How to avoid tick and mosquito bites

Posted Aug. 19, 2014, at 5:53 p.m.

Maine CDC recommends the following preventive measures to protect against tick-borne illnesses:

1. Wear light-colored clothing so it’s easier to spot ticks; wear long sleeves and tuck your pants into your socks.

2. Use insect repellent with DEET on your skin and apply permethrin, a common insecticide, to your clothes.

3. Check your skin and clothing for ticks and remove them promptly. Don’t miss warm, moist areas such as behind the ears, the armpits, neck and groin.

4. Wash possible tick bites with soap and water and apply an antiseptic.

5. Keep your lawn mowed and tidy to remove tick habitat.

6. If you spot an embedded tick, use tweezers to grasp its mouth and pull it out with steady pressure. Don’t use petroleum jelly, hot matches or nail polish remover, which can increase the risk of infection.

Maine CDC recommends these steps to protect against EEE, West Nile virus and other mosquito-borne illnesses:

1. Avoid spending time outdoors at dawn and dusk, when many species of mosquitoes are most active.

2. Use an EPA-approved repellent when outdoors, especially around dawn and dusk, and always follow the instructions on the product’s label.

3. Wear protective clothing when outdoors, including long-sleeved shirts, pants and socks.

4. Use screens on windows and doors to keep mosquitoes out of the home.

5. Empty standing water where mosquitoes can breed, such as from flower pots, buckets and barrels.

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