What is Lyme Disease?
A health article about Lyme Disease from Your Health Online the A to Z directory of dealing with Health Problems & nutritional Self Care Strategies
This disease got its name in 1975got its name when two mothers, in Lyme and East Haddam Connecticut, contacted the health department because they were alarmed at the many cases of arthritis in children in their area.
"Lyme arthritis" as it was named by researchers from Yale was discovered in 39 children and 12 adults. This same illness, although not formally named until 1975, was observed in the 1800s.
In 1981 the bacteria which passes the disease via the bite of a tick was isolated by Willy Burgdorfer at the Rocky Mountain Laboratories. It was named "Borrelia burgdorfere" (Bb) after the man who discovered it.
A multisystemic disorder, Lyme disease is caused by the spirochete, Borrelia burgdorferi, which is carried by the minute tick Ixodes dammini or another tick in the Ixodidae family.
It often begins in the summer with the classic skin lesion called erythema chronicum migrans (ECM). Weeks or months later, cardiac or neurologic abnormalities sometimes develop, possibly followed by arthritis
Signs & Symptoms of Lyme Disease
Stage 1 :- ECM heralds stage I with a red macule or papule, often at the site of a tick bite. This lesion often feels hot and itchy and may grow to more than 20" (50 cm) in diameter.
Within a few days, more lesions may erupt along with a malar rash, conjunctivitis, or diffuse urticaria. In 3 to 4 weeks, lesions are replaced by small red blotches, which persist for several more weeks.
Malaise and fatigue are constant, but other findings are intermittent: headache, fever, chills, achiness, and regional lymphadenopathy.
Less common effects are meningeal irritation, mild encephalopathy, migrating musculoskeletal pain, and hepatitis. A persistent sore throat and dry cough may appear several days before ECM.
Stage 2 :- Weeks to months later, the second stage begins with neurologic abnormalities - fluctuating meningoencephalitis with peripheral and cranial neuropathy - that usually resolve after days or months. Facial palsy is especially noticeable.
Cardiac abnormalities, such as a brief, fluctuating atrioventricular heart block, may also develop
Stage 3 :- Characterized by arthritis, stage 3 begins weeks or years later. Migrating musculoskeletal pain leads to frank arthritis with marked swelling, especially in the large joints.
Recurrent attacks may precede chronic arthritis with severe cartilage and bone erosion.
What Causes Lyme Disease?
Lyme disease occurs when a tick injects spirocheteladen saliva into the blood¬stream or deposits fecal matter on the skin. After incubating for 3 to 32 days, the spirochetes migrate out to the skin, causing ECM. Then they disseminate to other skin sites or organs by the blood¬stream or lymph system.
The spirochetes' life cycle isn't completely clear: They may survive for years in the joints or they may trigger an inflammatory response in the host and then die.
Initially, Lyme disease was identified in a group of children in Lyme, Connecticut. Now Lyme disease is known to occur primarily in three parts of the United States:
• in the northeast, from Massachusetts to Maryland
• in the midwest, in Wisconsin and Minnesota
• in the west, in California and Oregon.
Although Lyme disease is endemic to these areas, cases have been reported in 43 states and 20 other countries, including Germany, Switzerland, France, and Australia.
• The best way to prevent Lyme disease is to prevent tick bites. Wear light-colored clothing that covers most of your skin when you go into the woods or an area overgrown with grass and bushes. This makes it easier to see and remove ticks on your clothing.
• Take a detailed patient history, asking about travel to endemic areas and exposure to ticks.
• Keep long hair pulled back or placed in a cap for added protection.
• Check for drug allergies, and administer antibiotics carefully.
• For a patient with arthritis, help with range-of-motion and strengthening exercises, but avoid overexertion.
• When outside, don't sit on the ground.
• Assess the patient's neurologic function and level of consciousness frequently. Watch for signs of increased intracranial pressure and cranial nerve involvement, such as ptosis, strabismus, and diplopia.
• Check for cardiac abnormalities, such as arrhythmias and heart block.
• Don't use the old methods of putting petroleum jelly, nail polish, kerosene, gasoline or matches on the tick to try to remove it. These don't work.
When to seek Medical Advice:
Because isolation of B. burgdorferi is unusual in humans and because indirect immunofluorescent antibody tests are marginally sensitive, diagnosis of¬ten rests on the characteristic ECM lesion and related clinical findings, especially in endemic areas.
Mild anemia and an elevated erythrocyte sedimentation rate, leukocyte count, serum immunoglobulin M level, and aspartate aminotransferase level support the diagnosis.
A 10- to 20-day course of oral tetracycline is the treatment of choice for adults. Penicillin and erythromycin are alternates. Oral penicillin is usually prescribed for children. When given in the early stages, these drugs can minimize later complications.
When given during the late stages, high-dose penicillin LV. may be a successful treatment. There is now a vaccine (Lymerix) available to prevent Lyme disease. For maximal effectiveness, it's given as a series of three injections.
CLINICAL TIP Neurologic abnormalities are best treated with LV. ceftriaxone or LV. penicillin.
Self Care strategies for Living with Lyme Disease
There is no specific home treatment for children with Lyme disease. Make sure your child takes the required medication as prescribed by your child's doctor, and take steps to prevent and control Lyme disease.
Diet change strategies:
Building your immune system to peak level would help your body to deal with this problem.
Vitamin & Nutrient Associations
Even when we try to eat well, we're disadvantaged. The nutritional content of most food has been compromised over the years, not only by deficient soils and modern production, transportation, storage and processing methods, but also by the enormous amounts of chemical and artificial substances added to promote growth, storage life, taste and appearance.
It's for this reason that more and more medical authorities are advocating the use of vitamin and mineral supplements. However, finding them in the right combination can be both confusing and costly.
The nutrition products I am going to recommend you make use of knowledge gained from the botanical world's 6,000 year history. They incorporated health building nutritional herbs with the best modern technology to help our bodies cleanse and detoxify so that the cells - the tiniest living units - can be as fully nourished as possible.
This allows the cells to grow, repair and to perform their functions with the best possible efficiency so that we feel and look better and are more able to prevent and fight disease. Once the body begins to clear itself of toxins it can more efficiently absorb nutrition.
As Aloe Vera Juice is a refreshing and anti-bacterial drink, you might find that taking this daily, diluted in some filtered water will not only refresh you like ‘a shower inside you’ but also assists in dealing with any digestive issues you may also be experiencing.
You may find benefit from our information on detoxification as well as a bit about detoxing because of change of diet
It may be due to difficulties with your digestive system that is causing your body to be starved of key nutrients, vitamins or minerals. In this case you may find useful answers by reviewing our article on Nutrition For Your Cells. There is also more information here about why is nutrition such an issue nowadays?
It may be that your metabolism has slowed due to pressures that have been placed on your system through life in general or through specific “challenges” you have faced in the last few months or last few years. Review this by looking at our article about balancing your Metabolic Rate.
Further reading through our articles on Lyme Disease health issues will give you a body of information that will help you decide what options you have to deal with the underlying causes of your problem through giving your body the nutrition products that will assist you body to heal from the inside out.
We wish you well in your search for solutions to this Lyme Disease problem and your movement towards better health in all areas.
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