After Tick Removal

Photo by Malin Lundén Schmid

After Tick Removal

  • Wash your hands.
  • Consider photographing the tick and sending the photo to TickSpotters to ID the species.
  • If you do not save the tick, flush it down the toilet.
TickEncounter TickSpotter

Saving Ticks

  • Consider saving any ticks you remove in order to either send them to a lab to be identified and tested, or to keep them in case you develop any tick-borne diseases and want additional information about them at that point.
  • Use one of these methods:
  • Tape the tick securely to a card. Record the date and location of the bite on the card. Put the card in an airtight bag or container
  • Put the tick in a sealed container of alcohol.
  • Put the tick in a closed and labeled baggie in the freezer.
  • Record the date and location of tick bites in your calendar. Record the species of tick, if you know it. This information may be helpful to your doctor.

Tick Testing

  • The CDC strongly recommends against using tick test results to decide whether to use antibiotics after a tick bite. You can read more about why on their website. Nonetheless, having the ticks you remove tested can still provide you with useful information, such as:
  • The species of tick.
  • Disease-causing organisms and viruses that the tick may be carrying.
  • For more information about tick testing see:
  • Ticknology
  • TERC website
  • Save the Tick
  • Tick Report

Medical Care

  • Consider calling your healthcare provider for advice about prophylactic antibiotics. Do not delay, call as soon as possible.
  • The CDC recommends watching for the following symptoms of tick-borne disease for 30 days after tick bites:
  • Rash
  • Headache
  • Fever
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle pain
  • Joint swelling and pain