PROSPECT, Conn. (WTNH) — Mild winters like the one we’re experiencing may be pleasant to some but there is a downside, as ticks become more active in the warmer temperatures.

“Usually when it’s below freezing they can become dormant and then they can come back into effect when spring begins,” Dr. William McQueen with ProHealth Physicians said.

In a mild winter, you can still come across ticks, especially if you spend time outdoors doing things like hiking.

Tick bites can be dangerous or life-altering for some people.

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“It’s possible they can spread disease such as Lyme disease and there are some other infectious diseases that can be associated with them,” Dr. McQueen said.

Lyme disease is a bacterial infection most commonly spread through ticks, mosquitoes or flea bites. In the last two decades, cases of Lyme disease in the U.S. have tripled, according to

If left untreated the infection can spread to the joint, heart or nervous system, according to the CDC.

Dr. McQueen recommends seeking medical attention if you think you have been bitten by a tick. The bullseye rash is a telltale symptom of Lyme Disease. Other symptoms include developing a fever, muscle pain, joint pain, or general malaise.

If antibiotics are given soon after the infection begins Dr. McQueen says Lyme disease is easily treatable, but that is not always the case.

“The problems tend to come from the Lyme disease not being diagnosed in the beginning or not being recognized,” Dr. McQueen said.

Protecting yourself if you know you’re going to be outdoors is important, especially if you’re going to be in the woods. Using insect repellent, checking for ticks frequently and removing them in a timely fashion are the key steps to avoid being infected.