Lehigh Valley is Lyme disease hotspot; Pa. has highest rate of infections in U.S.

Written by on June 17, 2020

Lehigh Valley is Lyme disease hotspot; Pa. has highest rate of infections in U.S.

By Staci Inez

June 17, 2020

The culprit: Lyme disease is caused by the bite of a blacklegged tick. Photo | NPR

Researchers say June and July are peak times for ticks carrying Lyme disease to infect people in Pennsylvania. There are several things you can do to protect yourself outdoors. 

Professor Marten Edwards of Allentown’s Muhlenberg College said Pennsylvania has the highest numbers of lyme disease cases in the country… and the Lehigh Valley should be considered a hotspot. 

He said many people can be exposed to the disease without knowing because the most infectious ticks are almost too small to notice. 

“These are not your big dog ticks that you would usually see.. These are little tiny things about the size of a poppy seed. They’re active right now…that’s why we really need to be extra careful.”

So, if you’re going to be out in wooded areas or places with high grass.. You should treat your clothes with a chemical called permethrin – which Edwards says is easy to find… but if not… you can use basic insect repellent. 


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