This is tick country, be prepared
Translated press release from the Centre intégré de santé et de services sociaux de l'Outaouais:
The director of public health wishes to remind the population of the Outaouais that ticks that can transmit Lyme disease have been present in the Outaouais region for a few years now and that their numbers are increasing. Lyme disease is an infection caused by a bacteria that is transmitted to humans through the bite of an infected tick. The tick lives in vegetation, mainly in the woods and tall grass.
Monitoring data show that there are established populations of ticks in the Outaouais, in particular in the south of the region. The Pontiac, Chelsea and, as of this summer, the municipality of La Pêche are considered endemic areas for ticks. This means that the risk of getting the disease is significant. The risk is also present in several other municipalities, including Gatineau, Val-des-Monts, and Plaisance, even though these territories are not considered endemic for ticks.
Lyme disease can affect the health and quality of life of some people. Also, it is important to adopt simple and effective prevention measures:
- Between the months of May and November, during outdoor activities:
Wear a hat, closed-toe shoes and long clothes.
Wear a hat, closed-toe shoes and long clothing.
Tuck your sweater into your pants and the bottom of your sweater into your socks or your boots.
Use a DEET or icaridine based insect repellent.
When hiking, preferably walk on trails and avoid tall grass.
- To reduce the presence of ticks in your environment :
Cut tall grass and brush around your home and mow your lawn, especially near children's playgrounds.
Remove dead leaves, brush, and weeds from the lawn and at the edge of the woods and the shed.
Build trails (at least 3 metres wide) with wood chips or gravel between wooded areas and lawns, patios, and playgrounds.
- When you return from an outdoor activity, examine your equipment and your whole body. Use bath time to examine your children. If you see a tick, remove it with eyebrow tweezers and keep it in a well-closed container.
- If you are bitten by a tick in a municipality in the Pontiac sector, the municipality
of Chelsea or the Municipality of La Pêche, call Info-Santé 811 to verify your eligibility for the preventive treatment. You can also consult your pharmacist, who will be able to assess the need for to prescribe preventive treatment if you have been bitten in these areas. Bring the tick with you.
- If symptoms are observed in the months following a bite, such as redness at the site of the injection, fever, headache, fatigue and stiffness in the neck, consult a doctor.
To find out how to remove a tick or for more information: cisssoutaouais.gouv.qc.ca/sante-publique/prevention-des-maladies-infectieuses-ettransmissibles/autres-maladies-infectieuses/maladie-de-lyme.
Lyme disease: quebec.ca/sante/problemes-de-sante/az/maladie-de-lyme.
Tick removal in case of bite: quebec.ca/sante/conseils-etprevention/sante-et-environnement/retrait-de-tique-en-cas-de-piqure.
Make the most of the beautiful summer season by remembering to protect yourself!