Yikes! My Baby Had a Tick

Suzanne Murray

ticks and babies

babies and ticks

Photo from Lyme.org

I live in the country. It's so beautiful. We have deer, rabbits, fox, woodchucks—and ticks. Lots of ticks. And they scare the crap out of me.

The majority of residents in my town have had Lyme Disease or Ehrlichiosis, another tick-borne disease. I have been lucky because I usually spot the ticks on my clothes before they've had a chance to attach to my skin.

My husband was not so lucky—he got Ehrlichiosis last summer. I haven't been too worried about my baby because I always see her naked so I knew I'd spot a tick on her. I just didn't know how scared I'd be when it happened. I found out a few days ago.

I noticed a tick on her neck while she was eating dinner and it was already attached. I panicked and started shaking like jelly. I guess I'm not going to be ont of those moms that's good in an emergency. I did manage to get the tick out with some tweezers and my baby was a trooper through it all—it hardly bothered her a bit.

How do you protect a baby against ticks?

1. Dress him in long pants and long-sleeved shirts. It will be easier to spot ticks if your baby is wearing light-colored clothing.

2. If your baby is over 2 months old and you feel comfortable with it, you can use a tick repellent containing DEET or picaridin. (This is not something I would personally ever use.) Spray the repellant on your baby's clothes rather than his skin, and always check labels to make sure a product is okay for use on a baby of a certain age.

3. If your baby does get a tick, don't panic. Trust me, it's pretty easy to remove. And call your pediatrician just to be on the safe side. My doctor told me to be on the lookout for a rash and fever my baby. If none appeared, he said I should still have the baby come in for a blood test in six weeks since lyme disease is so prevalent in our town.

Has your baby ever had a tick?



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