Okay folks, in my last blog, I requested that readers let me know what they'd like for me to write about in these blogs. I got one response—an update on my Lyme Disease. So thank you for your concern, and here we go.
First, if you'd like I background on this whole story, I urge you to go to keyword "Lyme" here on our website or click here and read or watch the series I did called "The Lyme Controversy."
Unfortunately, Lyme Disease has been the center of a battle within the medical community over exactly how to treat it, and the length of time one should be on antibiotics. Some believe 2-4 weeks will cure you no matter how long it's been in your system, others believe that you might have to be on antibiotics for years if it's gone unchecked for some period of time.
To ease your mind, both groups believe that if you catch it right away, you should be able to nip it with 2-4 weeks of antibiotics. In my case, I ignored the symptoms for at least 5 years before deciding to ask a doctor what was wrong with me.
I had constant pain in my right hip that eventually also moved into my right shoulder. I was tired all the time, and everyday had a low grade fever. I later came to learn that I had other symptoms of Lyme disease that I hadn't connected—constant sleep disruption for one. I was waking up in the middle of the night and staying awake for hours.
Night sweats for another. Long story short, I ended up going to a Lyme Literate Medical Doctor all the way in Chesapeake, who concluded I had Lyme Disease. I was shocked.
I later found in my medical records that I had gone to the doctor for a tick bite right around the time I remember my symptoms starting, but I never made the connection.
Flash forward to today, I think about 3 years later now, and I'm happy to report I'm doing much better. I am still on antibiotics and have been all this time.
The doctor changes them up regularly, believing in the protocol that the spirochetes are very smart, and will get around one, so you hit ‘em with another, then another, then another, until they are eventually defeated. It wasn't until after the first 8 months on antibiotics that I started to note some progress.
Three years later I can say that I am not suffering from fatigue, night sweats, sleep disruption, and as of about 4 months ago, the daily fever disappeared. I am also on many supplements and vitamins to help. However, the one lingering thing, is the pain in my hip and shoulder.
It is mostly ignorable most days, but there are still the days or weeks where it really hurts. However, it is not debilitating. I still do rigorous yard work, play volleyball, ride my bike, etc.
I just hurt a bit more after doing it. But I refuse to let it stop me. So many people with Lyme Disease have FAR more suffering than I have, so I feel grateful. But with ticks out in force now, and Lyme Disease Awareness month next month, I urge you to be very careful outdoors, check yourself regularly.
Treat your yards with tick repellant like Sevin, wear long pants and shirts if gardening, and PAY ATTENTION TO YOUR BODY. I never got the signature bulls eye rash, and not everyone does. If you start to get flu like symptoms, or notice aches and pains, or unexplained fatigue, don't ignore it like I did. You don't want to wait until it's too late. And DO YOUR OWN RESEARCH if you don't feel healthy, or don't think you're getting the answers you need. You don't want to suffer through years of a misdiagnosis, when you could be missing out on treatment.
Again, go to keyword "Lyme" to read more. Almost every week I get an email from someone who found the series on our website, and wants more information. I'm so glad that sharing my story may be helping others find the road to recovery.