What would you say if I told you thousands of sharp-toothed creatures with an unquenchable appetite for your blood are making a mass exodus from wooded forests straight to your home? You might tell me to put down the Twilight books or stop watching HBO's True Blood. You might also suggest that I promptly take the tin foil off of my head. Or... you might recognize that I haven't completely lost my mind and that my warning does, in fact, have some teeth behind it.
No, we're not talking about vampires, we're talking about deer ticks and bed bugs.
It's mid-September now, which means most kids have been home from summer camp for at least a few weeks. And now that the weather is quickly starting to cool down and everyone is back to school, family camping trips are all but over as well. Unfortunately, the further we get away from these activities, the more likely we are to forget about exposure to deer ticks and the proliferation of bed bugs.
What You Need to Know About Deer Ticks
Most Midwesterners are familiar with the idea of ticks, but there are often misconceptions about the appropriate way to remove a tick and the potential health dangers associated with deer ticks. For anyone that spends any amount of time outdoors during the summer or fall, it's worth taking a look at our safety article which includes just about everything you need to know about Preventing Tick Bites and Lyme's Disease.
You can also find excellent information on deer ticks and wood ticks at these great sites:
What You Need to Know About Bed Bugs
After reading through the information of ticks linked above you'll learn that they can transmit Lyme's Disease, which can often times cause serious health problems. The good news about bed bugs is they don't cause any health complications other than minor bumps and rashes; unfortunately, bed bug infestations are often much more difficult to combat. Major bed bug infestations are becoming more and more common throughout the entire country. Summer camps, dormitories, and any other place where a large group of people spend time in close quarters, are highly susceptible to outbreaks.
Take a look at our resources with information on Bed Bug Prevention, Identification, and Eradication. For other good sources check out: