The Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says reported cases of Lyme disease reached an all-time high in the state last year.
The agency says the total of 1,464 cases surpassed the previous high of 1,410 in 2014. The Portland Press Herald reports Lyme cases surged in the fall after a dry summer caused ticks to take on a hibernation-like state.
Cases had been below five-year averages through July.
Meanwhile, public health authorities say ticks should be out this week because weather is starting to warm up. Lyme disease symptoms include fatigue, dizziness and joint and nerve pain.
Lyme can be treated with antibiotics. Some people get a "bulls-eye" rash indicating the disease, but not everyone who contracts Lyme disease will have the rash.
The Maine CDC has previously recommended using caution outdoors by:
• Wearing long-sleeved shirts and pants, or clothing treated with permethrin
• Using an EPA-approved repellent
• Performing daily tick checks: pay special attention to warm protected areas like the nape of the neck, armpits, groin area, and behind the knees.