Local Elevated Risk Area Identified for Lyme disease

Lambton Public Health (LPH) has identified the Pinery Provincial Park and a 20km surrounding area - including Port Franks - as a high-risk area for Lyme disease due to the increased blacklegged tick population and the number of ticks positive for the bacteria that causes Lyme disease.

LPH has been using active surveillance techniques to identify the high-risk areas. Public Health Ontario's Lyme disease page has a map of Ontario's Lyme disease estimated risk areas for 2022, which shows areas in Ontario where they estimate you are more likely to find blacklegged ticks.

If bitten by an identified blacklegged tick from this high-risk area, and it has been attached and feeding for more than 24 hours, it is recommended that you consult a health care provider

Protect yourself against tick bites:

  • Routine tick checks after outdoor activities, regardless of your location. Even if you have not visited an area of elevated risk, it is good practice to perform a full-body tick check of yourself and loved ones
  • Cover up with long, light coloured tops and pants as well as closed-toe shoes
  • Use insect repellent with DEET or icaridin
  • Stick to marked trails and avoid densely wooded areas or areas with high grass

If you discover a tick during a routine tick check:

  1. Safely remove any tick(s) found (video resource: Tick Prevention, Checks and Safe Removal)
  2. Submit a photo of the tick for identification through LPH's online form or etick.ca
  3. Monitor for signs and symptoms of Lyme disease. The most common symptom is an expanding skin rash that can appear between three to 30 days after a tick bite
  4. Consult a health care provider if symptoms develop after being bitten by a tick. Lyme disease can be serious and have lasting effects. Early detection and administration of prophylaxis can prevent serious effects and, in most cases, the effects of Lyme disease can be treated successfully with antibiotics when treated in a timely manner

More information can be found on the Lambton Public Health website.