There’s been a lot of stir in the last few years about Lone Star Ticks and their ability to cause a potentially dangerous meat allergy. This week, we’ll be getting to the bottom of it, including how you can avoid a nasty bite from a Lone Star Tick.
Alpha-gal Syndrome and Lone Star Ticks
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Alpha-gal is a form of sugar found in the meats of many land animals, including beef, pork, and venison. Alpha-gal Syndrome is an allergy to this sugar and, by extension, the meats that contain it. Alpha-gal reactions can be intense and potentially life-threatening.
In other countries, Alpha-gal has been shown to result from bites by various species of ticks. In recent years, mounting evidence is suggesting that the Lone Star Tick is responsible for causing Alpha-gal Syndrome in the United States. However, other tick species in the U.S. have not been ruled out as potential causes for this nasty allergy.
Distribution of the Lone Star Tick
The Lone Star Tick is found widely in the southern, eastern, and parts of the midwestern United States, including the entire four-states area. The entire states of Missouri and Arkansas are part of the Lone Star Tick’s range, as well as about half of Oklahoma and Kansas. The humid, eastern portions of Oklahoma and Kansas are the areas where Lone Star Ticks are found.
For more information on the distribution of Lone Star Ticks, consult this map on the CDC website.
How to Avoid Tick Bites
Tick bites can be hard to avoid in the four states if you spend time outdoors. But there are steps you can take to mitigate the risk of a Lone Star Tick bite.
- Wear long pants, socks, and bug spray if you’re going into wooded areas or grasslands.
- Treat your yard for ticks.
- Ensure pets have anti flea and tick treatments.
Tick Control Solutions from Bug-A-Way Pest Control
At Bug-A-Way Pest Control, we offer powerful tick treatment to keep your yard safe from ticks, including the Lone Star Tick. To learn more about our tick treatments, please visit our tick treatment page.