"...It's the person who never saw the tick who is most likely to get the disease..."
"...the best way to keep ticks off the body is to wear long sleeved clothing, tuck pants into socks, and apply insect repellent..."
Just two phrases that striked me the most in this article. Indeed I think that the best thing to do about Lyme's disease is to increase awareness to the people most likely to get a tick byte. I think this is more effective than increasing awareness under house doctors. That doesn't mean though that doctors should not have more knowledge of the disease. All I'm saying is that since the first 24 hours are so important it is also very important that people likely to get bitten know what to do.
As for myself, I get bitten by ticks a lot when I'm hiking. Usually a two weeks hike will leave me with about 50 bytes. Which I agree is a lot, but since I am very much aware of them common practice is to check myself regularly during the day as well as upon arrival in camp.
Which brings me to the practice of tucking clothes in your socks. I have found ticks between my toes while wearing shoes and sock and I've found them in my privates. Therefore I don't think that tucking your clothes will matter much as they are perfectly able to crawl to wherever they can find a warm and cosy spot to byte. Then again, I like to hike in hiking shorts whereas my hiking partners hike in trousers and they usually have much less than I do.
As one poster said ticks are spiders (they have 8 legs which make them arachnids, the only fact missed in this well written article) and I always thought that DEET only works on insects (which have 6 legs). So since ticks have two legs too much to be insect, does DEET actually work? The way I know of DEET to be effective is that it basically disorientates and insect that tries to come near humans by sense of smell. Since the tick does not rely on smell but on touch I don't think DEET will be very effective when the tick has already fallen on you. I did however once have a camp in Scotland where an army of ticks was crawling my direction and I'm sure that the big one was pointing its legs to me. Was he trying to feel my vibrations or trying to sense my scent?
Permethrine I will definitively try, although it is illegal in my country.
Finally, I'd like to add that after a feed-the-local-tick-population hike I keep a close eye on my body, knowing that the chances of Lyme are very low since I think I catch 99% of the ticks within the 24 hours; as well as visiting my doctor for an blood exam. Lyme has been verified and has been treated effectively with doxycyline. So far I've been lucky and I feel healthy, however there's always a very little bit of fear that my Lyme might pop-up many years from now, because I've read that even after treatment it can lie dormant in your body to manifest many years later, but that might be a popular myth. Who knows?
Eins, is happy that the last two winters in NW Europe have been cold, killing many ticks.