In most cases, tick treatment is as simple as removing the tick, disinfecting the bite site, and watching the area for signs of infection or disease. Occasionally, if the tick's mouth parts become embedded in the skin or if the bite starts to appear diseased, tick treatment can require a trip to the doctor. Treatment for serious disease, such as Lyme disease, that is transmitted by certain species of ticks, may require long-term care under a doctor’s supervision.
If a person or animal is bitten by a tick, the tick needs to be removed as soon as possible. Though ticks will fall off if allowed to feed, this process is lengthy and can allow the tick to pass more pathogens onto the host, leading to a greater chance that the bite will become infected or that disease will be transmitted. Removing a tick as a part of tick treatment is easy, though it does need to be done with care. The body of the tick should be held firmly in a pair of tweezers and slowly pulled straight out from the skin without attempting to twist it or smash it. The tick should never be burned, covered in paint or kerosene or killed before it is removed because these common removal methods can harm the person or animal with the tick bite.
If the tick comes out cleanly, the bite site should be disinfected as the next step in tick treatment. A mild antiseptic and an antibiotic ointment will take care of most bites. If, however, a part of the tick has become embedded in the skin, this piece will also need to be removed. In many cases, a doctor is required to remove the entire tick. Pieces of a tick should not be left in a person's body because they have a strong chance of becoming infected.
Occasionally, a tick bite will become infected or diseased despite a successful removal of the arachnid. Tick treatment for an infection involves a visit to the doctor and a dose of antibiotics. Bites that show signs of disease, such as Lyme disease, require more extensive treatment. This disease is treated with antibiotics, though it can take a considerable amount of time for it to clear up. A patient that has been diagnosed with Lyme disease will need to carefully follow all medical advice in order to ensure that the disease is successfully managed.