Lyme disease is caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi and is transmitted to humans through the bite of infected black-legged ticks (deer tick).
Ticks were a fact of life for many growing up in the ’80s and ’90s. If a child came home with a tick on their head, mothers would apply Vaseline over the bug and gently pulled it out. Today ticks are more of a threat. While not all deer ticks carry the Lyme bacteria, the bite of an infected one is dangerous.
Typical symptoms include fever, fatigue, headaches, and a skin rash called erythema migrans (often seen in the early stage).
If left untreated, an infection from Lyme disease can spread to joints, the heart, and the nervous system.
Every year, there are approximately 30,000 cases of Lyme disease reported to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). And this doesn’t account for all the cases of Lyme disease that are diagnosed in the US each year.
Unless the infection is immediately caught even several weeks of antibiotics often will not kill the infection. If Lyme disease is not diagnosed and treated early, it can spread and can go into hiding, causing health problems years after the infection occurs.
People treated with antibiotics in the early stages of Lyme disease usually recover completely. Antibiotics like amoxicillin are commonly used for oral treatment.
Untreated Lyme disease can produce a wide range of symptoms, depending on the stage of infection.
These include fever, rash, facial paralysis, and arthritis.
Seek medical attention if you observe any of these symptoms and have had a tick bite, live in an area known for Lyme disease, or have recently traveled to an area where Lyme disease occurs.
Later Signs and Symptoms of Lyme Disease
- Severe headache and neck stiffness
- Additional rashes throughout the body
- Arthritis with severe joint pain and swelling (knees and other large joints).
- Facial palsy (droop on one or both sides of the face)
- Intermittent pain in tendons, muscles, joints, and bones
- Irregular heartbeat
- Episodes of dizziness or shortness of breath
- Inflammation of the brain and spinal cord
- Nerve pain
- Shooting pains, numbness, or tingling in the hands or feet
- Short-term memory
Can CBD help those with Lyme Disease?
While CBD won’t cure Lyme disease, it may help relieve the symptoms.
It is important to receive early treatment for Lyme disease, as the illness can lead to serious side effects and related complications.