GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.– Temperatures are rising and that means the tick population is also growing. Last year there were 98 cases of reported lyme disease in Michigan and over the years the number of cases are slowly rising.
The majority are in the U.P. and along the Lake Michigan shoreline. The Michigan Department of Community Health says the tick population that may transmit the disease is actually expanding along those shoreline counties.
Not all ticks carry lyme disease, it’s the black-legged tick to look out for and one of the best indicators you’ve been bit is a red bulls eye on your skin.
Carrie Nielsen has been living with lyme disease for 17 years and says everyday is a struggle. “Severe headaches, dizziness, nausea, those are my main symptoms. There’s many more to go along with it. It can get where I can’t even walk up the stairs because one day my knee just doesn`t want to work right.”
Nielsen works to spread awareness about the disease through Facebook and passing out flyers at local doctors offices. The key is prevention, simple things like using DEET, wearing long pants and shirts, even doing “tick checks” on your family and pets when they come in from being outdoors.
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