Have You Found a Tick on You? You Can Have it Tested
Tick season is not over in Maine. Believe it or not, fall is actually the peak time for ticks and with so many of us desperate to get outdoors they can still be a threat to humans if they should be bitten. Lyme disease is one of the biggest concerns from a tick bite.
If you've been bitten by a tick, or think you might have, The University of Maine will test that tick for you to see what type of tick it is and if it was carrying any disease.
The University of Maine tick lab stresses that you don't wait for results from your tick test to see your doctor. They say on their website, "The tick testing service is intended to provide surveillance information on ticks and tick-borne disease in Maine. We test ticks only and cannot provide testing for human or animal samples. Consulting a physician should not wait until tick testing results are available."
So how do you send a tick? First fill out a submission form on the University of Maine website where you'll pay $15 and get a sample number. Put your tick, alive or dead in a Ziploc bag and label it with your name and sample number. Then mail it to the University and they will get back to you with the results.
The data they collect from these tests help them generate a map of the state to see where ticks are most prevalent and what diseases they are carrying. They test deer ticks for lyme disease, anaplasmosis and babesiosis and also test dog ticks for Rocky Mountain spotted fever, Ehrlichiosis and Tularemia.
Remember though, if you think you have been bitten by a tick, don't wait. See your doctor.