Health officials and exterminators warn of increased tick populations

MADISON COUNTY, Tenn. — If you’ve seen more ticks that usual this year, you might not be the only one.

“The tick population has increased, especially in the last 24 months,” Marty Dyer, owner of Golden Circle Exterminators, said.

Dyer says the blood-sucking bugs can hang out anywhere.

“In the grass, on trees, they can be in foliage around your house, just in shrubs and plant life, that kind of thing,” Dyer said.

So what should you do if you find a tick on you?

“Incidents from tick-borne disease is not something we see a whole lot of, but also something that can be serious,” epidemiologist Shanna Shearon of the Jackson-Madison Co. Regional Health Dept. said.

Sometimes people don’t realize it’s the tick that’s making them sick.

“We have so many allergies going on, other sinus-type issues, it can mimic those illnesses as well. So, we need to keep it in the forefront of our mind, especially this time of the year,” Shearon said.

So how do you keep the ticks out of your yard, out of your house, and off of you?

“It is probably just about impossible to say you can keep ticks out of your yard completely,” Dyer said.

But there are some things they can do.

“We can apply chemical. We can advise the homeowner to keep this foliage and your grass cut back, keep your shrubs trimmed back, keep your trees trimmed back,” Dyer said.

And take care of your furry friends, since ticks will often cling to dogs and cats.

To learn more about the proper way to remove a tick visit the Seen On 7 section of our website.

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