(CNN) –Summer is a great time to enjoy the outdoors, but medical experts say you need to be on the lookout for ticks.
As you head outside for the warm weather, keep Lyme disease prevention in mind. Although the illness is most prevalent in the Northeast, research has shown that the problem is spreading.
Ticks that carry Lyme disease are about the size of a poppy seed, so they can be tough to spot.
If you’ve been walking in the woods, though tall grass or even working in a garden, experts recommend conducting a full-body check afterwards.
They add that the best place to do that is in the bath or shower without the clothes that could be carrying ticks in them.
If you spot a tick under your skin, remove it with fine-tipped tweezers, pulling upward with steady pressure.
Be sure to get any parts of the tick that remain in the skin and then clean the bite area with rubbing alcohol or soap and water.
Early symptoms of the illness are similar to that of the flu; fever, chills, headache and joint aches.
If you think you have Lyme disease, go see a doctor who can prescribe antibiotics to treat it. A full recovery is likely if the illness is caught early.