THE Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park Authority is advising people using the park to heed a few safety tips to guard against Lyme disease.
The condition is spread by ticks most often found in woodland, heathland, long grass and even urban parks and gardens, and the disease can cause serious complications if left untreated.
Initial symptoms of a tick bite may include fatigue, fever, nausea, ‘summer flu’, headaches and a stiff neck, and while the most distinctive sign of a bite is a bull’s-eye rash, many patients don’t experience this and may not even notice they’ve been bitten.
Tips to protect yourself from Lyme disease include: sticking to pathways and avoiding long grass, tucking your trousers inside your socks and wearing long sleeved tops, using insect repellent when walking in wooded areas, checking yourself and your children thoroughly for ticks, and showering when you get home from a walk.
If you see an embedded tick in your skin, remove it as quickly as possible using the correct technique (see www.lymediseaseuk.com for details), and if you become unwell or notice a rash, see your GP immediately and mention your concerns about Lyme disease.