What is Lyme Disease? How to Protect Yourself & Prevent an Infection

If you are a nature person that likes to spend plenty of time in the nature, then you need to be aware of tick bites. No matter if you ride a bike, hike or jog outside ticks are in their natural environment that can easily bite you. The bite itself is not an issue but the risk of contracting Lyme disease can turn into a big health issue.

Tick

Tick is a mite that can be found all over Europe with eight legs. Fully developed tick is big as a pea, and it can have variations of  colors starting fromwhite to brown which depends on its development and whether it is full of blood or not. They suck the blood from their host and their bites can be safe and without any symptoms, but an infested tick can be really fatal.

There are several species of ticks which commonly affect dogs or cats; however people can be bitten by them without even knowing that. Thankfully for the so obvious symptoms thatone can quickly react and thus avoid he harmful consequences of catching a Lyme disease.

This disease is being contracted by an infected tick bite which can transit a corkscrew-shaped bacterium known as Borreliaburgdorferi. Ticks infested with Lyme disease put the bacteria deep in the skin which later on goes into the blood, causing infections.

The contraindications that can appear after this bite can range from a simple rash to a partial paralysis of the body.

In order to act on time you need to recognize the symptoms of this disease which may differ from one person to another.

The Most Common Signs of Lyme disease:

  • Rash around the bite site
  • Fever
  • Nausea
  • Fatigue
  • Flu-like symptoms
  • Chills
  • Headache

If by any chance you do not immediately notice that you have been bitten by a tick, after several months or weeks these symptoms may be noticed:

  • Stiffness in the neck accompanied with a severe headache
  • Tingling, numbness or throbbing pains in your legs and arms
  • Muscle spasms
  • Swelling
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Blurred vision or eye pain
  • Sudden chills or night sweats.

In severe cases the most common symptoms are:

  • Abnormal heart rhythm,
  • Partial body paralysis
  • Intermittent pain in the muscles, joints, tendons, and bones
  • Problems withbreathing, talking, eating, and sleeping
  • Memory loss
  • Confusion or brain fog
  • Convulsions and disorders of the nervous system.

Prevention against Tick Bites

If you need to visit places where ticks are mostly present, then we recommend you to follow these advices:

  • In order to easily spot ticks wear light colored clothes.
  • Wear proper walking shoes with your socks drawn on your pants.
  • Avoid walking in woods, tall grass, or in areas where there are plenty of bushes.
  • Make sure to use insect repellents and long sleeved shirts.
  • When you enter your home, take a shower and inspect your body for any tick bites.
  • Pets and children should be well inspected, particularly their hair, the belly button, under their arms and around and in the ears.

How to remove a tick?

Ticks bite and when they do that they stay stuck on the skin. It is very important to remove them quickly as the longer they stay on the skin the higher is the risk of bacteria transmission. Hence, make certain to remove it in the next12 hours after you have been bitten. Make sure to remove it whole by using tweezers and not to crush or remove it by hand because it may leave a puncture in the skin and in that way you are again at risk of transferring it to the fingers.

You should use ticks that are sold in pharmacies or tweezers that you must disinfect. Here it is how to pull it: grab the tick near the skin and pull it out slowly till it completely comes off.

Do not discard the tick immediately, but keep it in a tissue or a piece of tape and take it to your doctor once you notice a symptom.

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