How to Protect Children From Tick Bites at Camp
Aug 01, 2015 03:16AM
● By Stacy Skoldberg
When the phone rings and panicked parents have found a tick on a child who attends camp, they often ask if the camp can go spray the camp fields. The solution can be a little less dramatic if some preventive measures are taken.
Wear a hat. Ticks crawl north to the warmest part of the body, toward the head. Ticks especially like children for their extra thin skin (easier to bite) and higher body temperature (easier as a target). If possible, wear the hair away from the face and wear a light colored hat.
Wear child-safe bug repellent. Although most bug repellents are not in fact labeled for ticks themselves, the smell often keeps them at bay.
Check for ticks daily with a magnifying glass. Taking 10 minutes to teach your child how to check their arms, legs and body for ticks with the use of a magnifying glass can help catch ticks before they attach.
Treat shoes with permethrin. Permethrin is a plant-based product safe for children ages 3 and up. Clothing for sale labeled as tick repellant-treated clothes are treated with permethrin. Mist shoes with a permethrin solution and then let them dry; each time the shoes get fairly wet, you should re-apply to the shoes. All tick pesticide applicators treat not only their pants but boots with permethrin.
Dress with light-colored clothing. The lighter the coloring of clothing, the easier a tick will be to spot.
Use the dryer to dry clothes. Ticks are able to survive hot water and detergents like Tide and bleach. The only way to kill a tick in the laundry process is drying on a high setting for 15 minutes.
Stacy Skoldberg is the founder and managing partner of GreenSprays, a Fairfield County company that offers organic tick spray products. She can be reached at [email protected] or 203-916-3666.