Of course, the best way to avoid getting sick from a tick bite is to avoid the bite to begin with. Preventative steps aren't foolproof, but they help. If you're spending time in an area known to harbor ticks, make sure you wear long pants and socks (contrary to popular myths, ticks don't fall on your head from treetops; instead, they crawl up your legs and make their way to dark warm spots, including your hairline, armpits, and groin). Use repellents that are effective against ticks—check this guide from the EPA on which work best, and for how long. Wear light clothing and shoes if possible, which makes it easier to spot the ticks. When you come in side, find a buddy and check each other thoroughly (or, if a buddy isn't available, check yourself using a mirror).