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Don’t Let a Tick Bite Ruin Your Summer: How Ontario Pharmacists Can Help with Tick Bites and Lyme Disease

You return home after enjoying the great weather in the spring and summer, and suddenly, you notice a brown/black small, round bug that is the size of a sesame seed attached to your skin. You contact your doctor’s office, but they are fully booked and the wait time for walk-in patients is very long. What do you do?

This is where a Pharmasave Pharmacist can step in to help!

Did you know tick bites can affect humans too, not just pets?

Ticks are small, blood-sucking arachnids that typically thrive during the spring and summer seasons. Tick bites are a concern because ticks can carry diseases, such as Lyme disease, which can be transmitted to humans through their bites and result in serious health problems if not properly diagnosed and treated.

What is Lyme disease?

Lyme disease is a bacterial infection that is transmitted to humans through tick bites. Symptoms of Lyme disease can vary, but a patient may commonly experience1:

  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Muscle Aches
  • Joint Pain.
  • A rash that looks like a bullseye (usually 5 cm across).

How can you prevent Tick Bites?

Here are some tips for preventing tick bites2:

  • Wear light-colored clothing to make it easier to spot ticks.
  • Wear long-sleeved shirts and pants, and tuck your pants into your socks or boots.
  • Use insect repellent containing DEET or Picaridin (e.g., ‘OFF! Deep Woods’ Bug Spray).
  • Check yourself, your family, and pets for ticks after spending time outdoors. Pay special attention to hard-to-see areas such as the groin, armpits, and scalp.

I have been bitten by a tick… What can I do?

If you do get bitten by a tick, it is important to remove it as soon as possible.

If the tick has been attached for less than 24 hours, the risk of Lyme disease is low2. Early removal is crucial as the tick must be attached for 36 to 48 hours or more before the Lyme disease bacterium can be transmitted. Although it can be tempting to remove a tick as soon as you see it, it is important to follow appropriate steps to prevent harming yourself and ensure that the entire tick is removed with no parts left behind.

Contacting your local Pharmasave pharmacy may be an option for appropriate assessment and care.

How can a pharmacist help with a tick bite?

If you think you have been bitten by a tick, call your local Pharmasave pharmacist to schedule an in-person or virtual appointment. During the appointment, your pharmacist will assess whether you had a tick bite and ensure you do not have any signs and symptoms that need a referral to a doctor or another healthcare provider. The pharmacist can also show you how to remove the tick from your skin appropriately and will assess whether antibiotics are needed for treatment.

What medications can my Pharmasave pharmacist prescribe to prevent Lyme Disease?

Pharmasave pharmacists can evaluate your circumstances and discuss the pros and cons of prescribing antibiotic treatment as a preventative measure for Lyme disease. But no need to worry if you don’t receive antibiotics immediately after a tick bite! The pharmacist will monitor your status and recommend seeing a doctor if there is onset of any signs or symptoms of Lyme disease within 30 days2, making sure you have the right treatment for your needs!

In addition to treating Lyme disease, pharmacists can assess and prescribe medications for other common health conditions such as cold and flu symptoms, allergies, and skin conditions. This is an efficient option for accessing care when you need it most.

Don’t let a tick bite ruin your outdoor fun – call your Pharmasave pharmacist for help!


If you’re curious about other health conditions that pharmacists can assess and prescribe for, visit Common Ailments in Ontario for details.



  1. Canada PHA of. Lyme disease: Symptoms and treatment [Internet]. 2015 [cited 2023 May 26]. Available from:
  2. CPS [Internet]. [cited 2023 May 26]. Available from:

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