Treatments I Have Tried
Im sure theres more that Ive overlooked, but the point is, Ive tried it all. Ive seen at least 20 doctors or specialists , and had more testing than I care to remember.
I know which treatments produced awful results for me, and I know which ones seemed to soothe my symptoms, but the thing isI also know people who reacted in the complete opposite way!
Every case is different. Some struggle with neuropathy, others with mental disorders. Lyme can attack a different area in each person. You may have heart, adrenal, or neurological issues depending on your case.
Co-infections are common, and complicate things even further.
Im slowly learning what my body needs and I can confidently say my flareups are much simpler to handle than they used to be.
I wish I had your formula, but I dont. Instead I have some advice that I think can help anyone dealing with this disease to press forward and see a glimpse of hope.
Living With Lyme Disease
Once antibiotics resolve the infection, you can support your recovery from Lyme disease as you would with any kind of arthritis or nerve injury. It is recommended that you:
- Eata healthy diet and limit your sugar intake.
- Getplenty of rest.
- Exerciseat least three times a week for at least 30 minutes each day.
- Useanti-inflammatory medication when necessary.
The damageLyme disease causes to your nerves or muscles would heal over a course ofmonths, Dr. Sullivan says. Identifying the infection and treating itappropriately so that the infection is cleared is the first step. And then thebody can start to heal.
What Should You Do If You Find A Tick
Don’t touch the tick with your bare hand.
Use a pair of tweezers to remove the tick. Grab the tick firmly by its mouth or head as close to your skin as possible.
Pull up slowly and steadily without twisting until it lets go. Don’t squeeze the tick, and don’t use petroleum jelly, solvents, knives, or a lit match to kill the tick.
Save the tick. Place it in a plastic container or bag so it can be tested for disease, if needed.
Wash the bite area well with soap and water and put an antiseptic lotion or cream on the site.
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Invest In Essential Oils
Because the only true treatment for Lyme disease is oral or intravenous antibiotics, theres been lots of research on alternative medicine. Essential oils are just one of many alternative treatment options. These oils can be diffused, added to bath water, placed under the tongue, or used as nasal spray. While theres no real medical or scientific research backing this treatment, many Lyme patients have tried essential oils and experienced relief.
Consult A Veterinarian For Critical Lyme Disease Effects
If you are consulting a veterinarian, then provide him/her with the full medical history of your dog. Besides this, inform the veterinarian about the organs which are affected by Lyme disease. If the veterinarian deems it necessary, then he/she would recommend some blood tests along with a complete blood cell count. Urinalysis, fecal examinations, and serology are some more tests which your dog might have to go through.
The veterinarian may draw fluid from the affected joints of your dog and test it afterward. The vet may conduct a test to check whether Lyme disease has caused arthritis in your dog or not. You may need to do an X-ray of the painful joints in your dogs body to analyze bones for abnormalities. If the veterinarian prescribes, then give topical and oral medicines to kill or repel ticks that have moved its way into your dogs body. Though these antibiotics hardly have any side effect, its always preferred to let the veterinarian administer the daily dose of the antibiotics.So, give special attention to your dog and take adequate precautionary measures as discussed in this article. If you have gone through the article thoroughly, then you wont have further difficulties in treating Lyme disease. Therefore, now its time to say that your dog can live a long and happy life even after contracting Lyme disease and with the right care and treatment.
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Lifestyle Changes With Lyme Disease: How To Best Adapt
Lyme disease is much more complicated than its physical symptoms. While they can be debilitating, other areas of your life are also affected, forcing you to make lifestyle changes. Depending on how long you have been dealing with Lyme, the more significant the impact on your whole life.
You may be realizing that you must adapt your way of living. You must learn to live your life with Lyme disease. Doing so means making big changes in your career, personal relationships, and even how you have fun.
Below are suggestions that can help you make changes to adapt to life with a Lyme disease diagnosis.
What Are Symptoms Of Lyme Disease
Symptoms in the beginning stages of Lyme disease include headaches, stiff neck, swollen joints, depression, anxiety, fever, and flu-like symptoms. In the second and third stages of Lyme disease, these symptoms worsen. A person may also experience facial paralysis, heart palpitations, dizziness, shooting pains in limbs, nerve pain, and spinal cord and brain inflammation.
Unless a person notices a bullseye rash at the time of the tick bite, Lyme disease often goes misdiagnosed or not diagnosed at all.
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What Happens At Your Appointment
The GP will ask about your symptoms and consider any rash or recent tick bites you know about.
Lyme disease can be difficult to diagnose. It has similar symptoms to other conditions and there’s not always an obvious rash.
2 types of blood test are available to help confirm or rule out Lyme disease. But these tests are not always accurate in the early stages of the disease.
You may need to be retested if you still have Lyme disease symptoms after a negative result.
My Battle With Lyme Disease
Reading into the symptoms of long-term Lyme, I was probably already infected at the age of about 15. I had a very similar infection at that age. I was playing squash for North Wales 10-12 times a week at that time. Suddenly, I found myself unable to even to pick up a racket because of fatigue. I think it has continued since then. So, potentially, I could have been living with Lyme disease for 35 years.
I have had many tests done here in the UK, all of which came back negative. However, as desperate as I was, I decided to pay privately and have a German test done. It came back positive. Germans are far more advanced in the understanding of Lyme disease than we currently are, having dealt with it on a much larger scale for many years.
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This Is What It’s Like To Live With Lyme Disease
Comedian Tori Piskin talks about how Lyme totally changed her life â and what she’s done to fight it.
In 2018 alone, more than 33,000 people had confirmed cases of Lyme disease in the United States. It’s not quite uncommon, but the tick-borne illness is notoriously difficult to diagnose. In fact, many people don’t even know they have Lyme disease until their symptoms are so severe they have no choice to seek treatment.
For some lucky ones, Lyme is treated with a round of antibiotics. However, according to the Lyme and Tick-Borne Diseases Research Center at Columbia University Irvine Medical Center, anywhere from 5% to 20% of patients with Lyme disease go on to have chronic symptoms. Those odds become higher the longer an infection goes undiagnosed.
For its Diagnosis Diaries series, Bustle spoke with New-York-based comedian Tori Piskin, who has been living with chronic Lyme since her senior year in college, to understand why getting a diagnosis for Lyme is anything but a direct line.
“In my senior year of college, I was having blurry vision, and I was sleeping 14 hours a day,” Piskin explains. “It felt like the devil was inside of me. Something was just off. I remember getting the diagnosis, and I told my friend, ‘It’s Lyme disease!’ She was like, ‘My dad had it four times! You’ll be fine!’ And I just keep playing that in my head over and over again because it was really never fine again.”
A Long Journey Of Pain And Misdiagnosis
Tait estimates that she had Lyme for about 15 years before she was diagnosed. She thinks she was bitten by a tick as a teen in Californias Bay Area, where she grew up. In high school, she was a dancer. Suddenly she was getting injured more than usual joints coming out of their sockets and ligaments tearing after doing normal routines. During class, she was exhausted and having trouble concentrating. Her grades started to slip.
Looking back, its now clear I was neurologically starting to not be myself, she said. But when youre a teenager, a lot of it is just attributed to, Youre a teenager!
Tait, who was thin with a bubbly personality, recalled one doctor telling her she was too pretty to be sick.
Eventually she was diagnosed with depression and prescribed an antidepressant.
In college, Tait started to experience seizures and was diagnosed with epilepsy.
My fatigue was getting worse, she said. I was dropping out of classes left and right and I would get sick constantly. Thats where this weird sort of self-fulfilling prophecy came in: I was depressed. But I wasnt sick because I was depressed. I was depressed because I was sick.
But once they put epilepsy down , at least I had turned a corner where they had a label on something, Tait continued. Then would just add things You have fibromyalgia and you probably also have chronic fatigue syndrome. But they didnt tell me how to fix it. Everything was, Try antidepressants because we dont really know.
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Lyme Disease Frequently Asked Questions
If you have not done so already, remove the tick with fine-tipped tweezers.
The chances that you might get Lyme disease from a single tick bite depend on the type of tick, where you acquired it, and how long it was attached to you. Many types of ticks bite people in the U.S., but only blacklegged ticks transmit the bacteria that cause Lyme disease. Furthermore, only blacklegged ticks in the highly endemic areas of the northeastern and north central U.S. are commonly infected. Finally, blacklegged ticks need to be attached for at least 24 hours before they can transmit Lyme disease. This is why its so important to remove them promptly and to check your body daily for ticks if you live in an endemic area.
If you develop illness within a few weeks of a tick bite, see your health care provider right away. Common symptoms of Lyme disease include a rash, fever, body aches, facial paralysis, and arthritis. Ticks can also transmit other diseases, so its important to be alert for any illness that follows a tick bite.
Moody KD, Barthold SW, 1991. Relative infectivity of Borrelia burgdorferi in Lewis rats by various routes of inoculation.external iconAm J Trop Med Hyg 44: 135-9.
There are no reports of Lyme disease being spread to infants through breast milk. If you are diagnosed with Lyme disease and are also breastfeeding, make sure that your doctor knows this so that he or she can prescribe an antibiotic thats safe for use when breastfeeding.
Serious Complications Of Lyme Disease
Lyme arthritis was the first recognized symptom of Lyme Disease the fact that a whole bunch of kids in Lyme, Connecticut ended up with it was what led to the discovery of Lyme Disease as a tick-borne infection in the 1970s. It’s a Stage 3 manifestation resulting from Lyme Disease going untreated, and if you have it, you may experience chronic or recurrent bouts of joint swelling and pain in a few large joints, such as the knees. Your range of motion may be limited, painful, or both, enough so that you are unable to work. Managed with antibiotics, around 60 percent of patients with untreated Lyme Disease go on to develop Lyme arthritis.
Acrodermatitis chronicum atrophicans, also sometimes called Herxheimer disease, is a serious dermatological condition associated with late disseminated Lyme Disease. A progressive condition, ACA eventually results in widespread skin atrophy and neuropathic pain. Initially, the affected area of skin will likely have a blue hue a sign to see a doctor.
Late Lyme encephalopathy is one of the scarier aspects of late-stage Lyme Disease. Encephalopathy itself is a general term for brain damage, and is often associated with kidney failure or cirrhosis. It can lead to a wide variety of symptoms, including :
- Memory loss
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Lyme Disease And Mental Illness
This is all frightening information. Remember that most people with Lyme disease dont experience mental health complications. However, if you begin experiencing mood swings or mental health symptoms that are uncharacteristic for you, speak with your healthcare provider immediately. In addition, try to find a practitioner that specializes in Lyme disease and therefore has a more nuanced understanding of your symptoms.
You might consider talking to a trusted loved one about the mental and emotional effects of Lyme disease. That person can help you know when you might be experiencing these symptoms, and can help connect you with help.
Finally, whether or not youre experiencing mental health symptoms, living with Lyme disease can be emotionally taxing. Online support groups can connect you with other people living with Lyme disease who will understand your challenges and be able to share what has worked for them.
How Stephanie Got Answers
About four years ago, Tait started to suspect she had Lyme disease. A family friend had Lyme, and Tait recognized some of her own symptoms appearing in her friend. She asked her doctor for an ELISA, an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, or a blood test thats typically the first way doctors test patients who may have Lyme disease. When she learned her insurance wouldnt cover the cost, she paid for the test out of pocket. It came back negative.
Tait, however, wasnt convinced. She asked for another test, but she said the doctor refused. So she turned to a private lab for a second test, this one a Western Blot, which doctors typically turn to next, to verify a positive ELISA result. That test was positive for the Lyme antibodies.
I sobbed, because there it was in my hands that I wasnt just jumping to conclusions, Tait said. I walked back into my doctors office and said, Here it is. They said, Well, we didnt do this test, so how do we know? I said, Youve got to be kidding me. I have a lab test!
Tait started getting treatment at a private clinic in Idaho that specializes in treating Lyme disease, about a six-hour drive from where she lives.
Lyme disease is typically treated with antibiotics, and when treated early, people with Lyme usually recover completely. Taits treatment plan included antibiotics, immunotherapy, various supplements as well as dietary changes. But because she had been sick for so long, some of her health problems were irreversible.
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How To Avoid Tick Bites
To reduce the chance of being bitten:
- cover your skin while walking outdoors and tuck your trousers into your socks
- use insect repellent on your clothes and skin products containing DEET are best
- stay on clear paths whenever possible
- wear light-coloured clothing so ticks are easier to see and brush off
What If Ive Had Lyme Disease For Years
If Lyme disease is not diagnosed and treated early, the spirochetes can spread and may go into hiding in different parts of the body. Weeks, months or even years later, patients may develop problems with the brain and nervous system, muscles and joints, heart and circulation, digestion, reproductive system, and skin.
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Who Gets Lyme Disease
Anyone bitten by an infected deer tick can get Lyme disease. Most U.S. cases of Lyme disease happen in Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, and Wisconsin. But Lyme disease is found in other parts of the world, too.
Besides living in one of these areas, other things that might increase your risk include:
- spending a lot of time outdoors in tall grass, brush, shrubs, or wooded areas
- having pets that may carry ticks indoors
- activities such as yardwork, hiking, camping, fishing, or hunting in tick-infested areas
Can You Live A Normal Life With Lyme Disease
What do patients say?
Fontaine, a Lyme warrior, says the following: Yes, for the most part. But Lyme is a chronic, degenerative condition a multisystem inflammatory attack that must be intermittently battled on myriad fronts. There will be times of normality and times of distress. Peaks and valleys. Its critically important, then, that you guard your well-being and take good care of your body. Prioritize this and dont feel self-indulgent.
Another Lyme patient said: Think of food as medicine. Become better-informed in this regard, and always be mindful of what you eat. Poor diet, stress and a sedentary lifestyle can wreak havoc. And being attentive to mental health is every bit as important. Be kind to yourself and try to cultivate patience. Attitude and emotions color everything.
Andrea, who has been battling Lyme for over a decade, says: Chronic illness can be highly inconsistent symptoms-wise. Symptoms also vary from patient to patient and therefore can be additionally stressful. Recognizing this will help you move through difficult episodes and forward on your path to healing. I have started writing a blog to track and share my experience. That way I can inform, comfort, and help other Lymies in the online community. I also know of many that keep a private journal, which may be therapeutic in your case. I think, above all, its important not to isolate yourself.
Originally posted 2018-05-04 13:43:34.
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