Its time to up your awareness of ticks.  Hiking is a great pastime but even just a walk outside to run errands can expose you to ticks.  A rare diagnosis of a serious tick-borne illness, the Powassan virus was just diagnosed in a Maine resident. Bangordailynews.com reports that a resident of Southern Maine is confirmed to have been infected with the Powassan virus in June.  The Maine resident required hospitalization.

The Powassan virus can be carried by the woodchuck tick and the deer tick. According to bangordailynews.com, The Powassan virus is a serious illness with about half the victims suffering long-term health issues.  Symptoms of the disease include vomiting, seizures, memory loss, fever, headache, and confusion.  In the most severe cases, the Powassan virus can cause brain infections and the disease can even be fatal.

Be smart, be aware and check yourself and your clothing for ticks.  I have mentioned tick awareness in a previous blog post.  It’s helpful to wear light-colored clothing, a hat and use some type of insecticide.