Bodies in Motion: An Athlete’s Journey Through Lyme Disease - Part 3
By Rebecca Parsons
"Run the race before you with endurance." -Hebrews 12:1
I think of my battle against Lyme as a marathon, not a sprint. While it would be nice to go to one doctor's appointment or take one pill and be cured, that is not the case. Instead, I must undergo months upon months of a wide variety of treatments in hopes of someday reaching the finish line. And when I do, it will be worth it a million times over.
While I'm not fully better yet, I've certainly been improving and I'm getting more water time as a result. Aside from antibiotics, all of my treatments have been natural, homeopathic treatments that are proven to help with a wide array of ailments. Here are a few of the most helpful for me. Hopefully these will help some of you get more SUP time, too!
Salt. While I obviously believe in the healing power of the ocean, I have also installed a salt lamp in my room and take regular Epsom salt baths. Salt lamps are said to cleanse the air, reduce allergy symptoms, increase energy levels, neutralize electromagnetic radiation, improve sleep, and improve mood and concentration. I try to take Epsom salt bathes a few times a week, especially after intense treatments and when I'm herxing (negatively reacting to bacteria dying off). The salt is said to pull toxins from the body and helps relieve sore joints and muscles.
Glutathione. Glutathione is a naturally occurring antioxidant in the body that is a major threat to toxins as it neutralizes free radicals, enhances the immune system, and detoxifies the liver. As I have always done a glutathione push in companion to another IV, it is hard for me to pinpoint the direct results of the antioxidant. But I have nothing negative to say about it and based on all the research I've read in support of it, I am a believer in its healing effects.
IV Drips. I make regular doctor's visits for IV drips: saline, vitamin mixtures, and curcumin. I do the saline because my cells aren't properly absorbing water, the vitamins for immune support, and the curcumin to reduce inflammation. The curcumin is by far my favorite as it is pain free and boosts my energy levels. I also tried ultraviolet blood irradiation therapy once, but found it to be extremely painful and hadn't heard of it having huge successes.
Diet. I follow an anti-inflammatory diet meaning no gluten, dairy, or sugar. I also avoid all processed foods and buy organic as often as possible. The diet can be difficult at times, but the idea is to starve the bacteria. It is also extremely healthy and is a diet everyone should consider following.
Vitamins. You name it, I probably take it. I take about 30 pills a day, which I think is absurd, but I also have only gotten sick once in the past two years, aside from the Lyme. So, worth it.
Energy Treatments. I am fully aware that this sounds like some crazy voodoo treatment, but when you've been sick for so long you're willing to try anything. I tried energy treatments at a couple doctor's offices, but ended up buying the iMRS 2000 to do at home. From what I understand, it uses magnetic frequencies that excite the bacteria into the bloodstream and heal the body. I do the mat twice a day for 24-minutes, followed by 5 to 7 minutes with The Zapper. The Zapper is a handheld device that essentially electrocutes small pathogens in the body, such as the Lyme bacteria. I have found that I have difficulty sleeping if I do the mat near bedtime, which in my book means it must be doing something positive.
Antibiotics. In order for the antibiotics to be effective, you must work with a Lyme literate doctor who knows how to properly rotate the antibiotics. I did three cycles of twenty days on Azithromycin, three days on Tindamax, and then four days off, with a Penicillin shot every ten days. The antibiotics often made me feel bad, especially the Tindamax, but that is supposedly a good sign as it means the bacteria are dying off. I believe the antibiotics are the most crucial of all the treatments.
*Treatments vary based on individual symptoms. I am lucky enough to have no co-infections aside from chronic Epstein Barr. My main symptom is fatigue with little to no joint pain.