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  1. #1
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    Best ways to avoid ticks?

    I usually spray insect repellent on before I ride and try to stay out of away from overgrown stuff. The last two times out I've found ticks crawling on me. Are there any other things that people do to prevent ticks?

  2. #2
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    Look for something containg permethrin. Here are some things I have cut and pasted about it from wiki. I do a lot of backpacking and a huge amount of hikers use the stuff to ward off ticks.

    Permethrin is a common synthetic chemical, widely used as an insecticide and acaricide and as an insect repellent. It belongs to the family of synthetic chemicals called pyrethroids and functions as a neurotoxin, affecting neuron membranes by prolonging sodium channel activation. It is not known to harm most mammals or birds. It generally has a low mammalian toxicity and is poorly absorbed by skin.

    Permethrin kills ticks on contact with treated clothing. According to the Connecticut Department of Public Health, it "has low mammalian toxicity, is poorly absorbed through the skin and is rapidly inactivated by the body. Skin reactions have been uncommon."[4]

  3. #3
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    I would recommend Permethrin as it will actually kill the ticks if they are crawling on your clothing. Best to also use deet on exposed skin as an added measure.

    Here are a couple of good articles about it:

    http://www.wildernetwork.org/deet_vs_permethrin.html

    http://www.tickinfo.com/permethrin.htm

  4. #4
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    Do us a favor...don't spray permethrin on your skin. Yes, it works well, but use it on your clothing as intended by the companies who manufacture the stuff. Best to use DEET on your skin. It's the only repellant I'm aware of that's been shown effective for ticks.

  5. #5
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    I just ride faster. And stay the hell away from overgrown areas when stopped. It's not like they're gymnasts that are going to latch onto you in a millisecond.

    Of course I do a quick checkup after the ride. They don't usually bite down immediately, they like to crawl to warm hairy areas to do their feeding.

  6. #6
    tlg
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deme Moore
    It's not like they're gymnasts that are going to latch onto you in a millisecond.
    Actually they kinda are. Last year while riding I stopped and found about 15 ticks on my legs. It was the first time I stopped. They all got there while I was moving. Later I stopped counting at 25 ticks. They were horrible that day!

    Of course I do a quick checkup after the ride. They don't usually bite down immediately, they like to crawl to warm hairy areas to do their feeding.
    That's what I do and probably the best prevention you have. Any time I stop, I give my legs a look over, after I'm done, and when I get home. I've never had a tick on me that I couldn't just flick off.

  7. #7
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    Don't overuse permethrin. It's an insectacide. Use DEET as a general repellent and check yourself for tick after each ride. It takes at least 24 to 48 hours after biting for ticks to transmit the germ for Lyme disease, and as for other tick borne diseases, checking for ticks is the best preventative
    Remember, you are unique, just like everyone else.

  8. #8
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    Bio Major Trick

    Flea collars around the ankles were standard issue when I was in college trampling the woods. There is no real way to avoid ticks. Wash your clothes in the highest temp water on the machine. Scrub yourself down w/ a washcloth & strong soap. You need to wash off poison ivy oil too. I still got Lyme Disease once w/ the classic ring infection.
    Finesse is everything.

  9. #9
    Bicyclochondriac.
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    Quote Originally Posted by tlg
    Actually they kinda are. Last year while riding I stopped and found about 15 ticks on my legs. It was the first time I stopped. They all got there while I was moving. Later I stopped counting at 25 ticks. They were horrible that day!
    .
    Man, that's disgusting!!!!

    And yes, they are amazing gymnasts. A few rides ago I left the car and did a trail that was in no way overgrown. I never so much as put a foot down or brushed anything. I had two ticks the first time I stopped (20 minutes into the ride).

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deme Moore
    I just ride faster. And stay the hell away from overgrown areas when stopped. It's not like they're gymnasts that are going to latch onto you in a millisecond.
    I got lost about 4 years ago and ended up walking through some really tall grasses until I got back to the main trail and rode to the parking lot. Of course, I had a few ticks on me, so I started pulling them off before they latched on. I got a few off, then noticed there were more on the arm I just pulled them off of.

    wft?

    I pulled off a couple more, then saw more appear near the same spot. That's when I realized I was standing under a HUGE canopy of tree limbs, and the little f'ers were basically dropping onto me by the dozens. Uh, yeah, I ran!

    Got to the street, sat down and pulled as many off as I could find. In fact, I thought I was tick-free until I got home and checked for more. Seemed all clear 'til I got in the shower and spotted one on the ol' scrote. He was nicely latched on, of course. You don't need to know the rest, but it was a sad few moments following that discovery.

  11. #11
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    hahaha!

    sorry to laugh, but the way you told the story... I had to. BTW too much info.

    Quote Originally Posted by f3rg
    In fact, I thought I was tick-free until I got home and checked for more. Seemed all clear 'til I got in the shower and spotted one on the ol' scrote. He was nicely latched on, of course. You don't need to know the rest, but it was a sad few moments following that discovery.

  12. #12
    Old man on a bike
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    I guess I'm just lucky, ticks have just never liked me. Having them fall off trees like rain sounds especially creepy, hope not to experience that. I don't think we have as many ticks here in northern California as some areas, though.
    "...the people get the government they deserve..."
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  13. #13
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    Stay indoors and wear a Hartz collar.

    Or, in the alternative, +1 for DEET.

  14. #14
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    Don't they give you shots for Lime Disease here in the US? In Austria it is mandatory and the schools give you a series of shots for Lime Disease. After a series of 3 its a lifetime thing. So I'm not worried about ticks. But, they are still disgusting. One thing that helps is shaving your legs. Not a foolproof way but I would say it reduces them critters by 80%, maybe more. I noticed that when my wife and I were out and she had none, I had around 14 that day.

    There is just that thing about guys and shaving legs, most people don't understand it, especially when you're in public.

  15. #15
    Elitest thrill junkie
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deme Moore
    I just ride faster. And stay the hell away from overgrown areas when stopped. It's not like they're gymnasts that are going to latch onto you in a millisecond.

    Of course I do a quick checkup after the ride. They don't usually bite down immediately, they like to crawl to warm hairy areas to do their feeding.
    If only.

    They crawl to the end of weeds and other brush and then just start trying to grasp stuff, if you ride by, they'll hook on for a ride (then they'll begin crawling around and looking for a good place to bed down for the night).

    I dealt with them lost in Oklahoma, and the only way to make it a non-issue is to ride in places that are well-clear of anything that might brush up against you as you ride, and for some areas that's not very possible, in other areas it is.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

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  16. #16
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    I stopped messing around with those little f'ers this summer. In May I was bitten by a wood tick and caught Colorado Tick Fever.

    http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/e...cle/000675.htm

    Wound up in the emergency room thinking I had meningitis (sensitivity to light, splitting headache, high fever), then spent six days in bed, sicker than I've ever been. Didn't eat for 5 days, unbelievable body and head aches, 103-degree fever, leaking from both my front and rear shocks, if you catch my drift.... No fun at all. And then I recently learned about tick paralysis, where a tick that's been attached for a while releases a poison into your blood that gradually paralyzes you from the legs up. If it's not caught in time, it can stop your respiration and heart and kill you. Gnar.

    Definitely use permethrin. Don't take a chance. Kill the bastards before they get a chance to sink their teeth into you. I bought a can after my ordeal and tested it on a spider. Just a short spray, the thing died in seconds. Beautiful. You spray the stuff on your shoes, socks, outer shorts, backpack, jersey, etc., and let it dry. If one drops onto any of your clothes, it dies. It lasts for a couple washings before you need to reapply. Same stuff you find in flea and tick sprays from the pet store.

    Better living through chemistry!

  17. #17
    DeForest Stump
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    Quote Originally Posted by daleksic
    Don't they give you shots for Lime Disease here in the US?
    They did. Here's what happened-

    A vaccine, called Lymerix, against a North American strain of the spirochetal bacteria was approved by the United States FDA on December 21, 1998. It was produced by GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and was based on the outer surface protein A (OspA) of B. burgdorferi. OspA causes the human immune system to create antibodies that attack that protein.

    A group of patients who took Lymerix developed arthritis, muscle pain and other troubling symptoms after vaccination. A class-action lawsuit against GSK was filed on December 14, 1999.[56] On February 26, 2002, GSK decided to withdraw Lymerix from the market citing poor sales, need for frequent boosters, the high price of the vaccine, and the exclusion of children. This was in addition to the numerous financial settlements made because of the vaccine.
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  18. #18
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    Ticks are definately an issue here in Oklahoma. I use a liberal dose of bug spray on the legs, arms and neck. Every time I stop, I also do a quick check of the legs and arms, the places that will most often rub up against things that give the little buggers a chance to jump on board. Back in the truck, I keep a change of clothes, a very wet soapy wash cloth and a towl. Along with ticks, we also get the added bonus of lots of poison ivy. Changing at the trail head gives me another chance to check for ticks in some other places and wiping down with a wet soapy wash cloth also helps find them, as well as decreasing the amount of poison ivy I put in my truck and carry home. Something that someone else mentioned above, if the hair on your legs looks like something akin to what you see on certain critters at the zoo, shaving can make a noticable difference. I know that I seem to have less problems than other people riding the same trails.

    And last, the issue with tick and flea collars. The tick problem comes up very once in awhile on our local forum and last year, someone mentioned using some sort of tick and flea collar. A local doctor that rides, pointed out that dogs do not sweat, relying on panting to cool off. I can not remember his exact words, but basically tick and flea collars rely on the oils on a dog's hide to make the collars work. He stated the problem with a human wearing a collar would come about from the amount of sweat produced as we ride. This could lead to an excess amount of the active chemical on the collars being absorbed into the body.


    Brian

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