WPC: The tick bite that changed my life

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I am a very private person.  Very few people know about my trials and tribulations.  That’s just me – I play my cards close to the vest.  Until now…

I will let you in on a struggle that has consumed me for five years and changed my body and my life.

I have the unfortunate distinction of being a “Lymie.”  I suffer with chronic Lyme Disease and the co-infections Bartonella and Babesia.  I live in a Lyme hot spot and personally know over two dozen people with Lyme Disease, including my husband and three in my extended family.

Lyme Disease is an infectious disease caused by the Borrelia burgdorferi spirochete, which is transferred by the blacklegged (deer) tick.  When bitten, a tick may also simultaneously transmit Babesiosis, Ehrlichiosis, and Bartonella.  Ticks are most abundant in wooded areas and tall grasses, but can also be found in lawns and shrubs.  Ticks can be active in the winter; they are not killed by freezing temperatures.

While a bulls-eye rash is the most familiar symptom of Lyme Disease, 50% of patients with Lyme Disease do not recall a rash.  I never had one.

Lyme Disease is a hidden epidemic.  Known as “the great imitator” it is wreaking havoc in rural communities.  The unpleasant reality is that many people are suffering in silence because they have been misdiagnosed and are being treated for problems and diseases they don’t even have. Lyme Disease symptoms mimic multiple sclerosis, fibromyalgia, ALS, Parkinson’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis, chronic fatigue syndrome, lupus and other autoimmune diseases.  And to make matters worse, the blood tests that most hospitals and clinics use are not sensitive enough, resulting in an extremely high number of “false negative” results.

The symptoms I suffer from are numerous.

{go ahead and take a pee break or get a drink – we’re gonna be here for a while}

Here we go…

Excruciating headaches
Brain fog
Memory loss
Word finding difficulty
Extreme fatigue
Malaise
Ringing in the ears
Jaw pain
Thrush
Lightheadedness
Dizziness
Stiff neck
Joint pain, swelling and stiffness
Swollen, painful knees
Muscle pain
Rib soreness
Shoulder and back pain
Tingling in fingers and toes
Numbness in hands
Insomnia
Night sweats
Anxiety
Hair loss

{I’m a total buzzkill, right?}

The good news is that I’ve been in treatment for 1-1/2 years and some of my symptoms are slowly lessening.

My purpose for writing this post is this…

If reading this prevents ONE person from suffering with an undiagnosed case of Lyme Disease, then it was worth spilling my little secret.  Early diagnosis is important.

To learn more about Lyme Disease:

Testing for Lyme Disease and associated tick-borne diseases:

  • Igenex (blood tests and tick submission test)
  • Tickchek (tick submission test)

To find a “Lyme literate” doctor:

Lyme Disease treatment

Help prevent Lyme Disease:

 

Disclaimer:  I am not in any way connected with the above websites.  Throughout my research, I have found that these sites contain the most accurate and detailed information regarding Lyme Disease, testing and prevention.

4 thoughts on “WPC: The tick bite that changed my life

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