Itchy tick bite site: Diseases, Symptoms, Fever, Allergic Reactions, & Flu-Like Symptoms
Diseases, Symptoms, Fever, Allergic Reactions, & Flu-Like Symptoms
A lot of bites from little critters looking for their next meal are no big deal. You get a small red bump, maybe it’s itchy, and you move on. But if you have a tick, you want to know about it.
Ticks carry a lot of different diseases, some of them serious. Usually, early treatment is your key to a full and fast recovery. That means you need to know what to look for if a tick bites you.
How to Identify Tick Bites
Ticks aren’t like bugs that bite you and then fly away or scoot off. When one gets on your body, it sets up camp. It finds a place to eat, then burrows its head into your skin and starts feeding. And it’ll stay there for several days.
Most likely, you won’t feel anything because the bite doesn’t hurt, and it isn’t usually itchy. Because ticks are often very small, you might not see it either. At first, it might just look like a fleck of dirt. As it feeds though, it swells up and can be easier to find.
You might get a small red bump where the tick bites you. Some people’s bodies react to ticks with 1 to 2 inches of redness around the bite. That red area won’t get any bigger, unless it’s really a rash, which is a sign of disease.
Ticks typically bite people in warm, moist, or hairy areas, like the:
- Skin behind the ear
- Skin between your fingers and toes
Once a tick finds a place to feed, it will stay there anywhere from a few days to 2 weeks. Ticks bite once and use that site to feed on your blood until they’re full. A tick will fall off on its own once it’s full. You won’t get multiple bites from a tick. Most tick bites are painless and cause only a minor reaction. Only sometimes do they transmit disease.
Tick Bite Symptoms
Tick bites often cause a reaction on your skin, even when they’re not infected or disease-causing. Typical symptoms of a tick bite may include:
- A small hard bump or sore
Unlike other bites, tick bites don’t usually have fluid or pus in them, unless they’re infected.
Most diseases from ticks also give you flu-like symptoms, such as:
With Lyme disease, you may also have joint pain.
Only some diseases from ticks give you a rash. What it looks like depends on which kind you have.
Lyme disease: Most people with Lyme disease get a rash, but not all of them. It shows up within 3-30 days after you were bitten, but it usually takes just over a week.
You’ll see a round or oval area of redness around the bite. At first, it may look just like a reaction to the bite, but the rash gets bigger over days or even weeks. Typically, it reaches about 6 inches wide. It might feel warm, but it’s not usually painful or itchy.
Most people think of the bull’s-eye rash when they hear about Lyme disease. That happens in less than half the cases, and it comes after the rash has been around for a while.
Rocky Mountain spotted fever: Most people with RMSF get a rash 2-5 days after they first get symptoms. It won’t look the same on everyone, but it usually starts as small, flat, pink spots on your wrists and ankles.
It spreads from there to the rest of your body. In about half the cases, the spots turn red or purple after about a week.
Southern tick-associated rash illness: With STARI, you get a rash just like Lyme disease: a red bull’s-eye with the bite in the center.
Tularemia: There are different types of tularemia, but with the most common one, you get a painful open sore where the tick bit you.
Ehrlichiosis: Children get the rash more often than adults. The rash can vary from small, flat, red, or purple spots to red areas of skin covered with small bumps.
How to Treat a Tick Bite
If you find a tick still on your skin, follow these steps:
- Remove it. Don’t touch the tick with your bare hands. Gently pull it straight out with tweezers. Don’t twist or squeeze it. Make sure you’ve removed the whole tick.
- Save it in a sealed container. It helps to have a doctor look at or test your tick so you know if it was carrying diseases.
- Wash your hands and the site of the bite. Once the tick is gone, use soap and water to make sure you’ve cleaned off any of the tick’s saliva.
It’s important to start treatment for diseases from ticks as soon as possible. If your tick bite is infected or you’ve gotten a disease from it, your doctor may prescribe antibiotics to help get rid of the infection or disease.
When Should I Call My Doctor?
Call or see your doctor if you:
- Can’t get the tick totally out
- Get a rash. (Even if the rash goes away, that doesn’t mean the disease is gone.)
- Have any flu-like symptoms, with or without a rash
- See red streaks, or yellow fluid oozing from the bite, meaning the bite is infected
Some people have more serious reactions to the bite itself. Go to the emergency room if you have:
- Anaphylaxis. This is a life-threatening reaction that needs medical care right away.
- Tick paralysis. If you have this, you will be unable to move. Paralysis usually goes away within 24 hours of removing the tick.
Call 911 or go to the emergency room if you have any of these symptoms:
- You can’t move your arms, legs, or part of your face.
- It’s hard to breathe.
- Your heart feels like it’s fluttering, skipping beats, or beating too hard or too fast.
- You have a severe headache.
- You feel weakness in your arms or legs.
How to Prevent Tick Bites
You can lower your chance of tick bites by preparing yourself before you go outside and knowing what to look for once you’re back inside. Use these tick tips to protect yourself:
- Know where ticks lurk. You’re most likely to come into contact with ticks in long grassy, brush, or in wooded areas. You can even get them from brushing up against an animal that has one. Be on the lookout when you camp, garden, hunt, or spend time outdoors.
- Treat clothes with permethrin. Products with 0.5% permethrin help repel ticks. You put it on your clothes, shoes, and gear, not skin.
- Treat skin with insect repellents. If you know you’ll be in a tick-friendly area, use products with DEET, picaridin, IR3535, oil of lemon eucalyptus (OLE), para-menthane-diol (PMD), or 2-undecanone on your skin to help make sure ticks and other bugs buzz off.
- Hike smart. When you’re outdoors, try to avoid places where you’ll rub against trees, plants, or grass. Walk in the center of trails.
- Do tick checks. Spend time looking for ticks on your body, pets, clothing, and gear after you come in from time outdoors. Use a mirror for hard-to-see areas of your body, and don’t forget to check your scalp.
- Wash off. Taking a shower within 2 hours of being outdoors can reduce your chance of getting a tick-borne disease. Running water and scrubbing with soap can help remove ticks from your body. Wash laundry on hot to rid your clothes of any hidden ticks.
Tick Bite Pictures & Symptoms
This article was medically reviewed by Shonda Hawkins, M.S.N., a nurse practitioner and member of the Prevention Medical Review Board.
You just spent the day outside hiking, grilling, or tending to your yard—but now you have a nasty, red, scratchy, bumpy bite on your arm. Could it be a tick bite?
Unfortunately, figuring out the source of your bug bite can be tricky, especially because mosquitoes, spiders, and fleas also come out to play when warmer weather hits (not to mention, bed bugs and other critters that may wind up in your home).
“Tick and other insect bites can look similar,” says Griffin Dill, Ph.D., coordinator of the Cooperative Extension: Tick Lab at The University of Maine. “Without finding a tick attached and feeding, it’s hard to differentiate one bite site from another,” he says.
But treating and preventing these bites can help keep nasty tick-borne illnesses like Lyme disease out of your future—so knowing how to identify a bite is crucial. Here, the signs and symptoms to watch out for, plus tick bite pictures to refer to when you suspect the blood-sucking critter has made its way onto your skin.
What does a tick bite look like, exactly?
An attached tick that has not grown bigger from feeding yet.
An attached female dog tick that has grown bigger from feeding.
The signs of a tick bite actually vary from person to person, since everyone’s immune system reacts differently to them, explains Thomas Mather, Ph.D., director of the University of Rhode Island’s Center for Vector-Borne Disease and Tick Encounter Resource Center. While someone may have a small, red bump after the tick detaches, others may develop an area of redness and itchiness.
Your best bet is to find the tick while it’s still on your skin. “Ticks are designed to linger when they attach and bite,” says Mather. The mouth of a tick contains a bunch of backward-pointing barbs that they use to stay put, meaning they are “designed to lock and load,” as Mather puts it. The biters also secrete a cement-like substance around their mouths to keep them stuck even if they were to be, say, absentmindedly scratched at.
Depending on where the tick is in its lifecycle—larva (baby, six legs), nymph (eight legs), or adult stage (full-sized critter)—it can stick around anywhere from three to six days, Mather says. The longer they’re feeding, the bigger they get—and the greater the risk of transmitting disease.
A tick bite right after a tick was pulled from the skin, with some still stuck insde. CREDIT: KitAy / Flickr
Flickr Creative Commons / KitAy
If you’ve been previously bitten, there’s a greater chance you will have an allergic reaction to the tick saliva within 20 to 40 hours of the bite, says Mather. After a bite, the area may appear as a small red spot that doesn’t expand to be larger than a dime. However, more severe reactions can occur, and rashes can develop. Because tick bite signs vary wildly and can mimic the appearance of other insects, even tick experts can’t always tell one red mark from another.
An infected tick bite on a man’s stomach.
Where do ticks bite?
You can find a tick bite anywhere. However, “although they can and do attach to any part of the body, there are certain body parts they more commonly move toward, like the hairline, or in tucked-away places, like the armpits, groin, and behind knees,” says Dill. That’s because ticks have heat sensors that allow them to seek out warmer, moist places. Recently, doctors even discovered a tick attached to a 9-year-old boy’s eardrum.
Are tick bites itchy? Do they hurt?
Generally, tick bites do not hurt. You might feel a bite—but you may have no idea when it happens either. Both are possible. “Early in the process of biting, ticks inject a pain mediator via their saliva,” says Mather. Because it’s more likely that subsequent bites will elicit a reaction, the first bite can often go unnoticed, he says. However, many people do find them itchy. If you continue to itch at a certain spot on your body, Mather encourages you to take a look to see what you’re scratching at, since it’s one common way people find ticks.
Does a tick bite always cause a rash?
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You’ve probably heard of the classic “bullseye” rash, which is one of the most distinct symptoms of Lyme disease. This circular rash is dark in the center and expands outward, like a bullseye, appearing about a week after the bite on any part of the body. It doesn’t always look like that, though.
You may have a crusty spot with a splotch of redness around it that gets bigger, bluish rashes, or a red, oval plaque, per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Catch is, this rash only appears 70 to 80% of the time, says the CDC. Remember that not all ticks carry the bacteria that causes Lyme disease; there are other types of rashes associated with other tick-borne illnesses. For instance, Rocky Mountain spotted fever can cause a red, speckled rash that appears first on wrists and ankles.
Child’s right hand and wrist displaying the characteristic spotted rash of Rocky Mountain spotted fever.
Smith Collection/GadoGetty Images
It’s also important to keep in mind that rashes can be tough to distinguish from one another. The CDC has a whole page on rashes that resemble the bullseye associated with Lyme, but aren’t. These include large, itchy rashes, the ringworm fungus, and hives. If you’re concerned about any rash or are worried you may have been bitten by a tick (or know you have), call your doctor. In certain circumstances, they can prescribe a course of preventative antibiotics if Lyme disease is suspected or you live in a state with a high risk of Lyme.
How to remove a tick and treat a tick bite
First, don’t panic. If you find one attached to your skin, remove the tick as quickly as possible using a set of fine-tipped tweezers. Grab the tick as closely to the surface of your skin as possible, and pull upward with steady, even pressure. If mouth-parts are left in the skin, try your best to remove them, but if not just let your skin heal normally, says the CDC. Then, make sure to clean the bite area with soap and water or alcohol.
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Dispose of the tick in a sealed bag or container, wrapped up tightly in tape, or by flushing it down the toilet, says the CDC. Never crush it with your fingers, and of course, in the weeks to follow you should keep an eye out for any lingering symptoms, like a rash. See your doctor if you experience flu-like symptoms, such as achy muscles, fever, swollen lymph nodes, or other unusual reactions that don’t feel normal
Ticks can be tiny (sometimes no bigger than a poppy seed!) and they can be easily missed, so it’s important to do thorough body check after you’ve spent time outdoors. Be sure to look carefully under your arms, around your ears, inside your belly button, behind your knees, between your legs, and in your hair. “Checking yourself, kids, and pets can go a long way in minimizing contact with these critters,” says Dill.
And as always, stock up on the best tick repellents before your next outdoor adventure.
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Tick Bite, Antibiotic Treatment
Ticks are small arachnids that feed on the blood of rodents, rabbits, birds, deer, dogs and humans. The bite may cause a small reaction like that of a spider, with a small amount of limited redness, itching and slight swelling. Sometimes there is no local reaction.
Most tick bites are harmless. But some ticks carry diseases, such as Lyme disease or Rocky Mountain spotted fever. These can be passed to people at the time of the bite. Lyme disease is of greatest concern. Right now you have no symptoms of Lyme disease or other serious reaction to the bite. It’s important to watch for the warning signs, which could appear weeks to months after the tick bite.
These guidelines can help you care for your bite at home:
If itching is a problem, don’t wear tight clothing or anything that heats up your skin. This includes hot showers or baths and direct sunlight. This often makes the itching worse.
An ice pack will reduce local areas of redness and itching. Make your own ice pack by putting ice cubes in a zip-top plastic bag and wrapping it in a thin towel. Over-the-counter creams containing benzocaine may help with itching.
You can use an antihistamine with diphenhydramine if your healthcare provider didn’t give you another antihistamine. This medicine may be used to reduce itching if large areas of the skin are involved. It’s available at drugstores and grocery stores. Use caution because this medicine may cause drowsiness. If symptoms continue, talk with your healthcare provider or pharmacist about other over-the counter or prescription medicines that may be helpful.
Your healthcare provider may prescribe antibiotics to reduce your risk of getting Lyme disease. It’s very important that you take them exactly as directed until they are completely finished.
Follow up with your healthcare provider, or as advised.
Call 911 if any of these occur:
Irregular or rapid heartbeat
Numbness, tingling, or weakness in the arms or legs
When to seek medical advice
Call your healthcare provider right away if any of these occur:
Signs of local infection. Watch for these during the next few days:
Increasing redness around the bite site
Increased pain or swelling
Fever over 100.4°F (38°C), or as directed by your healthcare provider
Fluid draining from the bite area
Signs of tick-related disease. Watch for these over the next few weeks to months:
Circular, red, ring-like rash appears at the bite area within 1 to 3 weeks
Tiredness, fever or chills, nausea or vomiting
Neck pain or stiffness, headache, or confusion
Muscle or bone aches
Joint pain or swelling, especially in the knee
Weakness on one side of the face
A spotted rash that starts on or includes the palms of the hands and soles of the feet
How to Know When You’ve Been Bitten by a Tick
Detecting tick bites can be tricky. Unlike the bites of mosquitoes and other insects, tick bites do not tend to cause itching or immediate skin irritation.
“Every blood-feeding arthropod and insect introduces saliva into the wound,” explains Jonathan Day, PhD, a professor of medical entomology at the University of Florida. In the case of mosquitoes and some other biting insects, this saliva contains proteins that prevent the bite wound from clotting, which would slow the outflow of blood and therefore disrupt feeding, Dr. Day explains.
Apart from preventing your blood from clotting, these proteins also trigger a reaction from your immune system. This reaction produces redness, swelling, itching, and all the other unpleasant skin irritations that come with bug bites, Day explains.
RELATED: How to Identify 11 Common Bug Bites
But tick bites are different. “Ticks suppress that reaction with immunosuppressants in their saliva,” Ostfeld explains.
Since you can’t feel a tick’s bite, you can detect it in one of two ways:
- By spotting or feeling a tick on your skin
- By identifying a bite once the tick has dropped off
If the Tick Is Still Attached …
Finding a tick on your skin can be quite difficult, Ostfeld says — especially during the spring and early-summer months when ticks are in their nymph stage, and so are roughly the size of a poppy seed. You have to closely examine your skin — and have a loved one scan the places you can’t see — in order to spot them. While adult ticks are a little larger, they’re still difficult to identify.
Running your hands over those parts of your body ticks tend to bite is another way to find them before they’ve dropped off. (They’ll feel like small, unfamiliar, hard nodules on your skin.)
If the Tick Has Dropped Off …
While tick bites don’t immediately itch like other bug bites, they can still cause a red welt or itchy lesion to rise on the skin after the tick has dropped away, Ostfeld says.
The size and quality of this lesion can vary a lot from person to person, he says, and so it may be impossible to differentiate a tick bite from a mosquito bite. Especially if the tick that bit you was not carrying Lyme disease or some other infection, the bite is likely to resemble a mosquito bite and quickly fade away.
RELATED: How to Identify These 11 Common Skin Rashes
But if you find a tick on your skin or notice an itchy lesion that doesn’t go away within a few days, that could indicate Lyme disease or some other kind of tick-borne infection. (3) The same is true of a large, bull’s-eye-shaped skin lesion — something that looks like a red welt surrounded by one or more outer rings of inflamed red skin. (3) This bull’s-eye rash is a hallmark of Lyme disease.
How to Identify Tick Bites
A tick bite is never something to brush off, forget about, and deal with later. Many ticks carry microbes that can cause a variety of diseases.
If diseases caused by tick bites are left untreated, they can lead to serious health problems that could potentially affect your muscles, joints, brain, heart, vision, and nervous system. Many tick-borne illnesses can have serious consequences that alter your lifestyle and activities by limiting your mobility, cognition, and overall quality of life. Knowing how to identify a tick bite and recognizing the general symptoms of tick-borne diseases can alert you to possible health risks sooner, so you can consult with your healthcare provider about appropriate next steps as soon as possible.
What a tick looks like
The first step in identifying tick bites is to know what ticks look like. Ticks will look different at each stage of their life cycle. Belonging to the arachnid class (scorpions, spiders, mites), ticks begin their life as an egg then hatch as a larva, which grows into a nymph and finally an adult tick. Dozens of tick species exist, but all are similar in appearance.
Ticks generally have four stages of life: egg, larvae, nymph and adult. Ticks advance through each of these stages by molting, a process during which they shed their outer skin.
Learn more >>
What a tick bite looks like
Tick bites are painless, so it’s likely you won’t immediately know that you’ve been bitten. The tick injects an anesthetic into the skin at its point of entry, which helps it avoid detection so it can continue feeding. Many patients with the tick-borne Lyme disease don’t recall having a bug bite of any kind.
So how do you know if you have a tick bite? The following pictures of tick bites may help. Take a moment to review each one closely and read through the accompanying descriptions to better spot and identify potential tick bites on you or your loved ones.
In this photo, the tick is still attached, having burrowed its head into the skin to feed. The redness around the tick indicates inflammation in the skin.
In this photo, the tick is still attached to the skin and appears larger because it has been feeding longer. This is an example of an engorged tick, so called because it has been gorging on blood.
Remove A Tick And Get It Tested By IGeneX! – Learn More.
Other bug bites can sometimes resemble tick bites, and therefore, it isn’t always easy to know whether you or a loved one have been bitten by a tick. The following guidelines can help, but it is always best to consult with your healthcare provider if you suspect a tick bite.
- Tick bites are not fluid-filled, whereas bites from ants and other insects are typically pus-filled.
- Location can sometimes help distinguish tick bites from other insect bites because ticks most commonly bite the back of the neck, scalp, groin, and legs.
- Other insect bites may be multiple in number. Ticks typically bite once then burrow their head under the skin.
Rashes May (or May Not) Indicate a Tick-Borne Infection
A bulls-eye rash is often a telltale sign—not only of tick bite but of a potential Lyme disease infection. Other insect bites typically do not produce a rash with this distinctive pattern.
The skin is reddened in the area immediately surrounding the tick bite in this picture. Look closely and you’ll also see another “ring” of redness farther out from the site. This is called a bulls-eye rash – also known technically as Erythema Migrans (EM) rash – and appears only about 33 percent of the time when a person has been infected with Lyme disease.
In this photo, you see the bull’s-eye rash (EM) but no tick.
In this photo, you see the rash caused by bartonella.
Rashes may also indicate other types of tick-borne diseases, including tick-borne relapsing fever, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, Ehrlichiosis or Bartonella.
If you see this or any other rash pattern near a site, notify your healthcare provider immediately.
How to Safely Remove a Tick
If you see a tick still attached to the skin, remove it immediately. There are many ways to remove ticks, but some are more effective than others.
First, preserving the tick can help your doctor determine whether it carries a potential disease in the event that you develop any symptoms following the bite. Smashing a tick that is attached to your skin can also release more toxins into your body, which can further expose you to potential infectious diseases. So even though your initial inclination may be to squash a tick that has attached to your skin, try instead to keep it intact.
The following steps can help you remove the tick quickly and carefully:
- Grab the tick with pointed tweezers close to the skin where it has burrowed in.
- Do not squeeze the tick—that may cause more pathogen-laced saliva to enter the body.
- Pull upward with steady, even pressure. Do not twist or jerk the tick; this can cause mouth parts to break off and remain in the skin. Tick removal can get tricky if the tick’s body breaks apart during removal. If this happens, try to tweeze out the remainder of the tick body or leave it in place and have a healthcare provider remove it as soon as possible.
- You may hear a pop when the tick is removed.
- Place the tick in a ziplock bag and close it tightly. Keep it in the freezer.
- Clean the skin with alcohol and wash your hands.
- Do NOT use cigarette butts or matches.
Grab the tick with pointed tweezers close to the skin where it has burrowed in.
General symptoms of tick-borne diseases
If infected with a tick-borne illness, symptoms generally start to present themselves a few days after the bite. Although the symptoms vary based on the type of tick and the disease it may be carrying, general signs to watch for include the following:
- Mild itching
- Reddened area on the skin
- Very specific type of bulls-eye rash (EM) for Lyme
- Non-EM rash for other tick-related infections
Some of the diseases carried by ticks include borreliosis (Lyme disease and tick-borne relapsing fever—TBRF), babesiosis, ehrlichiosis, bartonellosis, anaplasmosis, tularemia, and rickettsiosis (including Rocky Mountain spotted fever). With certain diseases, symptoms may worsen over time. These may include memory loss, muscle weakness, fatigue, fevers that come and go, and declining cognitive functions.
Careful observation is an important first step after identifying any tick bite. Write down dates and circumstances of any bites you or a loved one encounter, along with any symptoms that present immediately or over time. If you see signs of a potential tick-borne illness, be sure to share this information with your healthcare provider. In many cases, patients and their doctors simply don’t realize that a tick bite from several weeks or months ago is responsible for their illness. Alerting healthcare providers as quickly as possible to any exposure to ticks may contribute to an earlier diagnosis of tick-borne illnesses.
Testing for tick borne diseases early and alerting healthcare providers as quickly as possible to any exposure to ticks may contribute to an earlier diagnosis of tick-borne illnesses.
Ticks: When Should You Worry About a Tick Bite?
Do you love to spend time outdoors? Then you are more likely to encounter ticks and tick bites at one point or the other. In fact, ticks are common in Europe and you can easily find them in grasses, shrubs, trees, and leaf piles.
Ticks aren’t bugs that bite you and then scoot off. Ticks are usually attracted to people and their pets and when one gets on your body, it finds a place to burrow its head through to eat. And when it set up a camp and starts feeding, it remains there for many days.
But do you know the scary part? Tick bites seldom cause any harm or any itchy sensation. It may look like a fleck of dirt on your skin at the beginning, but it swells up and becomes prominent as it feeds.
However, tick bites can cause allergic reactions, and some ticks can pass diseases to pets and humans which can be deadly.
What are Ticks?
Ticks are blood-sucking arthropods like spiders that belong to class Arachnida. There are more than 800 species of ticks worldwide but only ticks that belong to Families Ixodidae (hard ticks) and Argasidae (soft ticks) are implicated in diseases or illnesses.
- The Hard ticks attach and feed for days, and as the tick becomes full of blood, it tends to transmit diseases. The life cycle of ticks starts from the larva stage, then to the nymph, and to the adult male or female stage.
- The soft ticks are more rounded and soft. These ticks feed for less than an hour but disease transmission occurs in less than one minute.
Many tick-borne diseases have been recorded in Europe. Below is a list of the prevalent tick-borne diseases throughout the world:
- Lyme disease (borreliosis)
- Tick-borne relapsing fever
- Southern tick-associated rash illness
- Powassan encephalitis
- Q fever
- Colorado tick fever
- Heartland viral disease
- African cattle disease
A tick bite might leave a small red bump on the skin. Some people skin will show 1 to 2 inches of redness around the region of the tick bite. The red area will only become bigger if it’s a rash, and that’s a sign of disease
Risks and When to See a Doctor
Several factors can put you at risk of tick bites including:
- Hiking through grasses or in the woods with your skin exposed
- Not wearing clothes that cover the legs, arms and other body parts.
- Not using insect/ flea and tick repellants when you have pets at home.
Make sure you see a doctor if you notice the following:
- The bite area shows some signs of infection including swelling, pain, warmth, or oozing pus.
- Development of symptoms like headache, fever, stiff neck or back, tiredness, or muscle or joint aches.
- Part of the tick remains in the skin after removal
How to Safely Remove a Tick
If you notice a tick on any part of your body, it is important to remove it as soon as possible. You can follow these steps to safely remove a tick:
- Grasp the tick firmly at its mouth or head using tweezers.
- Pull firmly and gently until the tick detaches from the skin. Ensure you don’t twist or rock the tick to avoid leaving some parts inside in the skin.
- Wash your hands first with soap and water, and then the site of the bite.
- Swab the bite site properly with alcohol.
How to prevent tick-borne illnesses from tick bites
The ideal way to prevent tick-borne illnesses or infections is to prevent a tick bite. However, you can use the following tips below:
- Wear pants and long-sleeve shirts when walking in grassy areas or in the woods.
- Walk in the middle of rails.
- Check under arms, hairs, between legs, behind ears, and behind knees after being in tick-prone areas.
- Take a shower after spending time outdoors.
- Use tick repellants.
- Treat gear and clothes with 0.5 percent permethrin.
The sooner you identify and remove any tick from your body, the safer you are from tick-borne diseases.
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How to Spot and Treat a Tick Bite or Tick-Borne Illness
- If you have a tick bite and notice symptoms like a rash, hives, or pain and swelling at the bite site you may be having an allergic reaction.
- Signs that you’ve developed a tick-borne illness like Lyme disease or Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever include symptoms like a circular rash, fever, muscle aches, and headaches.
- If you think you have developed a tick-borne illness, seek medical aid immediately. Most allergic reactions to a tick bite can be managed at home.
- This article was medically reviewed by Mona Gohara, MD, a dermatologist at the Yale School of Medicine.
- This story is part of Insider’s complete guide to Bug Bites.
Tick bites are notoriously difficult to spot. That’s because ticks have a trick up their sleeves. When they bite you, the tick saliva acts as a painkiller, numbing the area so you don’t feel it.
As a result, you may not always notice if a tick has bitten you until it falls off, or if you have an allergic reaction.
Nevertheless, some types of ticks can pass harmful diseases on to humans, and it’s important to be aware of the signs of tick-borne illness, which can appear anywhere from three to 30 days after a tick bite.
Here’s how to recognize tick bites and tick-borne illnesses, when to seek medical attention, and how to prevent them in the first place.
What are ticks?
Ticks are small, blood-sucking parasites that live outside in grass, leaf piles, trees, and shrubs. They are a type of arachnid, closely related to spiders.
When a tick bites, it will attach to the skin of people or animals, feeding on the blood of whatever host it finds.
People encounter ticks outdoors, usually in wooded, grassy or bushy areas. While tick bites can occur year-round, you’re more likely to come into contact with them during warmer weather, from April to September, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).
Tick bite symptoms
Tick bites are nearly impossible to feel, says Andres Romero, MD, infectious disease specialist at Providence Saint John’s Health Center.
Romero advises removing your clothes after spending time in grassy or wooded areas and checking for ticks, paying close attention to places where your skin folds. Because once a tick gets on your body, it’s likely to migrate to warm and moist areas like your armpit or groin.
If a tick does bite you and you don’t notice, it will fall off on its own after a few days. Your skin will likely become red and itchy at the spot after the tick falls off. Many people don’t realize they’ve been bitten by a tick until this point.
However, others can experience an allergic reaction to a tick bite, indicated by the following symptoms once the tick bites you:
- Pain, swelling, or a burning sensation at the bite site
According to Romero, most people should be able to manage these symptoms at home with an over-the-counter antihistamine medication, like Benadryl, but it never hurts to get a doctor’s guidance if you’re worried your reaction might be severe.
If you have trouble breathing, you should seek medical attention immediately, as this can be a sign of a severe allergic reaction known as anaphylaxis.
Tick-borne illness symptoms
Lyme disease may appear as a circular rash within one month after a tick bite.
Some types of ticks can transmit diseases to humans and animals. In most cases, a tick needs to be attached and feeding for at least 24 hours to transmit disease, Romero says.
Examples of tick-borne illnesses include:
- Lyme Disease. Signs include a circular rash within three to 30 days of a tick bite, followed by the onset of a fever. The infection can spread to the joints, heart and nervous system, and if left untreated, it can cause long-term joint pain.
- Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (RMSF). Signs include a fever, muscle aches, headache, and a rash of flat, pink, non-itchy spots that appear on the wrists, forearms, and ankles. RMSF can be fatal if not treated with antibiotics within five days of illness.
- Southern Tick-Associated Rash Illness (STARI). Signs include a circular rash similar to the one associated with Lyme Disease. Other symptoms include fever, headache and joint pain.
- Tularemia. Signs include a skin ulcer that appears at the tick bite site, and swelling of lymph glands in the armpit or groin. It can be life-threatening without treatment, but is usually treated effectively with antibiotics, according to the CDC.
Not all types of ticks carry disease. You may be more at risk for tick-borne illness depending on where you live.
For example, the ticks that cause Rocky Mountain spotted fever are predominantly located in the Northwest region of the United States, and the Western blacklegged tick, which can transmit Lyme disease, is predominant in northern California.
Early recognition and treatment decrease the risk of serious complications from all of these illnesses, Romero says. You should consult a doctor if you develop a fever or any of these other symptoms after a tick bite.
How to prevent tick bites
The best way to avoid tick-borne illnesses is to protect yourself against ticks in the first place. Some best practices for decreasing your risk of tick exposure include:
- Wear protective clothing. For example, Romero suggests covering your ankles if you’re going to be out hiking, since ticks are likely to come into contact with you on the ground.
- Use an insect repellent registered by the Environmental Protection Agency, that contains DEET — the most common active ingredient in insect repellent products. Studies have shown DEET to be effective in preventing tick bites.
- Avoid wooded or bushy areas with tall grass, and walk in the center of trails when hiking or in the woods.
- When you do come inside, thoroughly check your body and clothing for ticks. You can tumble dry clothes on high heat for 10 minutes to kill ticks.
- Shower after being outside. If you do have a tick on you, it may not attach itself right away and showering can wash away any unattached ticks.
How to treat a tick bite
It’s important to always check for ticks after being outside, as the prompt removal of a tick is the best treatment against illness or infection. For more information, follow these 6 simple steps to remove a tick correctly.
After removal, or once the tick falls off, the bite site can become red and itchy. You may want to use calamine lotion to relieve itching, or a local anesthetic spray that contains benzocaine to reduce any pain at the site.
If you do develop signs of a tick-borne illness, your doctor will likely prescribe an antibiotic, such as doxycycline or amoxicillin. This can help treat an illness like Lyme disease and prevent more severe symptoms from occurring.
Antibiotics are the standard form of treatment for tick-borne illness, and they are very effective when used properly.
For Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, you may only need to use antibiotics for a week, but for Lyme Disease, you could take them for two to three weeks in order to treat your condition.
The length of time you may need to take antibiotics will also depend on how early you catch your illness and seek treatment. Overall, for all tick-borne diseases, the sooner you seek medical attention, the better.
90,000 Tick bite: signs, symptoms and effects
The season of tick activity begins in spring, it is during this period that humans and animals are most at risk of picking up the parasite. What are ticks, how to protect yourself from their bite and what to do if it does happen?
The season for ticks lasts from spring to autumn. The tick resembles a tiny bug, its body is only 4 mm long, has 4 pairs of legs, and is covered with a shell on top.Since the arthropod is very small, it is very difficult for a person to see its head and blood-sucking proboscis without special devices. Although the tick has no eyes, it can smell its prey at a distance of 10 meters, thanks to its well-developed sense of smell. The body of the male is smaller than that of the female. The female, having drunk blood, can reach up to 2 cm in size, she is able to drink blood 10 times her own weight.
Many people fear that the tick may fall from the tree and dig into the scalp or neck, where it is very difficult to detect it instantly.It is a myth. The tick does not rise above 50 cm from the ground, so this possibility is excluded. Often he waits for a warm-blooded creature in the grass or on the bush, and when it comes closer, it grabs with its front paws and climbs quite quickly. The parasite travels through the body of the victim, choosing for itself the most tasty areas (most often the stomach, neck, ears, armpits). Having found such a place, the parasite bites into the skin, cutting it with its proboscis, and begins to suck blood. The mark from a tick bite on the human body remains in the form of a small red spot 1 cm in size, if the person does not have a strong allergic reaction.
What are the effects of a tick bite in humans?
The victim’s condition depends on the number of bites and physique. The elderly, children and people with severe and allergic diseases are more difficult to tolerate. Possible signs of a human bite:
- redness of the skin area;
- the appearance of a headache;
- lowering blood pressure;
- rapid heartbeat;
- the appearance of skin rashes;
- enlarged lymph nodes;
- Constant feeling of weakness.
90,015 increase in body temperature;
The consequences of an attack depend on whether the parasite is infected or not. The most dangerous for humans is the bite of the encephalitis tick . The consequences of such a bite are extremely serious (in case of infection and refusal of treatment):
- body paralysis;
- deterioration in brain activity;
90,015 breathing problems;
If a person has suffered from a sterile tick, then complications may not be so dangerous:
- decay of the affected area;
- occurrence of an allergic reaction;
- the appearance of edema (up to Quincke’s edema).
It is impossible to independently determine whether an infectious tick has stuck or not. The appearance and color of a tick does not depend on whether it is infected or not. If bitten by an infected tick, timely treatment can save the victim’s life.
How long does it take for the symptoms of a tick bite to appear in humans?
The first symptoms appear in 2-3 hours in the form of skin redness. After a week or later, the symptoms described above may appear.
How does a tick bite differ from other insect bites? How to find out which insect has bitten and left characteristic marks on the skin? There will be one speck, there will not be the same in the neighborhood, with every hour the redness will increase, an allergic reaction may be observed. Can a tick just bite a person without sucking its head under the skin?
The answer to all these questions is no. The tick bites only for the purpose of saturation, and for this it needs to catch on well, inject an anesthetic and immerse its proboscis together with its head under the victim’s skin.Males need less blood to saturate, so they can fall off within an hour, but females need a lot of blood, so they can parasitize for up to 6 days and increase in size many times over. Ticks drink blood in order to get enough and leave offspring. Females will not be able to lay eggs in a hungry state – they definitely need blood.
How long can a tick suck blood?
From several minutes to several hours, and females, as a rule, stay on the victim’s body longer.It should be borne in mind that most of the time the tick is on the skin of a person or animal in search of a place for sucking, so if the tick has not yet sucked, it must be brushed off as soon as possible (you do not need to press it on yourself like a mosquito – you can bring an infection under the skin ).
On average, an adult sucks blood for 1-2 hours, after which it disappears.
How much blood can a tick drink at one time?
Hungry individuals of the ixodid tick weigh from 2 to 15 mg, and those who are fed from 200 to 1200 mg, which is many times their own weight.In one bite, a tick can siphon up to 1,000 mg of human blood. The size of a hungry tick does not exceed 4 mm, and a full one can reach 3 cm, becoming similar in size to a corn seed.
Does a tick die after being bitten?
Some seriously think that the tick dies after it bites a person, but this is not at all the case. On the contrary, the tick only benefits from the bite – this is its nutrition, which contributes to further development and reproduction. A hungry tick will not be able to leave offspring, therefore, biting people and animals is a vital necessity for it.
Why is a tick bite dangerous for humans?
A tick can serve as a carrier of a fairly extensive list of diseases, therefore, having pulled out a tick, it is better to save it for tests to determine infections (encephalitis, borreliosis, called Lyme disease). This is done in a laboratory at an infectious diseases hospital. Scientists have proven that the chance of infection from a tick is unlikely, since 90% of ticks, according to research, are not infected. Although minimal, there is a chance of infection.
First aid for a bite.
If a tick crawls over you, shake it off immediately, and if it has already sucked, then, as soon as possible, remove it and save it in a jar with moistened cotton wool or grass blades to bring it alive to the laboratory for studying and diagnosing infections. Treat the wound with an antiseptic. If there are signs of allergy – severe redness and swelling of the bite site, immediately give the victim an antiallergic agent.
How to remove a tick?
The arthropod is very firmly attached to the human body, since the saliva of the parasite acts as a hardener. The proboscis digs deeply into the skin, so the tick must be removed very carefully. Step-by-step recommendations for removing the tick: Using counterclockwise movements in a circle, as if unscrewing a self-tapping screw, pull it out of the skin with tweezers. Watch carefully so that the tick head does not come off. If you had to remove the bloodsucker in nature, and there were no tweezers nearby, a regular thread will help.With its help, the proboscis is tied around the very surface of the skin and is pulled out with light jerks. After removal, you need to make sure that the tick is intact, put it in an airtight container and deliver it to the sanitary and epidemiological station for analysis as soon as possible. Grease the surface near the bite with any antiseptic. People are often advised to treat the affected area with oil, kerosene, gasoline and other liquids so that the tick gets out on its own. This action is erroneous – the tick will try to sink even deeper under the skin.But if the insect comes out after that, its body will not be able to be examined in the laboratory.
What to do if the head of the tick remains under the skin?
The head of a tick can remain under the skin in case of careless, overly abrupt extraction. It looks like a small splinter, so some treat its extraction with negligence, saying “the tick is dead, the blood no longer sucks out – it will fall off by itself” or simply do not notice. But this is not recommended.Remaining under the skin, the tick proboscis will provoke inflammation and suppuration of the wound. Therefore, do not leave the head or proboscis of the tick under the skin, waiting for them to fall off on their own. Take a sharp needle disinfected in alcohol, pry out the remaining proboscis and remove it. After a bite, a small wound will remain on the skin, which will quickly heal if the tick was not contagious. Treat the bite with peroxide, then greenery or iodine. If the tick bite is very itchy, use Fenistil Gel or a similar itch-relieving agent.Try not to scratch the inflamed area so that the healing process goes faster. To prevent the head of the tick from remaining under the skin, grab it as close to the suction site as possible.
What disease can you get from a tick bite?
Subsequently, a tick bite in a person develops various ailments – from ordinary irritation to a serious or fatal illness.
Encephalitis : At first, the disease resembles a common cold.The incubation period can last up to a week. No analysis will give one hundred percent information about the infection if 10 days have not passed since the attack. For an accurate diagnosis, you need to bring a live and intact parasite for examination.
Borreliosis (Lyme disease) : This disease can be transmitted to humans if the tick contains borrelia bacteria. Symptoms do not appear immediately, after a while the lymph nodes increase, the body aches, a red ring appears on the skin.
What to do if you are bitten by a tick?
There is no need to panic, often an increased body temperature and muscle pain can be a manifestation of a protective psychological response of the body after fright and worries. The onset of the disease goes through certain stages: An unreasonable and short chill, an increase in body temperature up to 40 degrees. According to the clinical signs of the formation of encephalitis, this period is more like a flu infection. After a while, the patient may develop symptoms: nausea and vomiting, attacks of severe headache.At this stage, all symptoms indicate an upset gastrointestinal tract. After a few days, the patient will suddenly show symptoms of arthritis or arthrosis. The pains in the head disappear, they are replaced by aches of the whole body. Patient’s movements are very difficult, breathing problems arise. The skin on the face and body turns red and becomes edematous, purulent abscesses appear at the site of the bite. Further, the symptomatology only worsens, because the infection enters the patient’s circulatory system and begins its destructive work. Remember that delay can lead to death!
If a tick has been found on the body, it should be removed immediately. This procedure can be carried out on your own or you can go to the hospital. Health workers can easily pull it out and run a series of tests. Only in laboratory conditions can it be accurately determined whether this tick is dangerous. If treatment is necessary, you must unconditionally follow the recommendations and prescriptions of the attending physician in order to maximize the effectiveness of the treatment.
Branch of the FBUZ “Center for Hygiene and Epidemiology in the Ryazan Region in the Shilovsky District”
90,000 what to do if the bite site itches?
Ticks cause enormous damage to humans, not only by the possibility of spreading many infectious diseases, but also by a deterioration in the quality of life. The tick bite itself can go unnoticed, but very often after a while the affected area begins to itch, which is quite unpleasant.
Causes of itching after a tick bite
It is almost impossible to feel the moment of an arthropod bite. Sucking, he injects a special substance under the skin that has the effect of an anesthetic, so while the bloodsucker is on the body, no sensations arise. Why then it itches after a tick bite? There are reasons for this:
- Pruritus may indicate early development of Lyme disease. In the first stage of the disease, when erythema appears on the body, some people experience severe burning, itching and pain in the area of its occurrence.
- If the arthropod was improperly removed or torn off, it is possible that its head remained in the wound, which is overgrown in soft tissues. This place will constantly become inflamed, which makes you want to scratch it.
- There is also an opinion that if a female tick bites, her bite is not perceptible, but the bite of the male can itch very much. This is due to the fact that the males do not suck blood, but only feed on the top layer of the skin. The person scratches the site of the bite, and bacteria get there, causing inflammation.
What to do
Most ticks do not tolerate disease, so exposure to them does not cause serious health problems. But in any case, if the place of the tick bite itches, this symptom should not be neglected. The spreading itchy ring-shaped redness at the site of the suction of the bloodsucker, muscle aches, fever, severe fatigue are direct indicators for seeking medical attention.
If you have been bitten by a tick and itch very much, but there are no symptoms described above, you should still see a specialist and take blood tests.
Recommendations – BUZ RA “Dermatovenerologic dispensary”
Scabies is a highly contagious skin condition that causes severe itching and rash. The disease is caused by a specific skin parasite, the itch mite, which lives on and inside human skin.
Signs of scabies
1) Increased itching in the evening and at night. This symptom is due to the life cycle of the scabies mite, which is most active in the evening and at night.
2) Typical lesions. Despite the fact that in clean people, rashes are rare, elements of the rash over time spread to typical places that you need to know. The appearance of the rash is less important because the rash is varied.
Typical places of a rash with scabies: almost all – the interdigital spaces and lateral surfaces of the fingers, the area of the wrist joints, in men – the genitals, trunk, arms and legs, in women – the mammary glands. And also: flexion folds of the forearms and shoulders, buttocks, thighs and popliteal hollows.
Thus, scabies without hand involvement is not common. Such scabies is possible if the patient is clean, and the mites have not yet spread to the hands (for example, during the genital tract of infection).
Scabies is characterized by the group nature of itching.
If in the evenings and nights other family members began to itch, then it’s time to run to a dermatologist.
Regarding scabies, one must firmly understand that all its manifestations (itching, rash) are the result of an allergy to the tick itself, its bites and waste products (saliva, eggs, excrement).Understanding this, it is easy to deal with other features of scabies:
• the incubation period is 1-2 weeks on average. This time is needed for ticks to master a new place of residence, and the immune system – to start reacting to scabies mites and their waste. The more mites initially hit the skin, the shorter the incubation period.
• in case of re-infection, the reaction to the pathogen appears within a day. There is no immunity to scabies, so re-infection is possible.
• the severity of the rash depends little on the number of mites in the skin, but is due to the severity of an allergic reaction to their waste products.
Due to severe itching and frequent scratching, a bacterial infection is possible, which makes the skin rash more varied, including pustules.
Ticks are inactive in the morning and afternoon. A female tick, living no more than 4-6 weeks, in the evening and at night at a rate of 2-3 mm per day digs an itch passage in the epidermis, in which it lays 2-4 eggs daily. Males form short lateral ramifications in the female’s scabies. Mites dissolve the keratin of the skin using special proteolytic enzymes contained in saliva and feed on the resulting lysate (solution).At night, mites come to the surface of the skin for mating and the development of new territories. On the surface of warm skin, ticks move quite briskly – at a speed of 25 mm / min. It is clear that the easiest way to get scabies is at night in a shared bed.
The typical form is characterized by itching, a typical rash and the presence of itch burrows. However, there is scabies without moves, so the absence of moves does not prove the absence of scabies.
A typical scabies rash presents with small papules (reddish nodules) that may be scattered or multiple and confluent.Over time, papules (nodules) turn into vesicles (vesicles), open up with the formation of bloody or purulent crusts. Purulent crusts are the result of a secondary bacterial infection.
Scabies can be complicated, for example, by dermatitis (mechanical scratching of the skin against the background of its allergic inflammation) or pyoderma (purulent skin lesions with pyogenic cocci – staphylococci and streptococci).
Scabies of cleanliness or “incognito”: it is possible if a person bathes regularly and his immune system is in order.Characterized by single rashes and severe itching in the evening and at night.
Nodular (nodular) scabies: manifests itself in the form of a few itchy round nodules (seals) with a diameter of 2-20 mm red, pink or brown. Scabies can be found on the surface of the new nodules. Typical localization: scrotum and groin-scrotal folds, penis, inner thighs and buttocks, axillary folds, around the anus, areola.
Nodules are usually few in number.They are sometimes the only diagnostic sign of scabies.
Methods of scabies infection. Infection with scabies occurs mainly with close bodily (instead of contact-household) contact, usually with a joint stay in bed and intimate communication. A focus with scabies is defined as a group of people in which there is a patient – a source of infection and conditions for transmission of the pathogen. Children often become infected when they sleep in the same bed with sick parents. This is due to the biological characteristics of the mite:
• the itch mite is active in the evening and at night,
• it takes about 30 minutes for the mite to penetrate the skin,
36 hours), and loses activity even earlier.
The second place in terms of epidemic significance is occupied by invasive contact groups – groups of people living together, having a common bedroom (dormitories, orphanages, boarding schools, nursing homes, barracks, etc.) in the presence of close household contacts with each other in the evening and at night …
Indirect route of infection: through household items, bedding, clothing, etc. Extra-focal cases of infection with scabies (transient invasion) in baths, trains, hotels are rare and are realized indirectly with successive contact of a stream of people, with objects (bedding, toilet items) used by a patient with scabies.
Principles of scabies treatment:
• All patients from the same epidemic focus should be treated at the same time.
• Rub the preparation in the evening with bare hands, as hands are most often affected by scabies. If, after rubbing in the drug, it becomes necessary to wash your hands, then they must be re-processed.
• Trim your nails – mite eggs can be found underneath due to scratching.
• After completion of therapy, it is necessary to disinfest underwear and bed linen, towels, clothes and shoes, carry out wet cleaning in the room where the patient was: the tick is reliably killed by boiling for 5-10 minutes in a solution of soda or washing powder, you can still iron the clothes hot iron.If there are things that cannot be disinfected, then they can be packed in a plastic bag for 5 days or hung out in the open air. After 5 days, the clothes are considered to be disinfected. hungry ticks don’t survive that long.
Prevention of this disease, as well as many others and not only skin, but also infectious diseases is quite simple: adherence to the rules of personal hygiene.
Skin rash in children – symptoms, treatment, prevention, causes, first signs
You do not need to understand this multitude of conditions.However, some of them can be really dangerous for the child. Therefore, if any rash appears, you should contact your pediatrician in time. Do not forget that it is pointless to describe the appearance of the skin over the phone, the doctor must see the changes with his own eyes.
The causes of rash in children can be divided into four main groups:
- infectious and parasitic diseases;
- allergic reactions;
- diseases of the blood and blood vessels;
- lack of proper hygiene.
If an infection is the cause of the rash, you will notice other manifestations of it in your child, such as fever, chills, cough, runny nose, sore throat, abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, etc. maybe, as the first symptom of the current infection, and appear on the 2-3 day.
Among infectious diseases, rash is usually accompanied by such common childhood diseases as chickenpox, measles, rubella and scarlet fever.
The most dangerous is meningococcal infection. Meningococcus is a bacterium that most commonly causes nasopharyngitis, which is easy to treat, but in some cases it leads to meningitis (inflammation of the lining of the brain) and blood poisoning (meningococcemia). The rash with meningococcemia is in the form of hemorrhages and is accompanied by high fever. The disease is extremely dangerous – less than a day can pass from the moment the rash appears to the death of a person. That is why, at the slightest suspicion of meningococcal infection, the patient is taken to the hospital and therapy is immediately started.With timely treatment, the chances of a good outcome are 80-90%.
An allergic rash occurs after ingestion or contact with an allergen. Moreover, anything can serve as an allergen: chocolate, milk, nuts, various medicines, particles of pet hair, washing powder or conditioner for clothes, body cream, fabric from which underwear is made, etc. Allergic reactions can occur even after a light touching something. A classic example of this is the rash caused by stinging nettles or jellyfish.By carefully assessing your child’s diet and environment, you can probably figure out the cause of the allergy. Keep in mind that mosquito bites in children also cause local allergic reactions, so multiple mosquito bite marks can sometimes be mistaken for a rash.
Skin parasites can also cause rashes. Scabies, for example, is caused by a mite that makes microscopic bursts in the thin skin of the interdigital spaces, wrists, genitals, and other parts of the body.In the affected area, severe itching of the skin occurs. Scabies is extremely contagious and requires treatment by a dermatologist.
The rash in diseases of the blood and blood vessels is usually hemorrhagic, i.e. occurs as a result of hemorrhages in the skin. Depending on the pathology, it can be both large bruises of all colors of the rainbow, and a small-point rash that covers the entire surface of the body.
Due to the peculiarities of the skin of children and frequent defects in hygiene, frequent diseases in infancy are prickly heat, diaper dermatitis, diaper rash.The child should not be wrapped excessively. Try not to leave your baby in wet diapers or diapers. Bathe and wash your baby often, and let his skin breathe, practice regular air baths.
With this viral infection, the rash most often does not appear immediately, but 2-4 days after the temperature began to rise and catarrhal phenomena appeared (redness of the throat, runny nose, cough). A measles rash spreads from top to bottom: first appears on the face and head, then on the upper half of the body and arms, then descends below and on the legs, covering the entire body in 3 days.The spots are slightly raised above the surface of the skin, they are large and can merge.
Chickenpox (popularly chickenpox)
Rashes with chickenpox appear more often on the face, scalp, trunk. Their character changes in the course of the disease: red spots slightly protruding above the skin turn into bubbles with transparent, then cloudy contents in a few hours. The size of the windmill bubbles is no more than 4-5mm. Later they dry up and brownish crusts form in their place.The chickenpox rash is always accompanied by itching. A very important feature of this type of rash is the rash (the appearance of new elements), which is often accompanied by another surge in temperature.
Rubella rash appears along with signs of intoxication, fever, enlargement of the occipital lymph nodes. Numerous small spots (no more than 3-5 mm in diameter) appear in a few hours, spread from top to bottom, but much faster than with measles per day, the rash reaches the legs, the rash lasts an average of three days, then disappears without a trace.The characteristic localization is the extensor surfaces of the arms and legs, buttocks. It should be remembered that this viral infection is dangerous for pregnant women due to the adverse effect on the fetus. Therefore, if you suspect rubella in your child, do not invite pregnant women to visit.
The disease begins with signs of classic sore throat. The rash is connected to them, as a rule, on the second day. It consists of small-point elements that cover the entire surface of the body.There are especially many of them in the groin folds, elbow folds, in the armpits, in the lower abdomen. At the site of the most abundant rashes, the skin is red, swollen, hot to the touch. After 2-3 days, the symptoms of the disease, including the rash, subside, which is accompanied by severe peeling of the skin.
Almost always appears suddenly, often accompanied by profuse runny nose and lacrimation, itching a lot. The eruptions are embossed, well noticeable. Taking anti-allergic medications eliminates both itching and the rash itself.
With scabies, the rash is accompanied by excruciating itching and looks like point elements, often located in pairs, 2-3 mm apart. Typical localization of the hand and interdigital spaces, abdominal surface.
Mosquito and other insect bites are often mistaken for an infectious rash. A red itchy bump (papule) forms at the site of the bite. The characteristic localization, season of the year, where you live, and the absence of additional symptoms will help you and your doctor distinguish such a rash from an infectious one.
What you can do
If you find your child has a rash on the skin, try to follow the following rules:
- You should always call a doctor at home so that in case of an infectious disease you do not infect others in the clinic and in transport. In addition, anyone with a rash should be isolated from pregnant women until the doctor tells them it is not rubella.
- If you suspect meningococcal disease in your child, call an ambulance immediately.
- Before the arrival of the doctor, it is not necessary to lubricate the elements of the rash, especially with solutions with dyes (for example, “brilliant green”). As you already understood, the main causes of the rash are internal. Therefore, you will not achieve a pronounced positive effect from lubricating the elements of the rash. However, it will be much more difficult for the doctor to diagnose.
If you suspect a rash is caused by contact with clothing. Remember that in addition to unsuitable materials, residues of washing powder or fabric softener can also cause allergies.Try to change the manufacturer or use hypoallergenic hygiene products.
What a doctor can do
Only after questioning and thorough examination of the child, the doctor will be able to make the correct diagnosis and prescribe treatment. Viral infections, as a rule, do not require specific treatment; for bacterial diseases, antibiotics must be prescribed. In the treatment of allergic conditions, the basis is the termination of contact with the allergen and the suppression of an excessive immune response with antihistamines, glucocorticosteroids and other drugs.Depending on the severity of the condition, these drugs can be used in the form of ointments, tablets, injections, etc.
If the rash is caused by a blood or vascular disease, the pediatrician will refer the child to a hematologist for consultation. Treatment for scabies is carried out by a dermatologist and includes, among other things, a number of anti-epidemic measures.
Prevention of childhood infections primarily includes adherence to the vaccination schedule. You should know that a vaccine has also been developed against meningococcal infection.Talk to your pediatrician to find out when your child should be vaccinated against this dangerous infection.
Vaccination is the greatest human invention, which made it possible to prevent many serious infections. On the other hand, each vaccination is a whole test for a small, delicate child’s body. In some cases, children do not tolerate vaccinations very easily – an allergic reaction or fever may occur.