Tick-Borne Illnesses on the Rise in Alabama: Here’s What You Need to Know
Tick-borne illnesses are growing at an alarming rate within the State of Alabama, and although these diseases can be easily treated, they can be difficult to diagnose.
The University of Alabama at Birmingham recently issued a special statement about tick-borne illnesses:
"The Alabama Department of Public Health reports that the number of Lyme disease cases reported has risen from two in 2010 to 38 in 2016. Reported cases of the disease anaplasmosis, also transmitted to humans by the bite of an infected tick, have averaged almost 20 cases a year for the past five years. And the most common disease on the rise from tick bites in Alabama — Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, or Spotted Fever Rickettsiosis — has jumped from 79 cases in 2011 to 453 in 2016."
The key to treating tick-borne illness is early diagnosis. After a tick bite, monitor the site for a rash, which can often take on a bulls eye shape.
Other symptoms include headache, fever, nausea, and muscle weakness or stiffness.