Various “home remedies” for tick removal have not been proven effective and may actually increase chances of infection by causing the tick to regurgitate.

Under no circumstance should a flame, ointment, flammable liquid (gasoline, oil, lighter fluid, acetone, nail polish, etc.) or caustic material be used in removal attempts.

A person who is bitten by a tick should go to a physician, and have it carefully removed with fine-pointed tweezers. Most tweezers are too blunt on the tips, and will cause an attached tick to regurgitate body fluids.

Place fine-pointed tweezers snugly against skin, with a firm grip of the tick’s head, gently pull the tick straight out with steady pressure. Do not twist or squeeze the tick. It is important to ensure removal of the tick’s mouthpiece from the skin to reduce the chance of infection. Apply an antiseptic & wash your hands.

Make Note of: date, location on the body, outdoor activity; take a picture, especially if rash is present or appears.

Place the tick in a vial with a piece of moist Kleenex or paper towel.

The Dr. can send the tick to be identified and tested for Borrelia burgdorferi and other tick-borne pathogens; alternatively you can bring it into the Public Health Dept. yourself to be sent off.

Mail it to: Central Laboratory, 81 Resources Rd., Etobicoke, ON M9P 3T1