Grasping a tick with tweezers where its mouth meets a person's skin usually removes it from the human body, according to Mayo Clinic. Do not remove ticks with rubbing alcohol, fingernail polish, petroleum jelly or a cigarette lighter. These methods may not remove the tick completely.
Once the tick is removed, wash the area with soap and water. Apply an antibiotic ointment and a bandage, suggests WebMD.
If a fever, infection or a bull's-eye rash develops in a patient after removing a tick, contact a doctor immediately, according to Mayo Clinic. Also contact a doctor if some of the tick remains embedded in the skin because this can be a cause of further infection.
While most ticks are harmless to people, others can make people sick because of the bacteria they carry. Rocky Mountain spotted fever and Lyme disease are two well-known diseases caused by ticks, according to Mayo Clinic.
Prevent tick bites by keeping grass cut short around the house, treating the yards for ticks, or building barriers to keep away deer, which often carry deer ticks, according to WebMD. Using an insect repellent containing DEET also keeps ticks away from people, while wearing long pants, socks and a long-sleeve shirt outside makes a tick bite unlikely because bare skin is not exposed.