Keeping kids Lyme free

When you were little, your mom probably strapped your sandals on your feet and dressed you in shorts before she sent you out to the backyard to play. Now, if you live in a region where Lyme is rampant, and you're aware of the trouble caused by Lyme disease symptoms, you're likely to cover up your kids from head to toe and spray them down with bug repellent before sending them outside.

Although you may feel the need to take more precautions if you live near wooded areas where deer that harbor ticks roam, the reality is that ticks are found even in urban neighborhoods. Anywhere grasses or shrubs grow, ticks can hide. Ticks need warm-blooded animals or people to give them a ride and a hot dinner. They cannot get around very far by themselves, so they hang out on the tips of branches, leafy bushes, grasses, and hop on when they sense a convenient critter walking by.

Lyme disease is a growing endemic, and prevention is the best medicine. Keep your kids protected when you send them out to play, and make sure older children are taking precautions, especially as they head out to the woods and trails for hiking and playing.