Lyme Disease

Perhaps there’s nothing more disheartening than to have a medical professional dismiss or question the symptoms we’re experiencing because we don’t fit within a neat and tidy diagnosis. Worse still, many medical practitioners dismiss Lyme disease as they believe it doesn’t exist in Australia. This is slowly changing as the sheer number of people affected by the debilitating symptoms of Lyme are proving that tick/vector-borne diseases most certainly do exist in Australia.

Perhaps Australia has its own particular vector-borne disease which manifests with Lyme-like symptoms, but regardless, we know many people are suffering greatly with debilitating, disheartening and devastating symptoms that stop people in their tracks and can lay them low for weeks, months or years if left untreated.

What is Lyme Disease?

  • Lyme disease is a tick-borne infection caused by the Borrelia bacteria that causes a characteristic skin rash and a range of debilitating symptoms.
  • People are often unaware that the symptoms they’re experiencing are related to a previous bite from a tick.
  • Medical authorities dismiss locally-acquired Lyme disease as they believe it doesn’t exist in Australia. This is slowly changing as the sheer number of people affected by the debilitating symptoms of Lyme are proving that tick/vector-borne diseases most certainly do exist in Australia.
  • There is a continuing risk of Lyme disease for overseas travellers.

Symptoms

  • In early-stages, close to the time of tick bite, you may see a pink or red rash that starts as a small red spot which gradually spreads in a larger circle with a bulls-eye appearance.
  • You may also experience fever, headaches, tiredness and joint pains.
  • If left untreated, Lyme disease can cause severe disability as the infection can spread through the bloodstream and cause infection in the brain and membranes surrounding the brain, infection in or around the heart, joint pain and inflammation, and long-term neurological symptoms.
  • As early-stage diagnosis in Australia is difficult, most diagnosed cases in Australia have progressed to the late stage.

Immediate help

  • Speak with your GP or other trusted and qualified health professional. If your GP dismisses your symptoms, find another GP who is willing to get your blood tested for signs of infection.
  • For crisis support, call Lifeline on 13 11 14
  • Lyme Disease Association of Australia http://www.lymedisease.org.au
  • Beyondblue website contains many useful forums and resources https://www.beyondblue.org.au/

Treatment

If detected early, most cases of Lyme disease can be treated successfully with antibiotics.

Many factors contribute to a positive healing outcome for people with Lyme-like symptoms. These factors help you begin or continue your journey of recovery:

  • Addressing physical as well as the emotional distress, isolation and frustration that inevitably accompany a chronic illness
  • Improving nutrition, exercise and sleep levels along with other healthy lifestyle practices
  • Equipping people with guidance in managing the emotional rollercoaster of exhaustion, frustration and isolation
  • Meditation and living mindfully can stimulate your immune system to function optimally
  • Rest and patience are two essential components of recovery

It can take time to discover the best treatment for each person, so it’s best to work closely with your (holistic) GP or other trusted and qualified health professional to find what works for you.

How Quest for Life can help

It takes strength and resilience to overcome Lyme disease and Quest for Life can help through our 5-day residential Quest for Life program.

At our Quest for Life program you’ll be nourished, educated and supported to adopt a healthy lifestyle which creates an environment for profound healing.

Quest for Life knows how to help: our research results show that participants experience a 28% increase in quantified mental wellbeing after attending a program and that this improvement increases over time.

Chemical-free environment

At Quest we recognise that many people with Lyme-like symptoms have chemical sensitivities. No chemicals are used in the grounds or buildings at Quest to ensure a safe and healthy environment for people with life-threatening or chronic illnesses.

Toolkit

Some of these practices can help you to calm your mind and improve your wellbeing and can be found on our Toolkit page:

  • Keys to help you sleep better
  • Meditation practices

Petrea King's Podcasts may be helpful and can be found on our Podcast page:

  • Tony Delroy Nightlife – Beyond Chronic Pain
  • Relax better and reduce stress using mindfulness
  • Eating well in times of stress

Wellbeing resources

Quest for Life can help educate you about how to create an environment for profound healing of Lyme disease through our Quest for Life program. For program dates, visit our website or call 1300-941-488 for more information.

Fill in the Contact Form below and one of our Program Advisors will contact you to answer any questions you might have or to ascertain the most appropriate program for your needs.

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