Lyme bacteria are called spirochetes. These bacteria are like party animals. They like to travel to different parts, have a good time, wreaking havoc on that location. They don’t give you much warning when or where they are ready to make an appearance.
One week they may gather in your knee joints, causing inflammation so bad it becomes painful when adjusting positions or trying to lift your leg. The next week the spirochetes may travel to your back and neck. You may feel so sore it becomes challenging to move around. Getting out of bed becomes a long, complicated process.
On top of the pain, the spirochetes’ effects can make you feel as if you have concrete tied to your body parts. Your arms and legs can feel heavy, and everything you do is done in slow motion to avoid making the pain worse.
The pain associated with Lyme disease is no joke. It can be devastating. That’s why pain management is crucial.
To learn more about Lyme disease pain management, it’s vital first to understand the difference between acute and chronic pain. Knowing this can help you and your doctor create the best plan for treating your pain.
Acute vs. Chronic Lyme Disease Pain
The first two months after you were exposed to the bacteria, Borrelia burgdorferi, defines acute Lyme disease. If diagnosed and treated for Lyme within the first eight weeks, you are treated for acute Lyme disease symptoms.
The symptoms can include flu-like symptoms, headaches, fever, aches and pains, sweats, and fatigue. Some patients may experience Bell’s Palsey and a red rash, but some don’t. Because these symptoms can be misdiagnosed for many other ailments, Lyme disease often goes untreated, leading to chronic Lyme disease symptoms.
Chronic symptoms can mimic acute symptoms; only they last longer, and the pain is worse because the spirochetes have had time to multiply and spread throughout the body. Additional symptoms can include confusion, difficulty concentrating, extreme fatigue, speech errors, disorientation, anxiety, and depression.
Further, some experience joint swelling and pain. No joints are off-limits. Nausea, shortness of breath, sexual dysfunction, weight changes, and the list goes on and on. A Lyme disease symptoms checklist has been created to guide you and help explain your symptoms to your doctor.
Importance of Finding the Right Doctor
If you have Lyme disease, you must find a doctor who specializes in treating Lyme disease successfully. If your current doctor is treating your symptoms with medication and only using the two Lyme tests commonly used (ELISA and the Western Block), then you need a new doctor.
These tests are inaccurate much of the time, simply because the spirochetes do a pretty good job of hiding inside your body. If they are hiding when you take the test, your test can come back negative for Lyme disease.
A Lyme literate doctor has other ways to test and confirm a Lyme disease diagnosis. They have the tools and equipment not only to test you but treat your symptoms in their office.
Most importantly, Lyme literate doctors can develop the right treatment plan, with your input, that will ease your symptoms.
Treatment plans are crucial, as they allow you to set goals and measure your progress along the way. With your doctor’s help, you can make changes to your treatment if needed, and you have access to many alternative therapies that can eliminate the Lyme bacteria in your system.
Alternative Treatments Work
Lyme disease doctors understand the pain you feel and agree that it can be life-altering. They want to give you back a healthy and happy life.
Your Lyme doctor will create a pain treatment plan based on your history of pain. Since Lyme disease is individualized, your treatment should also be. There is no one-size-fits-all treatment for Lyme.
Most Lyme disease pain is connected to a nerve supply that could be injured in some way. If the area surrounding the nerve supply is stimulated, the pain will occur. To alleviate this type of pain, your doctor may choose Neural Therapy.
- Neural Therapy
Neural therapy has been shown to offer immediate relief for pain sufferers. Receiving treatment involves your doctor injecting an anesthetic into the area feeling pain. The theory is that the tissues in your body surrounding the nerves affected by spirochetes have electrochemical functions.
With Lyme, these may be disturbed. An anesthetic can eliminate the effects caused by the disturbance, your pain.
For both acute and chronic pain sufferers, cleaning your blood can flush out Lyme bacteria. One process is called Therapeutic Apheresis. Another is Plasmapheresis.
With each treatment, either your blood or plasma is removed with a particular machine. Then, donated, healthy blood or plasma is introduced back into your system, also with the doctor’s apheresis equipment.
- Biofilm Eradication
Biofilms are protective casings where spirochetes, or bacteria, can hide. If biofilms develop, they can make treatments like antibiotics useless. Therefore, it is crucial to eliminate biofilms and prevent the protection of bacteria within your blood.
Biofilm eradication protocols help in the elimination process by combining anthracycline derivatives and antimicrobials that attack the inside and the outside of cells. This may sound complicated, but it is a simple act that prevents DNA and RNA synthesis by breaking them down until they can no longer reproduce. This protocol helps to rid the body of the entire biofilm, not just a portion of it like many antibiotics do.
Pain Management: Where to Start
Other pain management treatments can work alone or in combination to help you find relief. You and your Lyme doctor will create a unique plan that meets your symptoms.
Start your pain management journey by finding the best doctor, documenting your pain symptoms in great detail; continue researching Lyme disease; join a Lyme disease support group online or in-person; become your own best advocate.
You do not have to live the rest of your life in pain. There is a treatment for you.