Lyme Disease

PDF version

This Tech Tip was originally published as the April 2016 “Safety Pins”
by Philip E. Spiezio, Safety Officer, Washington County Office of the Safety Officer

Lyme disease is a bacterial infection that can be caused by the bite of an infected deer tick. Untreated, the disease can cause a number of health problems. Patients treated with antibiotics in the early stage of infection usually recover rapidly and completely. There are about 30,000 confirmed cases of Lyme disease reported every year.


Deer ticks live in shady, moist areas at or near ground level. They will cling to tall grass, brush, and shrubs, usually no more than 18–24 inches off the ground. They also live in lawns and gardens, especially at the edges of woods, and around stone walls.

Deer ticks cannot jump or fly, and do not drop onto passing people or animals. They get on humans and animals only by direct contact. Once a tick does get on the skin, it generally climbs upward until it reaches a moist protected area.

Here are some ways to protect yourself, while spending time in the outdoors:

PDF version

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License icon

This work by the Cornell Local Roads Program (CLRP) is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.