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Published on May 21, 2019

how to remove an embedded tick

How to remove an embedded tick

Tick season is here! Tick bites can be slightly annoying similar to other bug bites, but they can also lead to Lyme disease and tick-borne illnesses.

If you come across an embedded tick on yourself or someone else here's how to properly remove it:

  1. Gently pull the tick out with tweezers by grasping its head as close to the skin as possible
  2. If the head remains, try to remove with a sterile needle
  3. Wash the bite site with soap and water. Rubbing alcohol may be used to disinfect the area
  4. Apply an ice pack to reduce pain
  5. If signs of infection, rash, or flu-like symptoms occur within 30 days, seek medical attention

Here is what NOT to do when removing an embedded tick:

  • Do not grab the tick at the rear of the body
  • Do not twist or jerk tick while pulling it out
  • Do not use alternative methods to remove it; such as fingernail polish, alcohol, petroleum products, or a hot match.

If you have concerns or questions regarding tick bites or any bug bites please contact our 24/7 Nurse Advisor Line at (608) 775-4454.

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Every day, Gundersen Health System staff deliver great medicine plus a little something extra—we call it Love + Medicine.

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