Lyme disease is a tick-borne illness caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi. Lyme disease is transmitted by the bite of an infected black-legged tick, commonly known as a deer tick.
You’re more likely to get Lyme disease if you live or spend more time in grassy and heavily wooded areas where ticks carrying Lyme disease thrive. It’s important to take common-sense precautions in tick-infested areas.
SYMPTOMS OF LYME DISEASE
Early symptoms of Lyme disease start between 3 to 30 days after an infected tick bites you.
- Muscle and joint aches.
- Swollen lymph nodes.
LESS COMMON SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS
Weeks after infection, some people develop:
- Heart problems, such as an irregular heartbeat
- Eye inflammation
- Liver inflammation (hepatitis)
- Severe fatigue
If untreated, new signs and symptoms of Lyme infection might appear in the following weeks to months. These include:
- Neurological problem
- joint pain
- Erythema migrans.
Although Lyme disease is commonly divided into three stages — early localized, early disseminated, and late disseminated — symptoms can overlap. Some people will also present in a later stage of disease without having symptoms of earlier disease.
TREATMENT OF LYME DISEASE.
What’s the Best Way to Prevent a Tick Bite?
Ticks can’t fly or jump. But they live in shrubs and grasses and can grab onto you when you pass by. To avoid getting bitten:
- Wear pants and socks in areas with lots of trees and when you touch fallen leaves.
- Wear a tick repellent on your skin and clothing that has DEET, lemon oil, or eucalyptus.
- For even more protection, use the chemical permethrin on clothing and camping gear.
- Shower within 2 hours after coming inside. Look for ticks on your skin, and wash ticks out of your hair.
- Put your clothing and any exposed gear into a hot dryer to kill whatever pests might be on them.
When to See a Doctor If you see any Symptom of Lyme
If you develop flu-like symptoms days or weeks after being bitten by a tick or notice that the skin surrounding a tick bite is becoming more swollen with enlarging areas of redness, it is time to visit a doctor for evaluation and possible treatment for Lyme disease.
If you don’t have the rash but have symptoms like fatigue, fever, and headache but no respiratory symptoms like a cough, you may want to talk to your doctor.