Lyme disease is spread through the bite of a deer tick, common on Long Island. Ticks are found in dense wooded areas and like to hang in tall brush. Every year we see more ticks spreading more nasty diseases, many of which are difficult to diagnose and treat. Powassan and Lyme disease are just two diseases that can be spread by these pests.
Ticks are insidious and are resilient to cold and inclement weather. Tick breeding season is in the fall, so they will spend the summer attaching themselves to their victims and feeding off of them.
Ticks feed off of blood so diseases carried by them enter their host’s bloodstream and can make them very sick. Lyme disease is one of the most common tick borne illnesses and infects up to 300,000 people a year!
Here are some symptoms of Lyme disease:
A rash usually occurs at the site of the bite, but sometimes will manifest at other parts of the body. The rash may or may not be the classic bulls-eye (EM) rash. It is important to note that fewer than 50% of patients recall the actual tick bite and, according to recent CDC numbers, fewer than 50% of confirmed cases in some states exhibit the bulls-eye rash.
Other symptoms include:
- Unexplained weight gain, loss
- Extreme fatigue
- Swollen glands/lymph nodes
- Unexplained fevers (high or low grade)
- Continual infections (sinus, kidney, eye, etc,)
- Symptoms seem to change, come and go
- Pain migrates (moves) to different body parts
- Early on, experienced a “flu-like” illness, after which you have not since felt well
- Low body temperature
- Allergies/chemical sensitivities.
Getting treated for Lyme disease early is essential. The more the disease is in your system the greater damage it does. Just because symptoms went away doesn’t mean you are in the clear, Lyme disease can lie dormant for years.
The best way to prevent Lyme disease and other tick borne illnesses is to have your yard sprayed for ticks regularly. Keeping them out of your yard will protect your pets and families from being hosts to these pests.