Parents in Oregon recorded the terrifying moments after their daughter was left partially paralyzed from being bitten by a tick.
On May 13, Amanda Lewis posted a concerning video on Facebook of her daughter, Evelyn.
“Evelyn started acting a little weird last night around bed time,” Lewis wrote in her now-viral post. “She didn’t want to stand up after her bath to get into her pajamas. I helped her and got her in bed. She was a little fussy last night and I ended up sleeping in bed with her all night.”
By the next morning, Lewis’ daughter was having an even more difficult time standing, and she could hardly crawl or use her arms. She and her husband recorded video to send to family to see if they might shed any light on her condition. Soon after capturing the footage below, they decided to take Evelyn to an emergency room because her symptoms only got worse.
“We got into a room quickly, thank God, and were seen almost right away,” Lewis wrote. “The doctor talked to us for a minute and said over the past 15 years he had seen about 7 or 8 children her age with identical symptoms and more than likely she had a tick. They looked her over, combed through her hair really well and sure enough found a tick hiding in her hair.”
Once the tick was removed, Evelyn started feeling like herself again by the next morning and has since made a full recovery. Still, so scary! “I feel awful for not having seen the little bugger sooner but I never would have even thought to look for a tick,” Lewis wrote. “It’s crazy that a little bug can do this!”
Most tick bites are harmless and don’t need medical treatment. But some ticks (like the deer tick, wood tick, and others) can carry harmful germs that cause diseases like Rocky Mountain spotted fever and Lyme disease. The deer tick is tiny, no larger than a pencil point. Other ticks are larger and easier to find on the skin.
How Do I Remove a Tick?
It’s important to remove a tick as soon as possible. Follow these steps:
- Use tweezers to grasp the tick firmly at its head or mouth, next to the skin.
- Pull firmly and steadily until the tick lets go of the skin. Do not twist the tick or rock it from side to side. If part of the tick stays in the skin, don’t worry. It will eventually come out on its own.
- Release the tick into a jar or zip-locked bag in case you want to have it identified later on.
- Wash your hands and the site of the bite with soap and water.
- Swab the bite site with alcohol.
Never use petroleum jelly or a hot match to kill and remove a tick. These methods don’t get the tick off the skin, and can cause it to burrow deeper and release more saliva (which increases the chances of disease transmission).