1) You are over 10 times more likely to get Lyme disease than West Nile
Virus. You are most likely to be bitten in your own yard or home. Exposure is
not limited to endemic geographical areas.
2) Lyme disease has surpassed HIV as the #1 infectious disease in the
U.S. Lyme spirochetes (bacteria) have been found in blood, tears, saliva, urine,
breast milk, and semen. It is proven to be passed in Utero and believed to
be sexually transmitted (similar to syphilis).
3) Ticks are not the only way Lyme disease is transmitted. An increasing
number of insects and arthropod vectors are known to be carriers including
mosquitoes, biting flies, fleas, mites and lice. In addition to deer: birds,
mammals, and rodents of all sizes can also be carriers of Lyme. The
white-footed mouse is the most common carrier.
4) 50% to 75% of those with Lyme disease NEVER get a rash or see a
tick. Only 10% of children diagnosed with Lyme disease have a history of
the classic bulls-eye rash.
5) All testing for Lyme disease is UNRELIABLE. It is recommended that you
have your blood tested through a tick borne specialty lab such as IGeneX, Inc.
although results may not be 100% accurate. Even if your blood test comes
back negative, it does NOT mean you do not have Lyme disease.
6) Lyme disease can be fatal if not diagnosed and treated properly! It
can become chronic with multiple systemic (body wide) symptoms if not caught
early and can negatively affect your central nervous system, brain, heart,
kidneys, other organs, bones and cartilage, skin, teeth, eyes, and every
7) Lyme disease is one of the most commonly misdiagnosed diseases.
Lyme is "The Great Imitator." It mimics many common diseases and symptoms
such as Fibromyalgia, Chronic fatigue syndrome, Migraine headaches, Insomnia,
Anxiety, Depression, Dementia, Autism, ADHD, Multiple Sclerosis, Lupus,
Rheumatoid arthritis, Parkinson's disease, Lou Gehrig's disease, Alzheimer's
disease and hundreds more.
8) There are over 150 symptoms of Lyme disease. Symptoms can be
devastating and severely disabling or minor and go unnoticed. Every person has
different symptoms and severities depending on the strain of Lyme, their
genetic make-up, strength of their immune system, and the number and type of
co-infections they may have.
9) People infected with the Lyme bacteria often have tick-borne
co-infections such as Babesia, Bartonella, Erlichiosis, Rocky Mtn. Spotted
Fever, and many more. If the co-infections are not also treated, symptoms
may persist, causing permanent damage or death.
10) The #1 cause of treatment failure and relapse is due to doctors and
specialists remaining misinformed about Lyme disease. Even though
doctors may be aware of the CDC guidelines for diagnosis and treatment, only a
Lyme Literate Medical Doctor (LLMD) can diagnose and treat Lyme properly.
This information is not available through sources such as phone books or
Insurance referral programs. Contact the Lyme Disease Association for
more information on Lyme doctor referrals.
11) Treatment for Lyme disease cannot be constrained to one generic
approach as the CDC guidelines currently suggest (21-28 days of antibiotics).
A minimum of 8-12 weeks of antibiotics are needed, even in early stages, due
to the lifecycle of the Lyme spirochete. Months or years of treatment may
be needed; in some cases, it is not curable at all. Customized treatment
is necessary for success.
12) The #1 cause of death from Lyme disease is suicide. It is responsible
for many psychiatric illnesses due to the Lyme spirochete's affinity with
colonizing in the brain.
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Special thanks to Jaime Mason for her contribution to this.
You are a shining light.