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Many individuals plan fun outdoor activities when the weather is nice and warm during spring and summer. Hiking, swimming, or road trips are some of the activities many people do enjoy. Each activity provides new memories to enjoy and work with the body by incorporating the muscles, tissues, and ligaments through everyday movement. As fun as these outdoor activities are, the outdoors can be dangerous when you least expect it, as factors can cause damage to the body without even a person realizing it is happening. Today’s article looks at a bacteria called Borrelia burgdorferi, commonly known as Lyme disease, its symptoms, and available treatments for Lyme disease. We refer patients to certified providers specializing in therapies to help those with Lyme Disease. We also guide our patients by referring to our associated medical providers based on their examination when it’s appropriate. We find that education is the solution to asking our providers insightful questions. Dr. Alex Jimenez DC provides this information as an educational service only. Disclaimer
What Is Lyme Disease?
Have you noticed a rash that randomly appeared out of nowhere? How about feeling the effects of fatigue throughout the entire day? Or how about inflammatory issues affecting your joints? Some of these are signs and symptoms that you might be at risk of developing Lyme disease. The original description of how Lyme disease was manifested dates back to 1883 in Europe by the German physician Alfred Buchwald, who described it as now called ACA (acrodermatitis Chronica atrophicans), and research studies defined Lyme disease as a multi-organ animal-borne disease from ticks that affects the vital organs (skin, nerves, and heart) associated with the musculoskeletal system. Lyme disease is transmittable from either the tick itself or a tick-infested animal like a rodent or a deer. Lyme disease is quite difficult to diagnose since a tick can hide in tall, grassy, and woodsy areas that many individuals walk through and don’t recall ever getting a tick bite.
Symptoms Of Lyme Disease
Suppose an individual lives in a location where ticks are native and thrive. In that case, they may succumb to Lyme disease symptoms which vary depending on the severity and come in different stages: early, disseminated, and late.
When a tick has bitten a person, the skin develops an expanding red area that forms a bull’s eye circle rash known as erythema migrans. Some individuals don’t develop this type of rash, but it can be at more than one place on their bodies. Other symptoms that are potentially involved with erythema migrans in the early stages of Lyme disease include fatigue, headache, neck stiffness, and swollen lymph nodes are accompanied.
Studies have shown that Lyme disease may manifest in the involvement of the musculoskeletal system. If a person hasn’t treated the tick bit within a couple of weeks, this disease goes to a disseminated stage where the vital organs and muscles begin to be affected. During this stage, Lyme disease can mimic other symptoms like joint inflammation associated with rheumatoid arthritis. When people suffer from a tick bite and have not been treated, it can affect the joints by mimicking inflammatory joint swelling, causing individuals to be at risk of developing arthritis. Lyme disease also may trigger fibromyalgia symptoms in the individual’s body, causing them to be in immense pain.
If Lyme disease hasn’t been treated for months, it can affect the surrounding nerve roots and joint structures. Lyme disease may trigger inflammatory markers in the blood-brain barrier that may overlap with neurological disorders like Bell’s palsy (temporary paralysis on one side of the face) and trigger sensory-motor dysfunction in the arms and legs. Studies reveal that the central and peripheral nervous systems affected by Lyme disease may be at risk of developing meningitis. This means that the spine al cord could potentially be involved with Lyme disease if not treated as soon as possible.
An Overview Lyme Disease-Video
Have you been experiencing swelling around your joints? How about feeling a tingling sensation running down your arms and legs? Have you been waking up with neck stiffness? Some of these are signs that you could be at risk of developing Lyme disease. The video above gives an introduction to what Lyme disease is and how it affects the body. Lyme disease is a multi-systemic disease transmitted by an insect known as a tick. This insect thrives in tall, grassy, woodsy areas and can be mistaken for a poppy seed due to its small size. Many individuals don’t realize that they have Lyme disease from a tick until the symptoms have begun to affect the body. Luckily there are ways to treat Lyme disease and prevent it from creating havoc on the body.
Treatments Available For Lyme Disease
Lyme disease is treatable as many physicians prescribe antibiotics to individuals that have Lyme disease. The antibiotics will attach themselves to the bacteria from Lyme disease and eliminate it from the body in the early stages. Other treatments like chiropractic care may also help alleviate the associated symptoms of Lyme disease. How does chiropractic care correlate with Lyme disease? Well, chiropractic care is not just for the back; it can help improve the function of the central nervous system. As mentioned earlier, Lyme disease can mimic other symptoms like joint inflammation. When a person gets their spine adjusted, it can help relieve the stiffness from the surrounding muscles and reduce aches and pain in the body. Some of the ways to prevent Lyme disease include:
- Wearing light, breathable clothing (long pants, long shirt, hat, gloves, etc.)
- Use insect repellent
- Avoid walking through long grass
- Check clothing (They like to attach to anything)
- Remove them with a tweezer (Grasp them gently near their head or mouth)
Enjoying the warmer weather is great for many individuals that want to do fun outdoor activities. However, it can be fatal when factors begin to damage the body without even the person realizing it. Lyme disease is a multi-organ disease transmitted by an insect known as a tick. This tiny insect can attach to any exposed skin and cause many symptoms that can affect the body. Many individuals who a tick has bitten are at risk of developing inflammatory symptoms that mimic other chronic issues. These untreated issues can overlap with chronic diseases but can be treatable if caught early. Available treatments like antibiotics and chiropractic care may help manage the symptoms. At the same time, the necessary precautions can prevent the tick from infecting the body so that you can enjoy the outdoors.
Biesiada, Grażyna, et al. “Lyme Disease: Review.” Archives of Medical Science : AMS, Termedia Publishing House, 20 Dec. 2012, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3542482/.
Dabiri, Iman, et al. “Atypical Presentation of Lyme Neuroborreliosis Related Meningitis and Radiculitis.” Neurology International, PAGEPress Publications, Pavia, Italy, 2 Dec. 2019, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6908959/.
Skar, Gwenn L, and Kari A Simonsen. “Lyme Disease – Statpearls – NCBI Bookshelf.” In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL), StatPearls Publishing, 6 May 2022, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK431066/.
Steere, A C. “Musculoskeletal Manifestations of Lyme Disease.” The American Journal of Medicine, U.S. National Library of Medicine, 24 Apr. 1995, pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/7726191/.
The information herein on "An Overview Of Lyme Disease" is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional or licensed physician and is not medical advice. We encourage you to make healthcare decisions based on your research and partnership with a qualified healthcare professional.
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