Lyme disease victim pushes tick prevention - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Lyme disease victim pushes tick prevention

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WAVERLY (KWWL) -

Spring is a good reminder tick season is here. With ticks come the threat of Lyme disease.

Last year, 194 cases were reported to the Iowa Department of Health. Experts say the best way to prevent tick bites is to avoid wooded and tall grassy areas.

Kris Brunkhorst is on high alert this time of year.

"Truly I went through hell," she said.

That's because Brunkhorst got Lyme disease 10 years ago.

She says she didn't necessarily see a tick, but they do spend a lot of time outside.

"I felt like I had the flu and it was really, really bad. Fevers where I would sweat so bad that I would have to change my pajamas and sheets, and then chills so bad that I would shake -- almost like a seizure," said Brunkhorst.

It took a long time for doctors to diagnose Brunkhorst with the disease.

All of this pain because of a small little tick. But Brunkhorst doesn't live in fear. And she has tips for others.

"Tuck your pant legs into your socks. Wear white socks if possible, so you can see the tick crawling up your socks. Do tick checks at the end of the day," said Brunkhorst. 

It's also important to avoid high grass and wear repellents that contain deet.

According to the Iowa Department of Public Health, the best and earliest sign of the infection is a rash that will appear within a few days at the site of the tick bite.

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