SYMPTOMS of Lyme disease
Between 2 and 32 days after the bite, symptoms appear: fatigue, flu-like symptoms, stiff neck, backache, headache, nausea, and vomiting
Ultimately, enlargement of the lymph nodes and spleen may occur, along with irregular heart rhythm, arthritis, and brain damage
Some of these symptoms slowly pass away over 2-3 years. But sometimes symptoms recur later without having been bitten again
Because this disease is now so prominent, and because it can occur so mysteriously, here are more detailed symptoms on its usual 3 stages (which not everyone goes through)
1 - Small raised bumps (and/or a rash) appear on the entire body for 1-2 days or several weeks and then fades. Fever, chills, nausea, and vomiting may also occur.
2 - Weeks or months later, facial paralysis may occur. Frequently, enlargement of the spleen and lymph glands occurs and or severe headaches, enlargement of the heart muscle, and abnormal heart rhythm.
3 - This can develop into a backache, stiff neck, joint pains in the knees, swelling and pain in other joints, and even degenerative muscle and joint disease.
Physicians especially look for these symptoms, before treating with antibiotics: a small red bump at the site of the tick bite; a bull's eye rash surrounding it; and flu-like symptoms such as fatigue, chills, and joint pain. If treatment is postponed until more advanced symptoms develop (heart, brain, or joint problems), drug medications do not work as well.
Causes of Lyme disease
The bite of a tiny tick (Ixodes dammini) is primarily carried by deer; but it is also carried, in
the eastern states, by white-footed field mice and, in the west, by lizards and jackrabbits. In California, it is also transmitted by the black-legged tick, carried by wood rats.
Both deer ticks and black-legged ticks are very tiny: An adult is less than 1/10th of an inch, and the nymph is a pinhead in size. They are much smaller than a dog tick.
Lyme disease most frequently occurs where the white-tailed deer is most abundant, which is the northeastern states. Eight States reported 90% of the cases: Connecticut, Massachusetts, California, Minnesota, New York, Rhode Island, Wisconsin, and New Jersey. But it has occurred in every state except Alaska, Arizona, Hawaii, Montana, and Nebraska. The disease was first identified in the mid-1970s in Lyme, Connecticut.
Dogs and cats can collect these special sticks out in the woods and bring them into your home.
Tick bites are generally painless and unnoticed; so the symptoms may not at first, or later, be correctly diagnosed. But in advanced stages, when correct diagnosis finally occurs, the situation may have become critical.
The symptoms are similar to those of multiple sclerosis, gout, and Epstein-Barr virus (chronic fatigue syndrome), all three of which see.
A test now exists which can detect the bacteria (Borrelia burgdorferi) which causes Lyme disease. Antibodies are present from 3 days to 3 weeks after infection.
The majority of cases occur in the summer and fall. After a tick bites, it waits several hours before it begins to feed on the host's blood; and, once it does, it feasts for 3-4 days. The longer the tick remains attached, the greater the risk of Lyme disease.
Lyme disease is treatable and almost always curable if correctly diagnosed in the early stages. But, because the bites are usually painless, the incubation period so long, and the symptoms so varied, the problem may go unrecognized for weeks or months.
If you develop a bull's eye type of rash anywhere on your body, see your health-care provider right away.
Home remedies for Lyme disease
- The longer the tick is attached, the greater the risk of Lyme disease.
- Remove the tick with tweezers. Put the tweezers close to the skin and slowly pull straight out. Do not twist. You want the entire tick out, without leaving part of it in the
skin or injecting bacteria from its broken body into the skin. You may pour rubbing alcohol on the tick before pulling him out. Do not touch the tick with your hands. Do not apply kerosene, turpentine, or petroleum jelly.
- Wash your hands and the bite area. Apply rubbing alcohol to the bite area. Do not use a match to get the tick out.
- Save the tick in a jar. Call a physician if you want it tested immediately. Watch for symptoms over the next 3 weeks.
- Put suspicious clothing in the dryer for 30 minutes, to kill ticks by dehydration. Washing clothes, even in hot water and bleach, does not necessarily kill ticks.
- Heat relieves pain. Hot baths are helpful.
Prevention of Lyme disease
The best solution to this problem is prevention. Avoid going out in the woods in the summer months, when ticks are the most active (especially June to August). Stay in the center of the trails. Check yourself and your children carefully afterward.
Wear long pants and tuck them into your socks. Wear a long-sleeved shirt with a high neck or scarf, plus hat or gloves. If the clothing is light-colored, you can see the ticks better.
You may choose to use an insect repellent containing DEET (diethyl toluamide). It lasts longer than others and is said to be safe on the outside. But it is deadly if taken into your body, and dissolves plastics and synthetics.
Do not have a dog or cat; they vacuum up the sticks and bring them to the house, where they fall off and you get them. You may miss the pets, but they will be replaced with lots of songbirds and some happy chipmunks.
Not everyone bitten acquires the disease. A high sugar and fat diet attract insects! The skin eliminates toxins, which attract bugs when the diet is unnatural.
When the blood is pure and the body clean, there is far less likelihood of tick bites and lice infestation.
A diet high in fiber and natural food will help keep the body clean and protect against infections. Sugar attracts insects.
Herbs useful in preventing infections include echinacea, goldenseal, garlic, and burdock. Rubbing with lemon juice will disinfect the area. Aloe vera on the area will aid in healing.
Vitamins A and C protect against infections. B complex vitamins help keep the blood clean. Eat lots of greens.
A test is now available, but false positives occur sometimes. So, if you are being treated for Lyme disease and are not getting better, consider having a second test made. One study of nearly 800 people, diagnosed with Lyme disease, revealed that half of them did not have it! Physicians blame false-positive tests for this.
Also, Read home-remedies-for-morning-sickness/