Lyme Disease. What is it, and how do I know if I have it?

Many people have heard of Lyme disease.  They know it is a tick-borne illness.  They may know that a prevalent  symptom is a bull’s-eye rash.  Even medical professionals are not in agreement as to what constitutes Lyme.  Some professionals believe that Lyme is a catch all diagnosis for multi symptom illnesses that do not fit the normal parameters of diagnosis.

Lyme disease was ‘discovered’ in Lyme Connecticut in the 1970s.  The spirochete bacteria believed to cause Lyme was discovered in 1982.

Common Symptoms:

  • Bull’s-eye rash
  • Headache
  • Neck pain
  • Back pain,
  • Flu like symptoms,
  • Swollen lymph nodes,
  • Weakness,
  • Fever,
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle soreness
  • Joint pain

These symptoms can occur for a number of reasons.  I have had all these symptoms at one time or another, except the bull’s eye rash.  You can see why this disease can be difficult to diagnose and treat.

The first line of treatment is antibiotics.  However, a spirochete bacteria is very efficient at hiding in the tissues.  It s corkscrew shape allows the bacteria to burrow into the tissue and hide or escape the antibiotics.  The bacterium is also very smart, and is able to adapt so as to make the antibiotics ineffective after the acute phase of the disease.

Holistic methods are effective in treating the disease as the bacterium has not come into contact with these substances, so it does not know how to evade them.  Some very effective antimicrobial  herbs are:

  • Japanese knotweed
  • Ghanaian quinine
  • Cats claw
  • Sweet wormwood
  • Andrographis,
  • Cryptolepis, and

Essential Oils can also be of service:  Oregano, cinnamon bark and clove have been found to be effective in the treatment of Lyme.  Of course, always use caution with essential oils.  These three in particular are very volatile and can cause damage if taken internally or applied to the skin.  Always seek the help of a degreed, certified professional.

Lyme can be prevented if caution and preventive measures are used out of doors in wooded areas where ticks are prevalent.  Proper clothing should be worn.  Pant legs should be tucked into socks to prevent access to the body, and light colored clothing is optimal.  An additional layer of protection is found in using essential oils as a barrier.  Research indicates that this blend is as effective as the chemical DEET which is found in chemical pesticides:

  • 5 drops peppermint essential oil
  • 5 drops cedarwood essential oil
  • 7 drops lavender essential oil
  • 10 drops geranium essential oil
  • 10 drops lemongrass essential oil
  • 15 drops lemon eucalyptus essential oil

Combine all of these oils in a 4 oz bottle.  Fill the bottle to the neck with purified water.  Shake well and use as often as necessary.  Of course, avoid the eyes when spraying.

If you find that you have been bitten by a tick, take some needle nose tweezers and grasp the tick as close to your skin as possible.   Pull away from your skin in a slow and steady motion.  Twisting or turning could cause the mouth parts to separate from the tick body, and stay in the skin.   Clean the bite, and apply lavender essential oil every five minutes for an hour.  This may be enough to kill any of the pathogens that have entered the skin.

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Until next time,

Dr. Polly