Correct tick removal
How a tick is removed is extremely important. Incorrect removal can result in:
•The tick’s mouth parts being left behind in the skin.
•Compression of the tick’s body.
•Puncture of the tick’s body.
•Injury and irritation to the tick.
Why is this a problem?
•Leaving behind the tick’s mouth parts may result in a localised infection, which in severe cases can lead to abscesses and even septicaemia.
•Compressing the tick’s body may cause fluids (its saliva and gut contents) to be squeezed back into the bloodstream of its host (the person or animal it’s attached to). These fluids may contain disease-causing organisms.
•Puncturing the body of the tick may spill infective fluids (full of disease-causing organisms) on to the host, or on to the person removing the tick.
•Causing injury or irritation to the tick may result in it regurgitating (vomiting) infective fluids into the host, potentially causing a serious infection.
Use the links to the right to find out the correct technique for tick removal with tweezers and a tick-removal tool, and check out our MYTH BUSTING section below.