Lyme

  1. ALERT: No state is safe from Lyme!

    Happy Labor Day. I hope you’re getting some R&R today with those you love.

    Now, summer may be winding to a close, but don't pack away your bug spray just yet.

    Not only are warm-weather pests like ticks still out in droves… but since this has been one of the hottest years on record, they're likely to STAY out for longer than usual.

    Even as temps cool off, ticks can survive pretty much ANY time of year that the ground isn't frozen solid .

    And these little buggers carry Lyme disease, which – if it’s transmitted to you via a tick bite -- can wreak havoc on your heart, brain, joints, and digestive tract.

    It can even mimic diseases like MS and Alzheimer's!

    And according to a new report, Lyme isn't just a concern if you live in certain areas, like New England – because for the first time, Lyme as been detected in ALL 50 states!

    Quest Diagnostics researchers tracked Lyme cases across the U.S. from 2010 to 2017 and found that while the Northeast still had the highest number of infections, Lyme infections jumped by 11 percent from coast to coast.

    In fact, the rates of the disease SOARED in Florida and California.

    From 2015 to 2017, the number of infected patients increased by 77 percent in the Sunshine State... and by an eye-popping 195 percent in the Golden State!

    And the states that neighbor them -- including Arizona and Georgia -- saw notable increases in Lyme, too.

    Texas and Tennessee... as well as Ohio and Virginia... also saw unusual spikes in Lyme.

    The theory is that changing climate conditions are allowing ticks to gain ground in places where they previously couldn't survive.

    But even in states where these pests have had a stronghold for decades, there's been a significant "uptick" in Lyme cases.

    Right here in the Northeast, Lyme cases rose 50 percent from 2015 to 2017. And in Pennsylvania alone -- which had the most Lyme cases of ANY state -- infections rose by a whopping 78 percent.

    What's more, researchers have also discovered that a NEW tick species has arrived in the U.S. for the first time in 50 years.

    It's called the Asian long-horned tick -- and it's been found in seven states on the Eastern Seaboard.

    So far, this tick isn't carrying Lyme or any other human diseases, but in Asia, it carries a virus that kills 15 percent of its victims.

    Translation: Even as summer winds DOWN, you want to ramp UP your defenses against ticks!

    WHENEVER and WHEREVER you’re headed outdoors, wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants tucked into your socks as a first line of protection.

    But since ticks can outsmart clothing, it’s also a good idea to spray your clothes with natural scents that tick them off -- like essential oils of lavender and citronella.

    If you dare to bare any skin, though, be sure to use a stronger insecticide like DEET to keep these bugs at bay.

  2. A major victory for the Average Joes and Janes!

    I’m a little suspicious of authority. I hardly ever take what so-called “experts” say at face value.

    And when I hear about new guidelines from the feds… or “breaking news” coming out of the latest conference… I embrace a healthy amount of skepticism.

    Before I give ANY credence to anything coming from the “authorities,” I dig past the headlines and what they WANT me to think.

    In fact, I’m much more likely to listen to what my own patients tell me. What I can glean through their collective wisdom is a lot closer to the truth than I’ll get out of Pharma-funded studies and parrots with PhDs.

    That’s why I was excited to hear that the latest development in Lyme disease arose out of the efforts of everyday people.

    And what they found chills me to the bone: The ticks that can carry Lyme disease have spread a lot farther than we thought.

    Translation: We’re not as “safe” from Lyme disease as we’ve been told.

    In the new study, regular people from 49 states pulled ticks off themselves, their kids, and their pets and shipped them off in a baggie for the researchers to examine further.

    Now, not every tick carries Lyme… and some ticks can actually carry and transmit OTHER diseases.

    But the 16,000 ticks that were sent in by these civilians provided a much larger data set than the scientists could ever get on their own in such a short period of time. And their multiple locations covered much more ground than most studies ever do – making this a truly national analysis of the Lyme threat.

    And the result? Well, our fastidious friends and neighbors found Lyme-carrying ticks in some unexpected places – more specifically, 83 counties across 24 states where we didn’t think folks were at risk.

    That means that some folks who thought they might have Lyme… or who knew SOMETHING was wrong but couldn’t get proper diagnosis or treatment… might finally get the help they need.

    Because it’s quite possible that there’s no state in the Union that’s safe from Lyme.

    Now, there’s already a bit of a blind spot in the mainstream medicinal community when it comes to Lyme. For instance, if you don’t have that “bull’s-eye” rash… or if the offending tick bite occurred months or years ago… you must not have Lyme.

    But that couldn’t be further from the truth. Folks with Lyme DON’T always exhibit a rash, and the symptoms can linger long after they’re supposedly “cured!”

    Of course, there are also plenty of folks who experience mystery symptoms that go undiagnosed as long as they’re under the care of a doc who doesn’t bother to look for Lyme! (Or who doesn’t know it when he sees it.)

    If you find a tick on yourself, remove it immediately. (There are very good YouTube videos that show you just the right way.)

    And regardless of whether the thing bit you, get checked out right away. You may have to go through a process of elimination to find a doc who’ll take your concern seriously, but it’ll be worth the time and effort.

    Later today, I’ll have the scoop on another danger of ticks you need to be aware of – and how to prevent them from latching on in the first place.

  3. Take a bite out of your summer infection risk

    With the warmer days of summer just around the corner, I'm sure you're itching to enjoy the fantastic weather outdoors. But whether you plan to plant yourself on the beach... hike through the woods... or just swing in a hammock in the backyard, you may wind up with the company of some unwanted companions. As you know, mosquitoes, ticks, and...
  4. This tick-borne disease really latches on

    If these past few months of winter have given you "cabin fever," I'm sure you're itching for the arrival of spring. You want to get back into the great outdoors... shed those winter layers... and feel the sun on your skin once again. Fortunately, spring is officially less than a week away -- but before you hit the trail in...
  5. Lyme disease is on the rise in many states

    Are you living in a Lyme disease danger zone? From George W. Bush to Alec Baldwin, there are a lot of famous folks who've battled Lyme disease in recent years. So, unless you've been living under a rock, you've probably heard that this tick-borne disease can wreak havoc on your heart, brain, joints, and digestive tract -- and even mimic...
  6. Lyme disease doesn’t stop when summer’s over

    Don't let fall ticks catch you off guard From destructive hurricanes in the South... to heat waves and wildfires in the West... we've been seeing some pretty extreme weather all over the country lately. But, hopefully, as things cool down and fall settles in, the milder weather will make heading out into nature a little more inviting once again. After...
  7. You may have Lyme disease, even if you test negative

    Could your lab results be wrong? If you're enjoying the summertime weather near any wooded areas like I am here in the Northeast, there's something you need to watch out for. Ticks! We're in the midst of one of the worst tick seasons on record, and those little buggers will try to hitch a ride wherever they can. You can...
  8. Lyme disease cases to spike this summer

    To avoid Lyme, put this woodland pest to rest After a harsh winter and -- in many parts of the country -- a chilly spring, you probably can't wait to get outdoors this summer. Whether it's an alfresco picnic... a swim in the lake... a walk in the woods... the open air is beckoning! I know you're excited to trade...

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