TO ALL DIGGERS: THIS IS IMPORTANT HEALTH-WISE –> PLEASE READ!

b3y0nd3r

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First, if this is such an issue, why isn't anyone trying to cure this? We can cure small pox and just about anything else. This shouldn't be a problem Someone should inventt a lyme disease preventative shot. Or how about a spray the kills ticks? Or infect the tick population with a serum that prevents them getting lyme disease?

This is such BS.
 

LI Tom

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I don't get your drift here.Are you saying that Lyme and other tick diseases are BS or the treatments available are? This is one very serious issue.










are not
 

ColeBen

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First let me thank Barker for his part in bringing the topic of Lyme disease up, and I'd also like to thank the mods for making his post a sticky post. Hopefully every member reads it and is more cautious because of it.

My name is Mike. I became infected with Lyme disease in May of 2000 and have been fighting it since then. I still have issues because of Lyme disease, but am doing much better than I was. My purpose for writing this is to help people understand what it is like having Lyme disease.

I wrote a book about my experiences with Lyme disease. Don't worry, I'm not trying to sell anyone the book (it isn't in print anyway). If someone wishes to read that book, please send me a message with your email address and I'll send you the manuscript. It won't cost you a penny. I'm not going to pretend that the book is well written — I wrote it when I was very ill and now wish I had waited until I was more capable of doing a good job. The book is what it is though and it might help people understand what it is like having Lyme disease.

I don't get into all the medical aspects: I can't tell people what will work, or what won't work. I can say what has helped me and what seems to make things worse. Lyme disease does not affect everyone the same way; some people respond to certain treatments far better than others, just as some of those infected with Lyme disease suffer far more than others.

Prevention is the key; never go into areas that are prone to having ticks without protection (repellent, long pants, etc..).

If you are bitten by a tick, always seek medical treatment and insist that they do a test for Lyme disease. I would also demand that I was put on heavy doses of antibiotics for 3 weeks or so — and I'd go to a different doctor if the one I went to refused. Lyme disease tests are noted for being unreliable, but don't let that stop you from being tested. The most reliable test is a bit expensive — something around $100 — but that is money well spent if you can catch Lyme disease in its early stages.

I do not believe Lyme disease can be cured. Some will tell you otherwise, but most of them haven't had Lyme disease. The medical field seems to be split on that specific aspect of Lyme disease, just as it is divided with regards to all the aspects of Lyme disease.

I do believe Lyme disease can be controlled; especially if it is caught in the very early stages (when first infected).

If infected with Lyme disease, do your best to find a Lyme literate doctor. They are difficult to find and typically do not take insurance, but they're worth the cost and the effort.

Most of those infected with Lyme disease do not get the tell-tale bull's eye rash (around the bite area). Those who do get the tell-tale bull's eye rash — definitely have Lyme disease.

My Lyme literate doctor told me that there are 4 known variations of Lyme disease. I do not recall the specific names of those variations, but two are far and away the most common. My doctor claimed that 98% of Lyme infections are one of those two variations: both of which have symptoms that are relatively mild in retrospect but still no picnic.

Those symptoms involve severe flu-like symptoms for multiple days, joint pain (usually involving a major joint — such as a knee) swelling of the joints (usually a knee) horrible headaches and severe fatigue. Those symptoms can last for years — even long after medical experts have declared the patient to be cured of Lyme disease.

The other two, far less common, strains of Lyme disease are far more serious.

I was “lucky” and contracted one of those two (far more serious) variations of Lyme disease. The uncommon strains attack the host's central nervous system — spirochetes burrow their way into the brain, the eyes, all the organs, and they develop an immunity to the antibiotic used to kill them. As the spirochetes are killed, the patient becomes violently ill due to the spirochetes releasing toxins into the host (they burst when dying).

Everything is affected in a negative manner: your ability to think, your ability to see, your ability to walk, your ability to function. Your joints hurt constantly — so much so that it is really difficult to move. Your balance fails — making it seem like you're drunk or otherwise incapacitated. Your speech is slurred and you can't finish sentences because it is impossible to remember what you were talking about.

I've lost entire days — unable to remember a single thing that happened during the day. This isn't just a matter of not recalling something that happened last week — it's a matter of not recalling anything from the prior minute.

I've gotten lost in known areas right around my home. This happened frequently to me. I'd drive into town and get lost — and I've lived in this area for 24 years. I had no idea of where I was, or how to get home. I'd just continue driving, hoping that something would trigger a memory and I'd find my way home. Sometimes it would take minutes, and sometimes it took me hours of wondering around aimlessly.

I'd get stabbing, shooting, lightning strike, pains throughout my body (I still get them on occasion). The pain is incredible and it strikes anywhere at anytime — it could be my foot, my neck, my stomach, or even my — well, let's just say areas you don't want that kind of pain.

In the past I would have this weird sensation of things crawling just under my skin. It would happen all over my body and it was enough to drive one mad. Scratching did nothing to help, but I scratched myself to the point that I'd bleed all over.

I'd get muscle spasms so severe that they'd pull my vertebrae out of joint. I'd lay on a heating pad turned to high — enough so that I still have burn scars on my back — just to relieve some of the pain.

I was always fatigued. Severely so; simple tasks would require hours of rest just so I could function in a depleted state. There were many times when I couldn't walk 50 yards if it meant saving my own life — I just couldn't manage it.

I could go on and on about the results of having Lyme disease. I've barely scratched the surface when it comes to trying to describe what it is like living with Lyme disease — and I'm one of the more fortunate victims of this disease, I am much better than I was. There are many who suffered far more than I did, and many who are still suffering after having the disease for 20 years or more.

I took antibiotics for 16 full years — large doses of varying antibiotics, always changing to combat the ability of the spirochetes to develop immunity — and that too has had negative effects.

Lyme disease has all but ruined me financially. I've paid nearly all of my medical expenses out of my own pocket (insurance tends to not cover things and most Lyme literate doctors do not accept insurance). Still, I'm one of the lucky people who could get treatment; there are many who cannot and do not.

Lyme disease affects every aspect of my life. Be that physical, or mental, or economical, or emotional. And the latter may well be the most difficult.

It is tough enough losing one's physical abilities, but that really is to be expected just with aging alone. To a lesser degree the same can be said about mental abilities and finances, but I wasn't prepared for the emotional difficulties.

I can't do today what I could easily do 20 years ago. I think everyone who has reached my age can honestly say that. But the difference is that I can't do today, what I could've done today if I hadn't been infected with Lyme disease. It just isn't possible. In a sense, Lyme disease has aged me rapidly, and I've lost a good chunk of my life.

But it isn't just the loss of my abilities that I'm talking about. Lyme disease sort of slaps you with a cold, hard reality: you don't matter. That's a tough lesson to learn. At least it was for me. It's amazing how quickly people move on with their lives — leaving you to your own struggles just when you could really use some help.

That is an issue that just about every Lymie struggles with.

For now I am doing much better. It's been a tough battle but I'm doing OK and I'll fight Lyme disease until I draw my last breath. I expect it will win in the end, as lots of people die from this disease, but it won't win because I quit trying.

Hopefully those who read this far too long post will have a better understanding of what it is like living with Lyme disease. With any luck at all, my words will make you far more aware of the threat that Lyme disease presents without making you fear the outdoors.


Wow thank you so much for taking the time to write this and to explain to us the difficulties of just everyday living. I am so sorry this happened to you. Thanks to you sharing your story you just saved at least one person, or at least expressed the real dangers so that we can take preventative measures. I know I always just left it to chance and thought “it’s just a tick” this has opened my eyes. You are in my thoughts, sending love to you.

It took balls to disclose all this with us so again, I thank you!

You are amazingly strong and never give up.
-Cole Marie🖤
 

DredgerDana

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A few thoughts that I forgot to put in my post above.

I had success with antibiotics — lots and lots of them. Some people do not have success with antibiotics.

Doing away with sugar seems to help me a lot. That means no soda, no sweets, no bread, no starch. Sometimes I cheat and do eat breads/starches. If I do so too much, I start feeling much worse.

Exercise seems to help me. Simple things such as metal detecting, wood working, or just doing stuff around the yard helps me to feel better. It's usually rough when I first get moving, but after a bit I do notice that the pain is much less severe.

I take breaks as I need them. Exerting myself too much still makes me ill, so I've learned to do what I can and rest as I need to.

It is possible to be infected (Lyme disease) multiple times. I always wear repellent when I'm outside and I spread insecticide on our yard and into the woods. I also keep things trimmed well, so there's less chance of ticks in the first place.

Scary stuff, and 300,000 get it a year. There is a need for a better solution. 30 year ago people did not even talk about it, is it a new disease or did it exist for centuries and was missed? Figure you would know. I have had ticks 30 years ago that were hard to pull out , big ones. Always wondered if this is a new disease.

Here is a link, not sure of any value https://draxe.com/natural-strategies-to-cure-lyme-disease/

And on your mention of sugar, its a mild poison. I went on Keto diet, lost 30 pounds and have seen no negative side effects at all.

Did some searching and found this, so will answer own question:
Ticks and Lyme disease have been around for thousands of years. In fact, a recent autopsy on a 5,300-year-old mummy indicated the presence of the bacteria which causes Lyme disease. A German physician, Alfred Buchwald, first described the chronic skin rash, or erythema migrans, of what is now known to be Lyme disease more than 130 years ago. However, Lyme disease was only recognized in the United States in the 1960s and 1970s. And the bacteria that causes it – Borrelia burgdorferi – wasn’t officially classified until 1981.

The 1970s
In the early 1970s a group of children and adults in Lyme, Connecticut, and the surrounding areas were suffering from some puzzling and debilitating health issues. Their symptoms included swollen knees, paralysis, skin rashes, headaches, and severe chronic fatigue.
 
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kromar3336

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I spray all mine digging and outdoor in the woods clothes with permethrin which is made by Sawyers. It lasts for about six washes. Been using it for a few years and so far no ticks. It does not go on the skin just on the clothes.
 

bigdaddyhawk

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What would be too late for that long round of antibiotics? Most of my tick bites stay looking bad for about a month.
 

rjw4law

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Very good article indeed, I used to Manage an Emergency room seen a few of these. Responses from the above posts are very well written...always look beyond the Obvious text book...very serious stuff.
 

Reanm8er

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Knock on wood, I've got a great immune system and seldom ever get a cold or virus. I'm positive I've had a tick-borne virus at least twice. The first time I got Bell's Palsy and the second time cellulitis. For those who don't know, it's a pre-cursor for flesh eating virus. I don't know what physiological changes they do to your system but, now, every time I get a new bite every bite I've ever had lights up like crazy. A man in my home town was bitten by a lone star tick. He regained his strength after a long fight but can no longer eat red meat. No beef, no venison, no lamb, no goat or bear even!

When I was a kid we crawled through the tall fescue playing war or sometimes just to see if we could spot the Bob Whites nesting. We ran into box turtles, salamanders, strawberries deer tracks and the occasional yellow jacket's nest but hardly ever a tic. Now the Bob Whites are gone and the ticks are rampant.

My best defense is to cover up. I wear either gum boots or WWII leggings. A long sleeve shirt a bandana scarf and hat with side curtains. I will only use "Off" on my outer garments and boots. Another defense is thermal underwear. It will protect you from the heat as well as the cold!

Best wishes!
 

b3y0nd3r

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I don't get your drift here.Are you saying that Lyme and other tick diseases are BS or the treatments available are? This is one very serious issue.










are not

I am saying that our current technologies, Lyme shouldn't be an issue anymore. But there is no money to be made to fix it so people suffer.
 

Pistol60

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On another health note, A tetanus shot every ten years is advisable also. We don't hear much of tetanus anymore but why be the one to bring it back to the limelite. Digging in soil we all know contains many many sharp objects to cut your hands.
 

audigger53

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Ok here's the tricks for staying healthy. Either use Cutter's Backwoods or Rapell (either one of them.) Before putting on your clothes, spray your socks, and pants and long sleeve shirt. Let them dry and then put them on. The spray is in the cloth, you can't sweat it off. You can tuck your pant cuffs into the top of your socks if you want to. No chiggers, Ticks, Skitters. or Horse Flies!
Second Heat Exaustion is lack of Water! Heat Stroke is lack of Salt! Heat Exaustion Takes 2-4 days depending on how hot with Humidity. Heat Stroke is 2-4 HOURS for Death! Grab a couple Salt packets from your favorite fast food joint and carry them. If you start to feel dizzy, sick to your stomach, open one and pour it into the palm of your hand. Lick it ONCE! If it tastes Salty, spit it out. That is not the problem. If you can't taste the salt you needed a little, the next lick will be Salty, spit it out and stop. It your first thought is, "I must have gotten the Sugar", Keep licking! You were about to go into Heat Stroke. I learned this growing up in Arizona from my dad. Tried it every time I came home from hunting Jack Rabbits and Doves for a year and it was always salty for a year. Then I came home grabbed the Salt Shaker and lick my palm and the first thought was,"Woff, Momma put sugar in the Salt Shaker!" True story, during the summer have a couple of the salt packets in the car and then carry one in the field. The News always talk about Drinking water, but won't talk about Salt, because that can raise your Blood Pressure. Idiots! If it tastes salty, spit it out. Be Safe and have fun.
 

ethanmiller

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Thank for sharing.Figure this Article ought to be Pinned to the Top here given it's an incredibly genuine risk to Us Treasure Hunters here.
 

ArsoMartinera

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If you find a tick biting you, try to twist it off anti-clockwise, rather than just pulling it out (which risks leaving the mandibles, which carry the infection, in you). They like to gorge themselves full of your blood (carrying a sac which can be up to a cm long when full), so if they are attached to you, they're quite easy to spot (and kill).
 

RustyGold

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Here’s help recognizing these little varmits.

D6BD4B5E-C397-458E-B520-F2D985EB6EDA.jpeg

C8F5F4CB-B54E-45E1-BC92-2F21E7D550DB.jpeg
 

metrotec

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great post by everyone. I'm pushing 75 yrs old, still very active. I am and always have been in the mountains, woods and fields, hunting herbs, animals, gold, and what ever beeps in my ears
at age 49 I had an stroke, DOA. woke up on way to cold storage, wife was in the chapel and they had just told her , "we're sorry, we did all we could do." flew me to a larger hospital, 2 years and I walked outta the woods again.
What I'm getting at is; 3 years before this happened my joints hurt 24/7. could not hold a pencil to write, hated to shake hands, took pain meds, got tested for everything including lyme disease which they thought I had,,,nothing.After the stroke BINGO, nothing, I felt great..perplexed the docs, no reason for the pain leaving. Bless you guys that get the lyme, I can understand your pain..sang, baking soda, apple cider vinegar..helps me a lot...not saying have a stroke and get cured, but strange things Happen
 

RustyGold

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great post by everyone. I'm pushing 75 yrs old, still very active. I am and always have been in the mountains, woods and fields, hunting herbs, animals, gold, and what ever beeps in my ears
at age 49 I had an stroke, DOA. woke up on way to cold storage, wife was in the chapel and they had just told her , "we're sorry, we did all we could do." flew me to a larger hospital, 2 years and I walked outta the woods again.
What I'm getting at is; 3 years before this happened my joints hurt 24/7. could not hold a pencil to write, hated to shake hands, took pain meds, got tested for everything including lyme disease which they thought I had,,,nothing.After the stroke BINGO, nothing, I felt great..perplexed the docs, no reason for the pain leaving. Bless you guys that get the lyme, I can understand your pain..sang, baking soda, apple cider vinegar..helps me a lot...not saying have a stroke and get cured, but strange things Happen
Wow! That is awesome!
 

Bum Luck

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Don't take a chance with your health!

The only way to cut your chances of Lyme's and other insect-bourne illnesses to ZERO is to Prevent them from biting - after the fact is too late and chancy at best. And it's EASY if you do it right.

I spend a LOT of time in the woods and swamps for a living, regardless of the conditions. And I hate bugs; mosquitoes and black flies are my particular unfavorites. I usually don't get many ticks for some reason, but I understand getting up at 3 AM feeling a tick crawling on you. Makes it hard to get back to sleep. And some are attractive to them. I used to wonder what chiggers were, but after a run in with these little buggers that lasted a week, a head-to-toe rash and midnight visit to the ER to treat the anaphylactic shock overload of scores of bites, I've added them to my "bad bug" list.

I have tried everything you can imagine on bugs, but the very best thing I have found so far is Permethrin. Read their fact sheet. Used on your clothes, it KILLS insects, spiders, and chiggers. I've never had one bite through it, even when the skeeters were voracious. They land, they die. Ticks too. Once they are exposed to Permethrin, they are goners, and just drop off dead before you know they're there. I spray my hair and that seems to work there (they advertise it for dogs), not even getting bitten by horse flies.

According to the National Pesticide Information Center, if you put it on your skin, it metabolizes (degrades) rapidly, losing effectiveness. I find about 20 minutes or so. So on exposed skin, I use DEET, but I don't like it. Use gloves and a net instead. Too much DEET makes my skin "crawl", and anything that melts plastic pencils is not good for you. When mosquitoes are really bad, I've had to respray as often as every 10 minutes with 100% DEET. DEET doesn't kill pests, it works by "confusing" them, and I find that's not all the time. When Duke University was testing Permethrin, they had to actually move the swamp testing areas often since it killed so many that they seriously depleted the local populations of insects.

So, limit your exposed skin by using clothing, gloves, and a net that you can use Permethrin on. Tuck your pants into your socks.

After watching others suffer, I am amused by "housewife" remedies like Skin so Soft, vitamin B, garlic (I love the stuff, and eat whole cloves of it). They may have a little effectiveness when the bugs are on "lazy", but I've noticed when I'm in the deep woods and the hordes are vicious, there is a distinct lack of housewives.

Don't take a chance on ending up like some of the horror stories on here, do it right with Permethrin. The US military treats their uniforms with it, and it lasts for a couple of weeks and even after laundering since it doesn't mix well with water.

Be well and happy instead!
 
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Sunny53

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I had read your article.Thanks a lot for your information.
 

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