The warmer temperatures that have graced us this spring might be coming with an unexpected downside. Thanks to the warm weather, ticks have awakened earlier this year, and are already roaming freely through parks and gardens.
Although, they usually became active in June, this new phenomenon registered in their behavior, has caused reason for concern regarding the growing numbers of Lyme disease cases.
May was usually Lyme Disease Awareness Month and it was meant to inform people on how they can protect themselves from being bitten by the tick that carries the Borrelia Burgdorferi bacteria, which is actually what causes Lyme disease.
However, global warming has had a somewhat expected effect on ticks, meaning that it allowed them to move and multiply in areas that used to be too cold for them and now, the tick can be found in places like Indiana. This also means that many areas in which the ticks used to thrive, are now being deserted for their far too hot climate.
Lyme disease is an infection that affects multiple body systems and its easiest sign to notice, is the classic bull`s eye rash aka the erythema migrans. Early detection of the infection allows for better treatment, which is done through antibiotics. The same goes for many other diseases carried by ticks.
With an early treatment, Lyme disease is curable, but there are known cases, 20% to 30% of infections, in which the bull`s eye rash does not appear, so it is harder for a person to know if they have been bitten.
Also, there are cases in which the antibiotic doesn`t work, for instance late treatment because of late diagnosis, ineffective immune system of the person or because of simultaneous infections with other tick borne diseases.
If Lyme disease is not cured, a patient can expect joint disorders, neural problems and eventually congestive heart failure. Therefore, prevention of tick bites is of outmost importance.
Doctors recommend wearing long sleeved shirts and long trousers which are to be tucked into socks. You can also use a tick repellent spray on your clothes to keep the ticks away. You should also keep in mind, that usually ticks attached themselves onto pets, who then carry the tick inside the house, where it can bite humans.
New vaccines against the infection with Lyme disease are in study. Doctors recommend to see your physician for the safe removal of the thick and also for further testing, if you believe that you have been bitten by a tick.
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