5 Ways To Keep Lyme Disease Out Of Your Yard
Dear friends around the world,
I like to provide educational information that helps people in their daily lives. Here is another post I am sharing for strictly educational purposes and I hope it will help. Prevention is the best but if infected, this post might help also. I hope no one is infected by this.
There are simple ways to keep disease-carrying ticks off of your property and away from your blood.
Ticks are nasty little critters. Not only is your blood their preferred food, but in the process of sucking it, they can transmit Lyme disease into your system. This infection can produce headache, fever, and other unpleasant symptoms. Without proper Lyme disease treatment, the disease can linger on for years with a wide range of side effects from sore joints and memory problems to panic attacks and acid reflux, according to the International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society. It’s important to know How To Avoid Ticks In The Woods, but what about at home? While some lawn-lovers turn to chemical interventions to keep ticks out of their yards, there are natural tick repellents that will help protect your yard—and you.
1. Mow the Lawn
The Organic Way To Mow Your Lawn begins by getting rid of tall grass and brush, especially at the edge of your lawn, to eliminate ticks’ favorite hangout spots. Also clean up leaf litter, and instead of tossing grass clippings and leaves into the garbage, add them to your compost pile and use the rich soil amendment in your garden. After they dry, grass clippings make great mulch that can help keep weeds from sprouting and help the soil retain water.
2. Irritate Their Feet
Ticks don’t like to cross paths lined with wood chips or gravel. Think of it like humans walking over glass—not pleasant. Place a gravel or wood chip buffer zone between lawns and wooded areas to help keep ticks from crossing onto your property.
3. Stack Woodpiles Neatly
Ticks can often be found crawling around sloppy woodpiles in shaded areas. If you keep the wood neatly stacked and in a spot that gets some sun, it’ll dry out faster. Remember, moist, wooded areas are inviting for ticks, while sunny, dry conditions are not.
4. Repel With A Plant
While the chemical DEET is a good chemical tick repellent, it contains ingredients that can harm both you and the environment. If you must use chemical tick repellents, be sure to follow the instructions closely, but if you want to skip it, there are ways to learn How To Stay Bug Free Without Dangerous DEET. For instance, since you can’t douse your yard with DEET—nor would you want to—you might try planting American beauty-berry bushes. They’re handsome plants and the leaves have been shown to repel ticks.
5. Employ A Tick Eater
It’s not an option for everyone, but consider investing in a few chickens. Raising chickens not only provides you with fresh eggs, but they’ll also peck away at ticks on your property. If you go this route, make sure you research the proper food and shelter these birds need. Robins and some other ground-feeding backyard birds eat ticks, too, so a bird-friendly yard may help keep the tick population down. However, unfortunately, some birds actually carry ticks, so be sure to keep areas near bird feeders and birdbaths clear of brush and debris so any hitchhiking ticks are less likely to survive.
ABOUT LYME DISEASE
The World Health Organisation (WHO) reports that the bacterium that causes Lyme Disease is found in forested areas of Asia, North-western, Central and Eastern Europe, although the non-profit Lyme Disease Association, Inc. (LDA) claims it has spread to other continents in over 80 countries. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that 300,000 people are diagnosed with Lyme disease in the USA every year.
Lyme Disease is caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi, a spirochete (identified in 1981 by Willy Burgdorfer) and is transmitted to humans through the bite of infected blacklegged ticks. Its name comes from the towns of Lyme and Old Lyme in Connecticut after a number of cases were diagnosed in 1975.
Typical symptoms include fever, headache, fatigue, and a characteristic skin rash called ‘erythema chronicm migrans’ which can resemble a bullseye target. But what makes it difficult to fully diagnose and gauge the true number of cases is that not everyone develops this rash or even remembers they were bitten by a tick.
This, in turn, can lead to diagnostic errors, especially since the bacterium that causes Lyme Disease is also called ‘The Great Imitator’ because it can spread to almost every part of the body and ‘imitate’ the symptoms of other diseases. It has been misdiagnosed as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, ALS, Alzheimer’s Disease, Arthritis, Multiple Sclerosis and other auto-immune disorders.
There is currently no vaccine available to prevent Lyme disease. The best way to prevent the condition is to be aware of the risks when you visit areas where ticks are found and to take sensible precautions.
Lyme Disease occurs regularly in Northern Hemisphere temperate regions. Apart from Europe and North America where this disease is prevalent, below are some cases worth noting:
Lyme disease in sub-Saharan Africa is presently unknown, but evidence indicates it may occur in humans in this region. The abundance of hosts and tick vectors would favor the establishment of Lyme infection in Africa. In East Africa, two cases of Lyme disease have been reported in Kenya.
B. burgdorferi sensu lato-infested ticks are being found more frequently in Japan, as well as in northwest China, Nepal, Thailand and far eastern Russia. Borrelia has also been isolated in Mongolia. Some cases have been diagnosed in Taiwan, Korea and India as well.
Australia, the Pacific Islands and New Zealand
Australia, the Pacific Islands and New Zealand have all reported isolated incidences of Lyme disease symptoms.
Owing to changing climate, the range of ticks able to carry Lyme disease has expanded from a limited area of Ontario to include areas of southern Quebec, Manitoba, northern Ontario, southern New Brunswick, south-west Nova Scotia and limited parts of Saskatchewan and Alberta, as well as British Columbia. Cases have been reported as far east as the island of Newfoundland.
A 2007 study suggests Borrelia burgdorferi infections are endemic to Mexico, from four cases reported between 1999 and 2000.
In South America, tick-borne disease recognition and occurrence is rising. In Brazil, a Lyme-like disease known as Baggio–Yoshinari syndrome was identified, caused by microorganisms that do not belong to the B. burgdorferi sensu lato complex and transmitted by ticks of the Amblyomma and Rhipicephalus genera. The first reported case of BYS in Brazil was made in 1992 in Cotia, São Paulo.
SYMPTOMS OF LYME DISEASE INFECTION
Lyme Disease is one of 28 conditions that can be spread by ticks, and if left undiagnosed or untreated, it can quickly spread throughout the organs, the central nervous system and the brain, sometimes even before the ‘bulls-eye’ rash appears. Couple this with misdiagnoses and a lack of proper treatment, and the Lyme Disease Association says the following symptoms can develop:
Several days or weeks after a bite from an infected tick, a patient usually experiences flu-like symptoms such as aches and pains in muscles and joints, low-grade fever, and/or fatigue. But no organ is spared. Other possible symptoms include:
- Jaw — pain, difficulty chewing
- Bladder — frequent or painful urination, repeated “urinary tract infection”
- Lung — respiratory infection, cough, asthma, pneumonia
- Ear — pain, hearing loss, ringing, sensitivity to noise
- Eyes — pain due to inflammation, sensitivity to light, sclerotic drooping of eyelid, conjunctivitis, blurring or double vision
- Throat — sore throat, swollen glands, cough, hoarseness, difficulty swallowing
- Neurological — headaches, facial paralysis, seizures, meningitis, stiff neck, burning, tingling, or prickling sensations, loss of reflexes, loss of coordination, MS-like syndrome.
- Stomach — pain, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, anorexia
- Heart — weakness, dizziness, irregular heartbeat, myocarditis, pericarditis, palpitations, heart blockage, enlarged heart, fainting, inflammation of muscle or membrane, shortness of breath, chest pain
- Joint — arthralgias or arthritis, muscle inflammation and pain
- Other Organs — liver infection, elevated liver enzymes, enlarged spleen, swollen testicles, irregular or ceased menses
- Neuropsychiatric — mood swings, irritability, poor concentration, cognitive loss, memory loss, loss of appetite, mental deterioration, depression, disorientation, sleep disturbance
- Pregnancy — miscarriage, premature birth, birth defects, stillbirth
- Skin — single or multiple rash, hives
The symptoms may occur in any combination, in any sequence, and over any time frame.
TREATMENT OF LYME DISEASE
The frontline of primary treatment for Lyme Disease is the use of the antibiotic Doxycycline for one to four weeks, which is effective against the Borrelia spirochete bacterium and other infections spread by ticks. Other antibiotics may be used for children under the age of 8 and women who are pregnant or nursing.
If caught early, the prognosis is usually good, and depends on how long the tick was attached. It takes 36 to 48 hours for the bacteria to move from the ticks body to its saliva. A single dose of doxycycline given within 72 hours after the removal of a tick that’s engorged or has been attached for 36 hours may reduce the risk of developing Lyme Disease.
However, late diagnosis and treatment results in a more dismal picture. In 2005, a meta-analysis which studied results from a number of studies concluded that some late-stage Lyme Disease patients present a level of symptoms and physical disability on par with patients suffering from congestive heart failure.
MORE ABOUT LYME DISEASE
To find out more about Lyme Disease, you can visit:
Founded in 1989, LymeDisease.org advocates nationally for quality accessible healthcare for patients with Lyme and other tick-borne diseases. We are committed to shaping health policy through advocacy, legal and ethical analysis, education, physician training and medical research.
2. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (USA)
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (USA) is one of the major operating components of the Department of Health and Human Services. CDC works 24/7 to protect America from health, safety and security threats, both foreign and in the U.S.
3. International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society (ILADS)
The International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society (ILADS) is a non-profit advocacy group which advocates for greater acceptance of the controversial and unrecognized diagnosis “chronic Lyme disease”. ILADS was formed by advocates for the recognition of “chronic lyme disease” including physicians, patients and laboratory personnel, and has published alternative treatment guidelines and diagnostic criteria due to the disagreement with mainstream consensus medical views on Lyme disease.
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