How to Smother a Tick

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Smothering a tick uses alcohol, Vaseline or oil to suffocate the animal and detach it from skin, though tweezers are a safer method of extraction. Kill ticks carefully to prevent Lime disease or other infections with tips from an expert gardener in this free video on caring for trees and plants.

Part of the Video Series: Gardening for Trees & Plants
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Video Transcript

Hi this is Yolanda Vanveen and in this segment we are going to talk about how to smother a tick. Now there's all types of information out there and in the end the best way to remove a tick from your body is with a tweezer or a special tick remover. Because whatever you are using to smother that tick, there's always a chance that the part of it will end up inside of the wound and it can get infected. And in the end ticks are very primeval bugs and they don't need a lot of oxygen and whatever, whatever you try to smother them with, there's a chance that they will survive for quite a while and continue to eat into our skin so it's best to take tweezers any type of tweezers and try to pull them out from the head and pull the entire tick out. Because whatever you are smothering them with in the end they can still do damage. But you can still try to smother them. And the best way to smother them is with rubbing alcohol. So just put rubbing alcohol on a cotton swab and just cover them with that. And make sure they are just covered. And that way the rubbing alcohol will break down their body and eventually they should die and they'll release. Another way to do it is Vaseline or oil or rubbing oil or any kind of olive oil and you just cover them up. The problem with that is apparently ticks can survive for quite a while without any oxygen. So even if you cover them up completely they will still be eating into your skin so even if you cover them up and trying to smothering them there is still a chance that they are going to continue to do damage. So going back to the best way is to use tweezers and actually pull them out. Other people swear to take a match, light the match, blow the match out, keep it really hot and actually burning them and it scares them enough that they will come out. But other swear that that's not good because they can actually do more damage cause you are going to force them to fight their way into your skin even more. So in the end protect yourself by putting oil on your body to start so that they won't bite you in the first place. And if you do get attacked by a tick make sure and use any type of tweezer and try to pull it out completely and you can try smothering it in a lot of different ways whether it's with oil or rubbing alcohol or any other type of item that's going to stop them from breathing. Other say put them under water put your whole hand underneath water and they won't get any oxygen but other say they'll still do damage and it will take a long time for them to die. Cause like roaches, roaches can live in a ship underneath the ocean for more then a hundred years without any oxygen. So it's very difficult to smother them so protect yourself to start and use a tweezers and only smother them as a last resort.


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