Before I was diagnosed with it, I knew next to nothing about Lyme Disease. Turns out, though, that a large number of people contract Lyme per year, both in the United States and worldwide.
<Approaching the topic of disease is tough. There is a line where it just becomes anxiety-producing in the readers. It is my goal not to cross that line, as I myself came across a blog on Lyme written by a conspiracy theorist which caused great distress. I do not wish to bring more of that sort of junk to the internet. No glory is brought to Jesus from that anyway! I’m giving you, the reader, the open invitation to let me know if any aspect of this post, or future posts on the topic, is alarm-causing.>
To start at the beginning, there are two schools of thought:
#1 belongs to the Infectious Disease Society of America (IDSA)
They say Lyme Disease is hard to contract and easy to cure.
#2 belongs to the International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society (ILADS)
They say Lyme is easy to contract, hard to cure, and there is such a thing as chronic Lyme.
Personally, I know many people who have contracted Lyme and a few who have dealt with chronic Lyme. My doctor is also siding with the ILADS school of thought, therefore, there is bias speaking here (as if there was such a thing as no bias).
Borrelia Burgdorferi is what causes Lyme Disease. It is a corkscrew shaped bacteria. Getting bit by a tick that has been on you for 48 hours is the only confirmed way to contract this bacteria. For prevention then, staying away from ticks is highly recommended.
For treatment to occur, there needs to be a diagnosis. My doctor, Dr. Alisha Hollis, DO, has said, “Lyme is the great imitator.” Basically, people will get diagnosed with one of many other things instead of Lyme.
Here are a few of the symptoms that Lyme can bring about, and are actually ones I experienced:
- Joint pain
- Joint stiffness
- Muscle pain, cramps
- Poor balance, dizziness, difficulty walking
- Memory loss (short or long term)
- Speech difficulty (slurred or slow and hesitating)
- Mood swings, irritability
- Sleep pattern change (either too much or insomnia)
- Ferocious nightmares
- Stiff or painful neck
- Pain in eyes
- Sensitivity to sound
- Shortness of breath
- Extreme or persistent fatigue
- Symptoms change, come and go
- Experience a flu-like illness, after which you have not felt completely well
By reading the booklet found at this address, you can find a complete list of possible symptoms, not to mention a bunch of other information!
The original blood tests for Lyme are very unreliable. There are a few new tests out that are more accurate in determining if a person has Lyme, but many doctors do not run these tests.
As for treatment, antibiotics tend to work best either a few days after contracting the bacteria or in conjunction with some other treatment. The Cowden protocol often works in eradicating the bacteria and is a more natural approach. (My kinda thing!) Glutathione is a treatment for Lyme that helps your body fight the infection, and as an added bonus, helps with the fatigue.
Lyme Disease is being researched quite a bit right now, so better testing and treatment should be just around the corner!
Basic info: http://www.ilads.org/lyme/about-lyme.php
My doctor’s website: http://draliciahollis.com/