Should I Dive Into The Full Dose Of A New Protocol
Because theres no one-size-fits-all protocol, the way you incorporate natural therapies into your treatment protocol might be different from how someone else does it. While some people may be able to jump right away to full doses of an herb or supplement, others will have to work up slowly both of which are perfectly fine.
Here are a few things to try, depending on your particular circumstances:
- If you find that you need to lessen the pace a bit, try adding in a new herb or supplement every two or three days, as opposed to daily.
- If you cant tolerate a particular herb, or you experience an uncomfortable herx, back off for a while and consider detoxing or taking a break for a few days.
- Try to resist the unspoken pressure that patients can sometimes feel when one person is moving through a protocol at a faster pace than others might be. Whats right for you is your best way to achieve recovery.
- As you learn to listen to your body and work with it, you might find that as you get stronger, youre able to increase your dosages or add in herbs that you couldnt tolerate previously.
Testing Beyond The Lab
Certain types of symptoms require evaluation by diagnostic procedures conducted by specialists in their respective fields. These symptoms include:
- Neurological symptoms: Severe neurological symptoms are evaluated with a nerve conduction test and MRI of the brain to assess the nervous system. The purpose is ruling out multiple sclerosis.
- Cardiac symptoms: Heart symptoms like chest pain and irregular heartbeat are evaluated by EKG and Holter monitor . Findings may lead to cardiac catheterization.
- GI symptoms: Stomach pain and symptoms are often evaluated by an upper endoscopy. Lower intestinal and colon symptoms are evaluated by colonoscopy. Routine colon cancer screening with colonoscopy is recommended every 10 years for everyone over 50.
Is The Restore Kit Right For Me
There are a huge variety of different methylation variations, some more concerning than others. In addition, it seems that people with the same mutation are often affected variably. The Restore Kit formulas contain B vitamins and other methyl donors to provide support for the needs of most people with methylation concerns.*
The Restore Kit uses bioavailable forms of vitamins in its supplements, which means that they are better absorbed and utilized by the body. Many other vitamin products on the market contain cheaper vitamin substances that can actually worsen methylation concerns.
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Are Antibiotics The Answer For Chronic Lyme
The experts at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention do not actually recognize the term chronic Lyme disease. Instead, they classify persistent Lyme-like symptoms occurring beyond six months as Post-Treatment Lyme Disease Syndrome . The authors of the text state that PTLDS only occurs in a very small percentage of people and generally resolves spontaneously. Extended antibiotic therapy is not recommended.
Experts at the opposite end of the spectrum who do recognize chronic Lyme disease recommend extended therapy with potent antibiotics.
People suffering from chronic Lyme disease end up getting caught in the middle.
Even though most of the world accepts that chronic Lyme disease exists, at present, there is no evidence that prolonged antibiotic therapy offers long-term benefit. Some people do improve while on antibiotic therapy , but typically relapse when antibiotics are stopped.
This isnt surprising. If you study the true nature of Borrelia, aggressive and prolonged antibiotic therapy just doesnt make any sense.
The more you see chronic Lyme disease as an infection with specific microbes that must be completely eradicated to win the war, the less likely you are to ultimately prevail.
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Lyme disease can affect several systems of the body the brain, nervous system, joints, heart, and more.
The list of symptoms infected individuals can experience is expansive and varies from person to person.
Its one of the reasons a Lyme disease diagnosis may be controversial.
Yet, one thing everyone seems to agree on about the tick-borne disease is that it can significantly impact the nervous system, especially without prompt treatment in the early stages of the infection.
Unfortunately, Lyme often goes missed early on. The telltale sign of a Lyme infection an erythema migrans rash, or the classic bulls-eye rash doesnt occur in every case. .
And the initial symptoms of infection may be nothing more than fever, chills, headache, fatigue, or muscle aches, making them easy to miss or brush off as a case of the flu.
But as the disease advances, the bacteria associated with Lyme, Borrelia burgdorferi, spreads via the bloodstream to other parts of the body, a process known as dissemination. This occurs in the days and weeks following infection, referred to as early disseminated Lyme disease.
If an infection goes untreated for months to years, however, theres a good chance the infection will proceed to late stage or late disseminated Lyme disease, sometimes called chronic Lyme disease. Thats when the nervous system can become involved, and symptoms ratchet up to a whole new level.
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Option 2 Supplement And Prescriptions:
In my experience, this prescription antibiotic-based option has a 10 percent better chance of working than the supplement-only option above. For best results use the two prescription medicines and the supplements at the same time. Note: This option is also a full Lyme infection support and treatment.
- Clarithromycin 500 mg 1 pill 2 times a day. AND
- Rifabutin 150 mg 2 times a day or 2 pills 1 time a day or Rifampin 300 mg 2 pills 1 time a day. AND
- Liposomal Cinnamon, Clove, and Oregano Oil Combination 1 pill 2 times a day.
Understanding The Different Types Of Lyme Disease: Acute Vs Chronic
Because of Dr. Rawls experience with untreated Lyme disease flaring up after decades of dormancy, he views chronic Lyme disease and all chronic conditions differently than many other physicians and patients. He sees chronic disease as largely a result of immune dysfunction, which can be triggered by a number of different factors. There are thousands upon thousands of chronic illnesses, but when you look at the symptoms, they all bunch together, so the concept of a diagnosis is often a little artificial.
To understand how this works, Dr. Rawls says you must also understand that there are two types of Lyme disease, acute and chronic. Acute Lyme disease occurs when the Lyme microbe first comes into your body: You get a tick bite, the microbe enters your system, and theres an acute tug-of-war between your immune system and the microbe because youve never seen it before, he explains. This internal tug-of-war happens within weeks of getting a tick bite and is accompanied by symptoms like fatigue, stiff neck, mild fever, and aches and pains. Eventually, either the microbe wins or the immune system wins, and your body reaches a place of resolution.
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Common Types Of Testing For Microbes
Testing is getting better, and there are a variety of different ways to test, but none of them are anywhere near 100% accurate. Testing is mostly useful for diagnosing acute illness. This is especially true when symptoms of illness suggest infection with a higher virulence microbe that might respond to acute treatment with antibiotics. New innovations may gradually improve testing for chronic illness associated with stealth microbes.
Borrelia The Misunderstood Microbe
Retrospectively, I may have harbored Borrelia burgdorferi for years before I actually developed symptoms. Im an outdoor person tick bites have always been a common affair.
Its not uncommon for people to harbor Borrelia and not know it stealth is this microbes middle name.
Lyme disease is mostly transmitted by nymphal ticks, which are about the size of the pin. They bite, transmit the microbe, and then drop off most people arent even aware of being bitten. Because symptoms of the initial infection are so mild , its not uncommon for people to be completely unaware of being infected.
And Borrelia isnt the only microbe to worry about. Ticks carry many microbes that have similar characteristics to Borrelia. What they all have in common is stealthy characteristics that make them hard to find and even harder to get rid of.
If immune system function is robust, a person can harbor these types of microbes indefinitely, keeping them in check without ever having symptoms. When illness does occur, its typically chronic and debilitating, but not life-threatening. Additionally, the degree of chronic illness is highly variable. Some people are severely debilitated, while others are only marginally miserable.
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Reasons To Choose Herbs
Plants have to deal with a wide range of microbes, including bacteria, viruses, protozoa, and fungi, just like any other living creature. Not having an immune system, plants deal with the problem by producing a sophisticated spectrum of biochemical substances called phytochemicals. Instead of one chemical, like an antibiotic, a medicinal herb contains hundreds of phytochemicals that suppress microbes in different ways therefore resistance is almost unheard of, even with very long-term use. Some herbs provide more potent antimicrobial properties than others. While herbs would never be a good choice for treating a life-threatening illness like pneumonia, they are perfect for suppressing stealth microbes associated with chronic illness.
Different herbs offer a slightly different range of benefits, therefore multiple herbs can be used together to cover for all possible stealth microbes involved. In fact, this is the preferred way of doing herbal therapy . This provides for a wide spectrum of activity against a wide range of microbial threats. You can think of it as an orchestra of healing the sum of multiple herbs is more powerful than each herb individually.
Over the millennia, humans naturally selected certain plant substances for use as medicines. These plants, now known as medicinal herbs, have chemistry that meshes well with human biochemistry. Not surprisingly, medicinal herbs are well tolerated by most people and can be safely used for extended periods of time.
Chronic Lyme Disease Treatment Options: Antibiotics Vs Herbal Treatment For Lyme Disease
For Dr. Rawls, herbal therapy was the key to resolving his untreated Lyme and restoring his health. Because of his own personal experience and the research and science behind herbal treatment for Lyme disease, he believes that it is one of the most effective ways to treat chronic Lyme and other chronic conditions. Still, hes careful to point out that there is a time and place for herbal therapy and a time and place for antibiotics.
Sometimes people look at herbs and drugs as things that we can substitute one for another, but they really act totally differently, he says. Each one serves a different role, and what it ultimately comes down to is the different types of Lyme disease. For acute Lyme, Dr. Rawls says that antibiotics are often a better choice than herbal therapy. What were doing there is knocking down the microbes enough that it helps the immune system get a better grasp of that situation, he says. So I do advocate antibiotics for acute Lyme disease.
But things are different with chronic Lyme disease. Dr. Rawls says that many conventional physicians believe that the answer to chronic Lyme disease is a long-term course of powerful antibiotics were talking six months to a year and while this can sometimes work, it usually doesnt, and can come with some serious health consequences. Enter herbal treatment for Lyme disease.
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When Should I Make Dietary Changes
The foods you eat create a solid foundation for your body to access plenty of essential nutrients for nourishment and restoration. Therefore, dietary changes are an integral piece of any recovery process from Lyme.
And while theres never a wrong time to make healthy changes, the sooner you begin to implement small adjustments, the quicker youll see results in gut-related issues like leaky gut and irritable bowel syndrome. You may notice some systemic changes as well, such as better energy, fewer symptoms of Lyme brain or brain fog, and a decrease in whole-body aches and pains.
But choosing the best nutrient-dense diet can sometimes be overwhelming. In reality, many foods market themselves as health foods. So how do you know what to pick to feed and care for your body adequately?
Generally, finding the healthiest selection of foods at your supermarket is as easy as shopping the perimeter of the store. Thats where the freshest items and the ones with the purest ingredients are located think produce, lean meats, and healthy fats.
As you work to make changes, the majority of your diet should be plant-based foods, especially vegetables, says Dr. Rawls. Thats because vegetables contain nutrients to feed the beneficial flora of your gut, as well as fiber to help bind and vacate toxins.
Antibiotic Treatment For Acute Lyme Disease
During the first two weeks after a tick bite, there is an opportunity to reduce the concentration of microbes within the host using conventional antibiotics before the microbes disseminate deeper into tissues.
Healthcare professionals routinely recommend 100 mg of doxycycline taken twice daily for 2-3 weeks. Metronidazole , taken twice daily, can be added to cover for a wider range of possible coinfections.
Some providers prescribe clindamycin as an oral antibiotic treatment, which has a high association with overgrowth of Clostridium difficile in the gut . Clindamycin should only be used topically or intravenously.
Antibiotic therapy will not eliminate all of the microbes it just helps to give the immune system the upper hand. After the microbes have disseminated into tissues, antibiotic therapy is less likely to eradicate the infection.
Aside from antibiotics, a healthy immune system is essential for preventing chronic disease. At least half of people with an infected tick bite will develop fatigue and migrating arthritis within weeks to months after completing antibiotic therapy. Repeat antibiotics generally provide transient benefit or no benefit at all.
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Work With Your Physician
The recommendations listed on this page are not intended to replace an in-person consultation with your physician, and you should discuss all treatment options with your physician before you begin. If a bulls-eye rash is present, schedule an appointment with a physician immediately.
Fortunately, herbal therapy has very low potential for toxicity and is generally not shown to have any interference with conventional medications, so our physicians often use the two in conjunction .
The most important part of recovery is a long-term commitment. It may take many months to begin experiencing a change in health, but if you stay committed, better health is in reach.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
After graduating from medical school, Dr. Bill Rawls practiced conventional medicine for 15 years. However, when Lyme disease and fibromyalgia disrupted his career at age 45, he was forced into the world of herbal and alternative medicine. He has since restored his healthand has a passion to help others do the same. Read his story »
Creating The Perfect Environment For Healing
More than anything else, chronic Lyme disease is a breakdown of the bodys ability to fight off everyday threats and heal itself. It isnt as much the microbes themselves as it is that the microbes are no longer constrained by a strong immune system.
I had likely harbored Borrelia and other stealth microbes long before I got sick everyone harbors some stealth microbes in the grand mix of their microbiome. For me, years of rigorous night call, eating on the run, and other bad health habits weakened my immune system enough to allow the microbes to flourish.
Creating a healing environment within my body was essential for my recovery. Though herbs were essential for my recovery, I recognized that I also had to curb the habits that contributed to my immune dysfunction in the first place.
Even before starting herbal therapy, I had given up night call by necessity. Adequate restorative sleep is essential for overcoming any chronic illness. My sleep was so disrupted, however, that it took a lot of effort for me to restore normal sleep.
Poor eating habits and antibiotics had made a mess out of my intestinal tract. I also knew that I needed to make some drastic changes to my diet. Admittedly, it was a challenge at firstI grew up in the middle of the fast-food generation. But with time, eating healthy became the new norm. With a cleaner diet, all the digestive issues cleared, including leaky gut.
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Join Tbc United Cofounders Dr Jennifer Platt And Beth Carrison As They Discuss Holistic Health Options For Tick
When: Jan 28, 2021 07:00 PM Eastern Time
Dr. Rawls is an OB-GYN and leading expert in Lyme disease, integrative health, and herbal medicine. In the middle of his successful medical career, Dr. Rawls life was interrupted by Lyme disease. In his journey to overcome it, he explored nearly every treatment possible from conventional medicine to a range of alternative therapies.
In the more than 10 years since his recovery, Dr. Rawls has helped thousands of patients find their path to healing from Lyme disease and chronic illness.
He is the author of the best-selling book Unlocking Lyme, and Suffered Long Enough. He is also the Medical Director of RawlsMD.com and Vital Plan, an online holistic health company and Certified B Corporation®.
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