Mother of a 5-year-old warns about tick paralysis

Mum's parasite warning after daughter was left unable to walk

Mum's parasite warning after daughter was left unable to walk

In a post on Facebook, Griffen, of Grenada, Mississippi, said her daughter "couldn't walk".

Fortunately for Kailyn, she made a quick recovery and is now something of a social media star, Jessica's post having gotten tens of thousands of Facebook reactions and shares.

She said that her daughter went to bed "perfectly fine" the night before, but last Wednesday when she woke her up for daycare things took a "scary turn".

After testing, Kailyn was diagnosed with tick paralysis.

"PLEASE for the love of god check your kids for ticks!" she posted.

Tick paralysis is most commonly caused by the American dog tick and the Rocky Mountain wood tick, according to Columbia University's Lyme and Tick-Borne Diseases Research Center.

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Still, Griffin felt alarmed enough to post the warning. It's more common in children than it is adults! The reason? A tick bite.

More: Should I burn a tick off? Showering when you get home can wash away ticks that haven't attached yet and putting your clothes in a hot dryer will help to kill any ticks that may be caught in them. "We are being admitted to the hospital for observation and we're hoping her balance gets straightened out!" she wrote.

Paralysis begins in the legs, then spreads to the upper extremities. After the tick has been engorged for multiple days, paralysis usually starts in the lower limbs and works its way up the body, eventually affecting the respiratory system where it can become fatal. It can manifest as fatigue, numbness and an increasing inability to move, according to the foundation.

The little girl was immediately rushed to a hospital, where doctors confirmed that she'd been suffering from tick paralysis.

The best way to avoid tick bites that can cause disease is to avoid walking through or brushing against vegetation and perform daily self-examinations for ticks.

In Canada, tick species that can cause paralysis are found mostly in Southern British Columbia and Manitoba, but other species, like known Lyme-disease carriers blacklegged ticks, are aggressively expanding into new territory, even urban areas. Later that evening, Kailin was able to walk out of the hospital. Symptoms normally disappear when the tick is completely removed.

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