Mosquito & Tick Prevention Tips

Together with our tick and mosquito treatment, we think prevention is extremely important. We hope you’ll find these Prevention Tips helpful.


Managing Mosquitoes: What You Should Know

Protect Yourself:

  • Avoid outdoor activities during peak mosquito times (dusk to dawn)
  • Wear light colored long sleeve shirts, pants, and socks
  • Use insect repellent when you are going to be outdoors. (Check with your pediatrician before applying repellents to children younger than two (2) years of age).
  • Wash all clothing before wearing again.
  • Do not wear perfumes or colognes if you will be outside for an extended amount of time.
  • Use mosquito netting around infant car carriers and strollers when outdoors.

Reduce the Mosquito Population on Your Property:

  • Eliminate standing water. Mosquitoes can develop in a puddle or standing water lasting longer than four (4) days.
  • Turn over watering containers, flower pots, buckets, wheelbarrows or any object that can collect water
  • Eliminate standing water on the covers of pools and hot tubs that are not open for the season.
  • Check gutters for debris and areas where water could potentially pool
  • Change bird bath water at least twice a week or more frequently
  • Change pet watering dishes frequently
  • Remove old tires. Tires make the perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes.
  • Aerate ornamental ponds, pools, and fountains
  • Chlorinate pools and hot tubs
  • Make sure trashcans are tightly sealed and/or drill drainage holes in the bottom.
  • Check for forgotten items behind garages and sheds.
  • Make sure window screens are in good working order. Screens should be bug tight or 18 x 18 strands per inch.
  • Use shades. Mosquitoes will be attracted to the vicinity of the house and doors by the light being reflected outside of an un-shaded room.
  • Change outdoor lighting from white incandescent to yellow or amber.

 


Managing Ticks: What You Should Know

Protect Yourself:

  • Wear light colored clothing (spotting a tick is easier)
  • Pants should be tucked into socks
  • Shirts should be tucked into waistband
  • Use an approved insect repellent when outdoors
  • When outside walking stay on trails
  • Avoid areas known to have a high tick population
  • Use an insect repellent when you are going to be outdoors. (Check with your pediatrician before applying repellents to children younger than two (2) years of age).
  • Wash all clothing before wearing again.

Reduce the Tick Population on Your Property:

  • Discourage rodent and deer activity
  • Remove leaf litter
  • Keep grass mowed and well groomed
  • Remove yard clippings (mowed grass piles, brush)
  • Move firewood piles and bird feeders away from the house
  • Relocate children’s play areas away from woodland edge
  • Examine and repair the masonry of stonewalls
  • Create “Tick-Safe Zones” (wood chip/ground buffer – ticks dehydrate in this environment)

Removing A Tick:

  • How to Remove a TickRemove a tick as soon as possible from the body
  • Prompt removal of a tick is critical
  • Use tweezers
  • Get as close to the skin’s surface around the tick’s head
  • Grasp by closing the tweezers
  • Pull the tick up slowly and steadily with evenly applied pressure

  • Slow, even and steady pressure will help to keep the mouthparts intact
  • Do not twist or jerk the tick as the mouthparts can remain attached
  • Once removed, disinfect and cleanse the wound site
  • If you think you have Lyme disease contact your physician

What NOT To Do When Removing a Tick:

  • Do not remove with bare hands
  • Do not crush the tick
  • Do not put a hot match to the attached tick
  • Do not smother with petroleum jelly, gasoline, petroleum products or nail polish

How To Submit A Tick For identification:

If you would like to have a tick identified, please follow the listed directions:

Place the tick in a small, crush-proof container with rubbing alcohol, 70% isopropyl alcohol. Complete the tick submission form and mail to:

Vector-borne Disease Laboratory

Maine Medical Center Research Institute

81 Research Drive

Scarborough, ME 04074