With tick bites on the rise and Lyme Disease spreading west, it’s important to talk about aspects of the disease other than prevention, like Post-treatment Lyme Disease Syndrome (PTLDS). Formerly known as Chronic Lyme Disease, researchers are trying to figure out how to combat PTLDS, which affects 10% of Lyme Disease patients. One lead? Fighting inflammation. The cause of PTLDS seems to be an inflammatory particle shed by the Lyme Disease bacteria, so supporting the body with anti-inflammatory antioxidants may be helpful.
Is it PTLDS? The change from Chronic Lyme Disease to PTLDS occured to help stop confusion—not all recurring Lyme Disease symptoms are PTLDS. You can get Lyme Disease more than once, so it’s important to rule out an active Lyme Disease infection. You can also get lasting damage from Lyme Disease (usually in the joints, but in prolonged cases the organs), so prompt treatment is important.
Enter antioxidants: for the 10% of people with PTLDS, how the body reacts to inflammation is the issue. While more targeted treatments might be discovered to combat all aspects of Lyme Disease, we can focus on the tools we have now that we know help the body heal and combat inflammation.
It’s the old stand-bys: rest, healthy eating, a little exercise (which triggers a healthy immune response to inflammation) and support from antioxidants, which supply the body with the tools it needs and helps balance against inflammation.