Halton reminds residents to protect themselves from tick bites and Lyme disease

Halton reminds residents to protect themselves from tick bites and Lyme disease

Release Date: May 28, 2018

Halton Region’s Health Department is reminding residents and travelers to protect themselves from tick bites and Lyme disease as they enjoy the outdoors in Ontario this summer. Lyme disease is a bacterial infection spread by the bite of an infected blacklegged tick and while the risk of tick-borne diseases in Halton region is low, residents should take precautions to prevent tick bites.

“Our submit-a-tick program allows residents to submit ticks found on themselves or a family member to the Halton Region Health Department,” said Dr. Hamidah Meghani, Halton Region’s Commissioner and Medical Officer of Health. “If you find a tick, remove it with fine-tip tweezers, store it in a container and submit it for identification and testing. With support from the community, this program helps us assess the risk of tick-borne diseases in Halton and keep residents safe and healthy.”

Residents engaging in outdoor activities in wooded, brushy or tall grass areas are reminded to take the following steps to protect themselves and their families from tick bites:

  • Cover up. Wear light-coloured, long-sleeved shirts and pants with tightly-woven fabric.
  • Tuck your shirt into your pants and your pant legs into your socks to keep ticks away from your bare skin.
  • Wear shoes that cover your entire foot, avoiding sandals or open shoes.
  • Stay on trails and avoid tall, grassy areas.
  • Use an approved insect repellent, such as one containing DEET or Icaridin.
  • Check yourself and your family’s clothing and body for any ticks, especially around the groin, armpits and hairline after spending time outdoors.
  • Check your pets regularly for ticks.

To learn more about how to prevent tick bites, how to participate in the submit-a-tick program, or to see higher risk areas in Ontario, please visit halton.ca/lymedisease or call 311.

The Regional Municipality of Halton serves more than 550,000 residents in the City of Burlington, the Town of Halton Hills, the Town of Milton, and the Town of Oakville. Halton Region is committed to meeting the needs of its residents through the delivery of cost-effective, quality programs and services, including water and wastewater; Regional roads and planning; paramedic services; waste management; public health; social assistance; children’s and seniors’ services; housing services; heritage programs; emergency management and economic development. For more information, call 311 or visit Halton Region’s website at halton.ca.

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Media Contact:
Elizabeth Kosturik
Acting Communications Specialist
Halton Region
905-825-6000, ext. 3260
1-866-442-5866
elizabeth.kosturik@halton.ca