Garden_113195133657Happy graduation, sunshine, and gardening season. Along with enjoying the great outdoors would you like some Stop Bugging Me tips for protection against those nasty backyard bugs, specifically mosquitoes, black flies and ticks?

I was the mosquito magnet that my brothers used as bait to attract the mosquitos away from them! Once I counted more than 50 bites… on each leg. Since those days, I have discovered some simple remedies to keep myself fairly bite-proof.

Mosquitoes and black flies are easy:

  1. Avoid eating lots of bananas as the scent in your blood draws bugs.
  2. Take extra vitamin B and garlic – they serve as systemic bug repellants to change your scent.
  3. Before going outside, avoid using cologne, hair spray, or products with sweet smells.
  4. When outside, use natural bug repellant spray and citronella candles.
  5. If you get bitten, wipe the area with apple cider vinegar. The bite will disappear like magic!

Ticks are another story. Those blood-sucking mini armored tanks are nature’s dirty needle. Lyme disease is epidemic in New England. My husband and I were both misdiagnosed with this nasty disease, along with so many other people we know. The statistics are astounding: 60% of deer ticks are infected with Borrelia burgdorfen, the bacteria that causes Lyme disease. In 2013 New Hampshire had the highest incidence of Lyme disease in the United States with over 1,700 new cases reported; yet it is estimated that one in three cases of Lyme are misdiagnosed and unreported. The residual effects of chronic Lyme disease are debilitating and devastating.

A few summers ago, my husband had removed several ticks over the season, and was experiencing the classic Lyme symptoms of joint pain, neck pain, headache, lethargy, excessive sweating, and had a bite mark with a rash, yet he was diagnosed with the flu. When the symptoms persisted, he was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis and given a packet of steroids. Four months later, after a major blackout episode, I accompanied him to the doctor and insisted that he be tested and treated for Lyme. By then, his chronic Lyme had triggered a cardiac incident that lead to a surgical defibrillator implant. Within months, he developed a rare autoimmune condition with the long-term sentence of strong steroids and chemo drugs. We are working with a Naturopathic Doctor to find a cure.

In my case, although I had been working sleeveless in the garden and had a bite mark with a rash, the doctor called it shingles and put me on narcotics for the potential pain I might have. Continuing with obvious Lyme symptoms and a then recognizable bullseye rash, yet no shingles pain, I returned. This doctor wanted to do a mammogram because the rash was on my breast! I had to insist on being tested for Lyme, which of course was positive. At that time I gave up on the Medical Doctors and consulted a Naturopathic Doctor.

Most of the medical community downplays the devastating issues society is having with tick-borne illnesses. To be thoroughly evaluated and treated for Lyme disease and associated co-infections, one should consult a specialist – specifically a Naturopathic Doctor, a Holistic Doctor or Holistic Nurse Practitioner. When pressured, the average Medical Doctor might prescribe a 30-day round of the antibiotic doxycycline. Yet that is rarely enough to treat the co-infections. The myriad of chronic symptoms from the co-infections that coexist with Lyme are usually misidentified.

Jennifer Edwards, DVM from Ponemah Veterinary Hospital says that any time a dog comes in with certain unwell symptoms, the first thing they do is test for Lyme. It is a simple test and most often, it is positive. When will the medical community get on board with this epidemic? One must be forceful, diligent and insistent about being tested for Lyme as a human. Remember, it is YOUR body after all.

Many clients are referred to me for hypnosis because they experience the chronic symptoms of unusual fears, brain fog, low energy, and the feeling that there is something wrong with their mind. I can certainly help them to get past their fears, feel better about themselves, and help their mind to focus, but I recommend they be evaluated by a qualified health practitioner who is proficient with appropriate Lyme treatment.

Here are Some Prevention Tips for Ticks:

  1. Place “Tick Tubes” around your garden. They contain pyrethrum-soaked cotton balls which the chipmunks and mice take back to their nests. The pyrethrum is harmless to animals, yet kills ticks in the early nymph stages.
  2. Use Seresto collars for your pets. They are expensive, yet last many months and work wonders to keep the ticks from attacking your pets and hitching rides into your home.
  3. When working outside, keep covered, tuck your pants into your socks, wear clothes that are soaked in repellant, or spray repellant on skin and around openings of clothing.
  4. When coming inside, immediately remove yard clothes and do a tick check. They can take a while before they bite, so take a hot shower.
  5. Wash your clothes and dry them on high heat. The ticks may survive the water, but rarely survive the heat of the dryer.
  6. If you find an attached tick, use tweezers to remove it, gently twisting and pulling to get the head out. Put it in a plastic bag. Wash the area and your hands thoroughly.
  7. Contact your naturopathic doctor to discuss antibiotic treatment and you may want to have the tick tested for Lyme-related disease.

For more information, go to the favorite links section of my website for some qualified Lyme specialists. You can also contact the NH Department of Health and Human Services, Bureau of Infectious Disease Control at 603-271-4496 or 800-852-3345 x4496.

Take control and stop those nasty ticks from bugging you. Use smart prevention and take immediate action to maintain your health from this epidemic of tick-borne disease. Take good care of yourself and be your own advocate. If you have symptoms, reach out to those that are knowledgeable to help you recover.

Meanwhile, enjoy the summer sunshine…just be aware and be safe.

Many Blessings,