All About Ticks--- Yoga for Lyme Disease
With a recent rise in Lyme disease associated with affected deer ticks in the United States. I wanted to take the opportunity to discuss the history of Lyme disease, what exactly Lyme disease is, the effect that it has on your body and how the often painful physical symptoms can be treated with the practice of yoga.
Lyme disease was only discovered in 1975, when a group of mothers from Lyme, Connecticut, and surrounding areas found it strange that all of their children had been diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis. They brought their questioning to the attention of area researchers and upon study they discovered that what had appeared to be rheumatoid, was in fact an entirely different strain of bacteria, which in turn they dubbed, “Lyme disease”, in 1982.
Lyme disease is a bacterial illness that is spread via deer ticks who carry a particular bacteria in their stomachs called, “spirochete” or by it's scientific name of Borrelia Burgdoferi, which causes the Lyme disease, upon a tick bite. The illness then effects your body entirely. Everything from your skin, joints, nervous system and heart. Many patients have even experienced partial facial paralysis. Lymes is typically treated with the use of antibiotics, although many are currently turning to alternative medication such as oils or homeopathic remedies for treatment and cures.
If you have found a deer tick on you, it is important to remove it safely, ensuring you have removed the full tick with head intact, and then cleaning with wound either with an antiseptic such as rubbing alcohol or a natural alternative such as tea tree oil. You need to begin watching carefully for symptoms to occur, they could take anywhere from a couple of days to several weeks, so be sure to monitor carefully. Most researchers claim to watch for a ring around the bite that looks like a rash and slowly grows over time. Most people who develop Lymes experience flu-like symptoms such as body aches, fever, chills, and extreme fatigue. Although with my Lymes, I was unaware I had even been bitten and did not know until I began getting the flu-like symptoms and went to see my physician. If you have been bitten, take necessary precaution, and listen to your body.
Upon diagnosis, you will most likely begin to feel tremendous pain in your body. Your joints will ache, you will have migraine-like headaches, it will be difficult to lay in bed, or even get out of bed. So now, is the time to begin to find relaxation and regain peace within your body with the benefits of yoga. And you don't even have to get out of bed to do it. There are some lying positions in which you can incorporate to bring some ease into your aching joints and muscles, begin with Modified Mountain pose (lying down), ease into Bridge bringing your knees into your chest, slowly move to Reclining Big Toe pose, then Seated Staff pose, and finish Lotus, but be sure to be much more relaxed with your ankles and legs. This will get the blood flowing through your body, you will be incorporating your deep cleansing breaths, and the poses can easily be modified to suit the needs of your situation based upon your pain levels.
Practicing your deep breathing is also going to be extremely beneficial at this time. Some yoga poses that will help, providing your ability to stand with comfort, are Pigeon, Fish, Bow, Cobra, and Boat, and are all great in their ability to stimulate your thymus gland and will also help ease your aches and pains while also bringing to balance your breath and promoting relaxation. If you experience any dizziness doing any of these standing poses, stop immediately, lie down and rest. You can always refer to the lying down sequence and still experience the same benefits and deep breathing.
Another note, make sure you are getting adequate amounts of water as well during this time as water will lubricate your joints and make the pain a little more easier to bear.
The road to recovery in terms of Lyme disease can be a long, difficult and often painful one. Be sure to keep your mind free of stress, as your body will follow suit. Ensuring that you do and repeat this yoga sequence and also bringing in poses that incorporate your deep breathing to promote relaxation will help your path tremendously, as you are bringing something peaceful and positive into something that can easily be construed as negative. Bring health and well-being into your time of illness, and your recovery will be much easier!