Mar 20, 2015

Feeling Lost With Lyme Brain

Yesterday I drove to my friend's house to pick up my weekly egg order.  She has chickens and the yummiest eggs around.  I drove out of habit while talking to my 7 year old son in the back seat. I pulled into the driveway and realized that I didn't recognize the house.

I was startled at first but decided to go up to the house anyway, I figured my son would have told me if we were at the wrong house.  As I continued up the walk I noticed the cooler wasn't outside in its usual place and my doubt grew.   I was so relieved when my friend came to the door but I still felt uneasy about the whole episode.

I haven't had much "Lyme brain" in the past few years but with the transition to homeopathics I have had a few episodes.

Early on with my Lyme infection I had Lyme brain so bad it was difficult to function normally in my every day life.  I got lost, I couldn't remember past events or conversations, I couldn't remember people or names of acquaintances and even people I went to church with.  I had great difficulty understanding what I read, I felt as if a page looked like a big jumble of dancing words.  I couldn't perform simple math tasks and I had great difficulty figuring out how to accomplish simple daily tasks.

Lyme brain is real, it's called Neurological Lyme, it's frightening and it can be severe enough to render a person incapable of reading, comprehending what is being spoken, working and functioning normally in life.

It's particularly difficult to identify Lyme brain in children especially if you don't already know they have Lyme Disease.  They could appear to be uninterested in school or reading, they may seem like they're daydreaming and some children may become frustrated and act out in anger.  Children may not know how to explain to their parents what they're experiencing because word recall is very difficult. 

I've read that when a person has neurological Lyme an MRI can reveal white matter on their brain.  This is very similar to a patient with MS (Multiple Sclerosis) which is why Lyme is often misdiagnosed as MS.  If you'd like to learn more about Lyme brain and see fascinating MRI pictures you can visit the Columbia University Medical Medical Center.

Neurological Lyme also causes dementia like symptoms similar to Alzheimer's and some speculate that untreated Lyme disease can cause Alzheimer's.  

My Neurological Lyme symptoms began soon after my other physical symptoms of Lyme Disease appeared.  My Neuro Lyme symptoms increased and became more severe for about a year and began to clear up once I had been on high doses of antibiotics for at least another year.  I continued to have mild symptoms but they didn't keep me from my daily activities.

I get Lyme brain every once in awhile now, or maybe it's just that I'm getting older, but I can still blame it on Lyme right?  My kids laugh when I ask a question that I've already asked 3 times before and especially when my sentences don't make sense or I have trouble with word recall.  Sometimes I walk around the house pretending I know what I'm doing when in reality I can't remember why I was headed to a particular room.

So what can be done about Lyme brain?  Antibiotics cleared a lot of my symptoms but not so much for one of my daughters.  Hers began to clear when she started the homeopathic protocol.  There are herbs and other supplements that can be very helpful too.  If you're seeing a doctor who understands Lyme be sure to ask what is best for you.

Want to learn more about Lyme Neuroborreliosis?  Visit these links below.

Lyme Disease Action: Neurology and Psychiatry
Columbia University Medical Center: Signs and Symptoms
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke: Lyme Disease Information Page
Neurological Complications of Lyme Disease

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