Lyme disease – also called Lyme borreliosis – can be frightening, but when you learn the facts about this condition, you can better avoid any contagion and react appropriately if you do get infected.
Lyme Disease Symptoms
Lyme disease is a bacterial infection spread through the bites of infected ticks, and is most widely spread from early spring through the summer months. Incubation periods can vary from just a few days to several months, though the most common incubation is 1-2 weeks. While different people will exhibit different symptoms depending on their health, age, the severity of their infection and other factors, typical Lyme disease symptoms include…
- Fever and chills
- Headache and stiff neck
- Fatigue or listlessness
- Joint pain or arthritis
- Stiff or sore muscles
- Swollen lymph nodes
- Shortness of breath
- Tingling in the hands and feet
The most common symptom is a unique type of rash – a circular patch that gradually expands and creates a bulls-eye pattern. The red parts of the skin may be warm, but are rarely itchy.
Not everyone will show every symptom if they are infected with Lyme disease, and some people show no significant symptoms at all. Because most of these symptoms are rather vague and can apply to many different conditions, a blood test will often be necessary to properly diagnose Lyme disease. If you have been in a tick-infested area prior to developing these symptoms, or if you know you’ve had a tick bite recently, it is best to consult a physician as soon as any symptoms appear.