Ticks, poison ivy, and sunburns. Yay! Summer is here!

June 12, 2019 - 10:00 pm
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Kansas City, MO - There's nothing like Summertime, the kids splashing in the pool, late nights filled with laughter around the fire pit, and exploring nature. Unfortunately, that also means sunburns, bug bites, and poison ivy. 

Dr Dan Aires, head of dermatology with The University of Kansas Health system says to protect yourself from the dangers of the sun, avoid being out during the peak burning hours, between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., and be sure to cover up. 

"Wear a hat if you can. Put on some sunscreen, ideally sunscreen that has zinc or titanium in it," explains Dr Aires.

If you happen to get burned, he has a few tips. He suggests taking an Aspirin or another kind of anti-inflammatory. You can use a towel soaked in cold water or a cold bath to help sooth the burn. He also says using aloe vera can help. Dr Aires warns against using topical pain medications. He says those can be irritating and can cause an allergic reaction. 

When it comes to ticks, and bug bites, instead of spraying your skin with bug spray, try spraying your clothes first and letting them dry before putting them on. 

Dr Aires says if you're out in nature, you should check yourself, children, and pets thoroughly for ticks. 

"Some of the most dangerous ticks, like the ones that carry Lyme disease, can be very very small, and they can wedge themselves into really tiny places. You got to look between the kids toes, etc... It's really important to get a tick off in less than 24 hours, urges Dr Aires.

Chances for Lyme Disease or Rocky Mountain spotted fever go up after that time frame. To remove a tick, he says to clean the area with rubbing alcohol, then with tweezers, grasp the tick right next to the skin, and slowly and steadily pull the tick out. Dr Aires warns that if there is a black spot left behind, the head is still under the skin. You may need to visit your doctor to have it removed. 

When it comes to poison Ivy, Dr Aires says to first wash the area thoroughly with soap and water....and remember to wash your clothes and pets if they were exposed.

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