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COVID-19 and the Country

How to Survive the Country
 
Over the past several weeks I have noticed that a fair number of my patients and their families are “sheltering at home” in rural areas. Either with extended family or at a second home, having the space and room to enjoy the outdoors while practicing social distancing is a luxury. That being said, I want you “city folks” to stay safe in the great outdoors.
 
Lyme disease and tick-borne illness.
 
The chances of getting severely ill from Covid-19, especially in a rural/suburban area is small. However, Lyme disease is a real risk and can have devastating and long-term health consequences. This is predicted to be one of the worse seasons for ticks in many years. The warm winter did not kill off a significant portion of the tick population and they have been multiplying for the past year.
 
Take precautions; wear long pants and shirts when walking in wooded areas or gardening. Tuck your pants into your socks and apply high concentration bug spray to your clothes. Lower concentration bug spray can be used on exposed skin. Check yourself and your children daily, and if you have pets treat them with tick repellent such as NexGuard or Advantix. Take showers daily and use a scrub pad to dislodge any small ticks you might miss in your daily checks.
 
If you find a tick, remove it with tweezers and save the tick in rubbing alcohol or in a sealed plastic bag. Contact me and we can have the tick analyzed for the presence of Lyme Disease and other tick-borne illnesses.
 
Consider having a dose of Doxycycline on hand. Research suggests that one dose of Doxycycline taken within 48 hours after removing a tick can significantly decrease your chance of contracting Lyme Disease. Call my office to set up a consultation to discuss this if you would like further information.

Getting outside daily even if you have stayed in the city is vital for your mental health. While Lyme disease is more prevalent in the country, ticks carrying Lyme disease have been found in city parks, so be safe no matter where you are. While this is a challenging time for us all, try to enjoy the beauty around you.
 
Stay safe, stay healthy, stay sane.

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Author
Jacqueline Jones

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COVID-19 Update: we are now open

We have implemented a strict infection control protocol to address the current situation. Social distancing techniques and appropriate protective equipment will be in place. I am confident in our ability to provide quality care to you and your family.