I promise, there are no pictures of ticks in this post.
There is no real way to start a blog-post about ticks except to get straight to the point.
Ticks or “fästing” as they are called in Swedish pose a huge problem at this time of year (Summer), particularly in the Stockholm Archipelago. But, newly arrived in Sweden, this is something you might not realise. The biggest issue with fästing in Sweden is that they can carry 2 illnesses, TBE (tick-born Encephalitis) and Borrelia or Lyme Disease. Both equally nasty and very difficult to treat once contracted. However, they are very easy to prevent.
The other problem with ticks is their size. They are incredibly difficult to find on your person. You are also totally unaware that you’ve been biten until they become big enough for you to notice them. A nightmare situation! Particularly nightmarish for the under 5’s who love nothing better than being outdoors, every hour of the day in Summer!
My tip is get you and your +1’s vaccinated and do tick check’s EVERY NIGHT before bath/bedtime. A tick check involves very carefully going over legs, arms, lower back, BUM, armpits, hairlines to check for small, black, raised dots. As soon as you see it you will know it is a tick. A freckle with legs that move…
Fästing.nu is a brilliant website that gives you really clear instructions on what to do if you find a tick and what symptoms to look out for if you think you or your family might have been infected. It is in Swedish and doesn’t seem to have a translation facility but there is always Google Translate in desperate times!
The CDC also have a really good table of resources about ticks and Lyme Disease
I’ve written this after having a couple of conversations with friends who needed more info about Ticks and how to deal with them.