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Mumsnetters aren't necessarily qualified to help if your child is unwell. If you have any serious medical concerns, we would urge you to consult your GP.

Tick on DD's head- can I leave it?

(29 Posts)
Mosling Mon 07-Jul-14 19:18:05

Been camping in N Yorkshire then 3 days in London. At home in the bath for the first time ( grandparents just have shower) I can see what looks like a v small tick in DD2's hair. She's 18m and v wriggly, not happy about me looking and I can't imagine being able to remove it.

Can I just leave it, given it must have been there about 3 days and therefore any Lymes transmission is probably a done deal? I think I'm looking for the rash or a flu like illness if the worst happens.

Any thoughts from people who know? Am I risking anything if I let nature take its course?

Seriouslyffs Mon 07-Jul-14 19:19:16

I wouldn't have thought so, no!
Call NHS direct or go to A&E.

Swex Mon 07-Jul-14 19:20:30

No you can't leave it. If you can't deal with it then like previous poster I recommend getting it removed by a health care professional.

KatieKaye Mon 07-Jul-14 19:20:48

I'd get it checked out. If a tick dies its jaws remain clamped... so could get a nasty infection.

hellymelly Mon 07-Jul-14 19:21:39

Absolutely do not leave it. Get it out alive, take it to the GP and it can be tested for Lymes. I know a young adult who picked up Lymes as a child, it wasn't diagnosed for some years and she has major health problems now. If the tick has Lymes the longer it is there the higher the chances of transmission, and nymph ticks are the most likely to spread Lymes (they are very small). It is important you remove the tick without stressing it so that it doesn't vomit up stomach contents, so use a proper tool, or a cotton thread, google for films of how to do this.

MickiJohn Mon 07-Jul-14 19:22:51

Just take it out.

Twist anticlockwise with tweezers if small or your fingers if big. Don't squeeze.

Use antiseptic spray afterwards. Better to get it out quickly because of Lyme Disease.

MrsCampbellBlack Mon 07-Jul-14 19:23:19

No, don't leave it. Dh had v nasty reaction to a tick recently. Needs to be removed carefully.

nigerdelta Mon 07-Jul-14 19:24:17

I thought you didn't twist, when I took one off my cat I gripped very firmly & pulled straight out. It was like removing a plug shock. I thought twisting might leave mouth parts behind which increases chance of infection.

MickiJohn Mon 07-Jul-14 19:24:27

I'd call the docs just in case once it's out. My friend's DD had to have check ups every couple of months for a year to make sure she didn't have Lyme Disease.

exexpat Mon 07-Jul-14 19:25:23

Have you got any friends/neighbours with a dog? They may have a tick-twister - little thing designed to get ticks out of pets' fur whole.

MickiJohn Mon 07-Jul-14 19:25:56

No definitely twist. If you pull you can leave the head in.

I've taken hundreds off the dog. Definitely twist! They burrow in clockwise so remove it anticlockwise.

Knottyknitter Mon 07-Jul-14 19:27:30

Tick card from good camping shop, minor injuries or ed.

elfycat Mon 07-Jul-14 19:28:08

Please go to the GP for advice/ antibiotics even if you remove the tick. Do not squeeze it (with tweezers) as that's another infection risk.

I've looked after patients who have had Lymes disease and it can cause all kinds of complications that make things like surgery more, well, complicated!

TeamEdward Mon 07-Jul-14 19:28:10

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

nigerdelta Mon 07-Jul-14 19:29:27

This says very clearly Do Not Twist.

MickiJohn Mon 07-Jul-14 19:35:10

Hmm. I always twisted and my vet twists. I've never had a problem...

Well, pull or twist I think it needs to be removed. Then the doctors either way.

onedogatoddlerandababy Mon 07-Jul-14 19:37:02

You need to remove it, use a tick remover, otom ones are what we have for the dog, vets/pet shops sell them, as will camping shops and some pharmacists.

And yes to twisting it out with the tool. You just sort of twirl them out.

Mosling Mon 07-Jul-14 23:39:39

Ok, general consensus it needs to be removed. Just not sure how feasible that is, and also aware that while untreated Lymes is serious (and I'll be keeping a close eye out), it's not serious if caught early.

Mosling Mon 07-Jul-14 23:59:35

Duly removed from sleepy daughter, will call GP in morning. Thanks for helpful link and tips!

hellymelly Tue 08-Jul-14 10:06:56

Well Lymes is treatable if caught early, yes, but the symptoms can take a while to appear, and they are so like a bog standard childhood virus in appearance that they can often be missed. Lymes is very hard to diagnose and it seems likely that many supposed cases of other illnesses are in fact due to Lymes. My friend's dd had years of mis-diagnosis and tests, all through her teens in fact, so I personally wish there was far more awareness of Lyme's and how serious it is, and how easy to catch. Most people never know they have been bitten, as nymph ticks are so tiny, and the classic bull's eye rash often doesn't appear. Anti-biotics need to be given very early to eradicate Lyme's before it becomes systemic.

Theonlyoneiknow Tue 08-Jul-14 10:27:38

Best tick removal information here:

InSpaceNooneCanHearYouScream Tue 08-Jul-14 13:47:01

I agree with Helly- you wouldn't necessarily know whether she had contracted Lyme's or not, and it doesn't always show up on blood tests either. You should get the tick tested

Theonlyoneiknow Tue 08-Jul-14 13:59:10

The chances of getting lyme disease is slim, only a very small percentage of ticks carry the disease but it is a nasty nasty illness that you really don't want to get.

hellymelly Tue 08-Jul-14 15:37:33

Actually the percentage of ticks carrying Lymes is surprisingly high, latest study for my area , which is never considered a very risky area, showed 30-40% of ticks were carriers. That is pretty high, we don't have deer, am in West Wales, so not an area known for Lyme's. Awareness of Lyme's is increasing, it is much more of a public health issue than was previously thought, mainly due to the fact that it is hard to connect a health issue years later, with a bite you may not even be aware you had.

JustTheRightBullets Tue 08-Jul-14 15:43:40

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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