Today’s blog post is set up a little differently. I’m going to do a myth vs fact post related to how you can get Lyme. And then I will finish by sharing just a few ways to aid in the prevention of Lyme.
Myth: Only ticks can give you Lyme
Fact: You can also get Lyme from other bugs as mosquitoes and spiders (and some others). Studies have also proven that it can be sexually transmitted and passed on in-utero.
Myth: Ticks can only give you Lyme
Fact: Ticks can also spread many other diseases and/or co-infections. Some of the more common co-infections are: Babesia, Bartonella, Ehrlichia, Mycoplasma, Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, Anaplasma, and Tularemia (there are more, but that gives you an idea).
Myth: If you’ve been bitten by a tick, you have Lyme disease
Fact: Not all ticks carry the Lyme-spreading bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi (sorry for the long medical terminology), and not all bug- carrying ticks transmit Lyme disease.
Myth: If you’ve been bitten by a Lyme carrier you will get Lyme disease
Fact: in some cases you may be bitten and not get sick at all, other times you are briefly (or very briefly) ill, while other times it may become chronic (some of it depends on how healthy you are, or how strong your immune system is).
This link debunks 10 more common myths
Here are just a couple super simple ways to be cautious and aid in prevention.
1. Wear bug repellent.
2. Especially while walking, wear clothing like pants and socks. (Also an interesting fact: Ticks don’t bite through nylons).
3. Keep up with healthy eating and exercise, the healthier your body is, the easier it can protect you against illnesses like Lyme.
4. When possible, avoid wooded areas or tall grass.
5. After being outside check yourself (or your kids) for ticks. Some of there favourite spots are in your hair/hairline, behind your ears, back of knees....etc.
Here’s one more article from GLA about prevention: https://globallymealliance.org/education-awareness/be-tick-aware/