
Share this warning with other parents, and make sure you’re educated on what seed ticks look like. It could wind up saving you or your child’s life.
For more information on different types of ticks, the dangers of ticks, or what various tick bites look like, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website.