If one is traveling to an area for vacation that has a high rate of tick borne mosquito disease is it a good idea to take antibiotics as a preventive measure? If you get a tick bite should you always go to the dr or just if you get the red rings? Do ticks in this area carry Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever?
International travelers to countries known to have yellow fever should be, and in many cases are required to be, vaccinated. Similarly, preventive antibiotics is recommended for individuals traveling internationally to countries known to have malaria. To my knowledge, there are no similar recommendations for tickborne diseases or other mosquito borne diseases and antibiotics are not recommended on a preventive basis in other situations (for example, travel within the U.S.). However, it is very important to always use the following measures whenever you may be exposed to mosquitos or ticks: dressing properly, wearing insect repellent, conducting frequent and thorough tick checks, and watching for signs and symptoms of disease.
As I mentioned in previous answers, not everyone develops the characteristic rash associated with Lyme disease. Other early symptoms to watch for include fever, chills, fatigue, headache, muscle and joint aches, and swollen lymph nodes. Anyone experiencing these symptoms, with or without the rash described above, should consult their health care provider.
In Fairfax County, we do have the tick that transmits Rocky Mountain spotted fever, but we haven’t found the bacteria that causes this disease in the thousands of ticks that we have examined in the last 3 years.