Warning issued over tick bite increase, Lyme disease
The number of reported tick bites increased significantly last month, compared to previous years. The RIVM expects that half a million people will be bitten by a tick in this coming month, and warns that people should be extra vigilant in checking for tick bites after visiting a "green area" as the insect could transmit Lyme disease. Since the launch of Tekenradar.nl, there has never been so many tick bites reported in the first half of the year. So far a total of 4,740 people have reported tick bites - 20 percent more than last year. The increase was mainly seen in May and June with increases of 27 percent and 42 percent respectively, compared to last year. In the past three years, the most tick bites were reported in July. The RIVM therefore finds it especially important that people check themselves for tick bites after spending time outside this month. The longer a tick is attached to the skin, the better the chance of contracting Lyme disease. The RIVM also warns people to keep an eye on a tick byte for three months after removing the tick. If a circular spot appears around the bite, or if flu like symptoms appear, consult a doctor immediately. People who have been diagnosed with Lyme disease are invited to take part in a study on preventing and treat persisting symptoms of the disease. Those interested an register on this website or through their doctor.