SPOKANE, Wash. -Tick season is shaping up to be a bad one, and one Spokane woman wants to warn people of the diseases these bugs carry. That’s because Mary Grayce Hart has been dealing with chronic Lyme disease for the past 11 years.
“It’s debilitating. I suffer with chronic pain. I feel sick a lot. Just general not feeling well,” she says.
She was diagnosed with Lyme disease approximately a year after she started exhibiting symptoms and she had to drop out of college because of it.
“I don’t think like I used to. I trip over words,” she says. “It wreaked havoc with my life.”
May is Lyme Disease Awareness Month, so Mary Grayce has been posting each day about how her life changed after she got the disease. She thinks she contracted it during a summer in Minnesota.
But as she scrolled through Facebook, she saw a post that alarmed her. It was a video of a woman putting peppermint oil on a tick, and the tick squirming out. Mary Grayce says doing that could be very dangerous.
“The tick can actually vomit into your body, or spit in there,” she says. That means there’s a chance you could get whatever disease the tick is carrying.
“I just want people to be aware and not deal with this like I have,” she says.
Health officials say wear light colored clothing to see the ticks better, and use insect repellent. One viewer suggested Sawyers repellent for ticks, but there are also other options.
Here’s an article from the Centers for Disease Control on natural tick repellents: https://www.cdc.gov/lyme/prev/natural-repellents.html