Now that Memorial Day has ushered in the season of fun and sun, we must remind ourselves about the health hazards of the outdoor world. It’s time to be close to nature, but beware! When we visit woods and meadows, hiking trails, and hills, or even our own back yard, we can not avoid the abundant insect life. The Center for Natural and Integreated Medicine alerts you that the black legged tick can be infected with the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi . If such an infected tick bites you, Lyme Disease can be the unhappy result. This is Part I of a special series of blogs on Lyme Disease.
Typical symptoms listed by the CDC include
4. A specific, specialized skin rash, which resembles a bulls-eye target. This rashmay appear on one or more areas of the body. This is termed “erythema migrans.” Normally, it does not itch or burn, but it should not be ignored. Sometimes, there is no incidence of this unique rash, and the patient just progresses to the flu-like symptoms listed above.
1. Some patients might see the rash spread to other parts of the body.
2. Weeks or months after the bite, you might begin to experience joint pain and swelling, especially in your knees.
3. Neurological problems might develop weeks or months or, unbelievably, even years after the initial bite. As in meningitis, the membranes surrounding your brain might become inflamed.
4. Bell’s Palsy, might temporarily paralyze one side of your face.
5. You can even experience numbness or weakness in your limbs, and impaired muscle movement.
Serious Note: Without treatment, this infection can travel to joints, the heart, and the nervous system, as seen below.
These symptoms are not as common as the above, but are certainly elevated in their severity. Within weeks of the bite, patients develop may:
1. Heart problems, and perhaps an irregular heartbeat.
2. Eye inflammation.
3. Liver inflammation (hepatitis).
4. Severe fatigue.
If you’ve been bitten by a tick and experience symptoms, it is very important to report to your doctor. Just because the signs and symptoms suddenly disappear does not mean you are safe. Untreated, Lyme disease can rule your life for months and years, causing arthritis and other nervous system problems. Webmd.com has information on arthritis often connected with Lyme Disease.
At the Center for Natural and Integrated medicine, “we have effectively treated many patients with Lyme disease and its co-infections over the past ten years with good success.” This is due to the fact that we “personalize each treatment plan according to the unique needs of the individual. These needs varies since there is no “cookie-cutter approach.”
As you might already know, the treatment right after a bite usually is a course of antibiotics. The Lyme bacteria has a complex life cycle, and your recovery might necessitate more than one type of antibiotic or several courses of antibiotics.
Find out the details of long-term treatments and effective natural therapies at our special Lyme Disease Page. Do not suffer needlessly because you spent one fateful day in the woods, at the wrong time, wrong place, with the wrong bug. Call us. We can help. Watch this blog next week for additional timely information about Lyme Disease and its prevention.