Ticks and Lyme disease.
In the United States, ticks that carry Lyme disease can be found in the Northeast including New York State and Maine. They are also found in the upper Midwest and along the Northwest coast. Recently, the Maine Centers for Disease Control released updated numbers for three important tickborne diseases in the state for 2014. The number of cases of Lyme disease in 2014 was about 1,334 in Maine. Health officials believe that it may take a couple of months to tally any remaining cases so this number will probably increase.
Ticks are small arachnids that constitute the subclass Acarina. They are external parasites that live on the blood of mammals, birds, reptiles and amphibians. They have been known to carry a number of diseases including Lyme disease.
Lyme disease is a bacterial infection caused by the bite of tick. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “the blacklegged tick (or deer tick, Ixodes scapularis) spreads the disease in the northeastern, mid-Atlantic, and north-central United States, and the western blacklegged tick (Ixodes pacificus) spreads the disease on the Pacific Coast.” Most people are infected by one of three tickborne diseases (Lyme disease, anaplasmosis and babesiosis). They usually come from the bites of immature ticks called nymphs. .If not treated properly, Lyme disease can cause health problems.
In the early stages of the disease, you may experience flu-like symptoms. This could include a stiff neck, chills, fever, swollen lymph nodes, headaches, fatigue, muscle aches, and joint pain. A bite victim might also experience skin rash around the bite area. In more advanced stages of the disease, nerve problems and arthritis, especially in the knees, may occur. Patients who are treated with antibiotics in the early stage of the infection usually recover quickly and completely. The Maine CDC reminds health care providers to be aware of the risk and prevalence of tickborne diseases and consider them in their diagnosis.