What is Lyme Disease?
People ask me often, "What is Lyme Disease exactly? I thought I would take the time to dive into that today.
According to the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), "Lyme disease is the most common infectious tick-borne disease in the United States. The disease was named after the town of Lyme, Connecticut, where it was first identified back in 1975."
Lyme disease is caused by a spirochete (pronounced spiro’keet), a corkscrew-shaped bacterium called Borrelia burgdorferi). Lyme is called “The Great Imitator" or “The Invisible Illness,” because its symptoms mimic many other diseases. ALS, MS, Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's-- just to name a few.
This is why many people aren't diagnosed properly. It can affect any organ of the body--including the brain and nervous system, muscles and joints, and the heart.
How do you get Lyme? Well, that's a hot topic for sure.
According to the CDC, you get it through the bite of infected black-legged (or deer) ticks. But according to one of the leading authorities on Lyme disease, Dr. Dietrich Klinghardt, the bacteria that causes it can also be spread by other biting or blood-sucking insects, which include mosquitoes, fleas, spiders, and mites. There are even doctors and experts that claim you can transmit it through saliva and sex.
Ticks can become infected with more than one disease causing microbe (called co-infection). If you are bit by a tick, you have the chance of getting co-infections as well. My daughter was diagnosed with the co-infection Babesia, where my son and I did not have any co-infections.