Lyme disease is an infection caused by the bacteria that is transmitted through the bite of an infected black-legged tick or deer tick. Borrelia burgdorferi bacteria commonly infects animals such as birds, small rodents, and deer. When ticks bite the infected animals, they may become infected themselves, and then continue to pass the infection on to other animals, including human hosts. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the chances of getting Lyme disease is dependent on the kind of tick, where and when the bite occurred, and how long the tick was attached. Black-legged ticks must be attached for a minimum of twenty-four hours to transmit Lyme disease.
The Symptoms Of Lyme Disease
The symptoms of Lyme disease vary and may take anywhere from three days to a month to take effect. The early signs include chills, fatigue, fever, headache, muscle and joint pain, swollen lymph nodes, and in seventy to eighty percent of cases, a red and round rash. The rash may feel warm to the touch but seldom feels itchy or painful. It tends to expand over a period of days, growing to approximately twelve inches in diameter. As the infection progresses, other symptoms can occur including new rashes, arthritis, dizziness, heart palpitations, loss of muscle tone in the face, inflammation of the brain and spinal cord, and numbness, pain or tingle in the hands and feet.