12 Chronic Lyme Disease Survivors Share How They Beat Their Illness

3. Kristin, 48

“It required a complete overhaul of my lifestyle, of my thinking, of my career, of my relationship to food, of my relationship to control. And many lessons later, I looked back one day and realized I no longer hurt.

I wanted to be able to eat whatever I wanted, and what I learned through my process of becoming well and recovering was that my body doesn’t do well with gluten and pesticides and non-organic foods. It wasn’t until I did a comprehensive elimination diet that I learned those things.

I have always had very high standards for myself. When I couldn’t meet those standards, it was hugely challenging for me, and moving through Lyme was an opportunity to learn to be patient and loving with myself regardless of the disability I was encountering.

I started off on antibiotics for several months, then herbs for several months…I eventually felt like I could stop all those provoking remedies and focus on detox. I got Lyme again about a year after I got well, but luckily by that time, I had learned about oxidation, which I found to be the most helpful, easiest, and least toxic remedy I know.”

4. Jenn, 43

“My path to today has been multi-pronged and involves a lifestyle and healing approach that is body, mind, and spirit. I eat a diet that is […] anti-inflammatory, and rich in nutrients. I continue to ensure that the detoxification pathways in my body are working optimally and that what I put in and on my body is as non-toxic as possible.

I take supplements that support the microbiome, provide the necessary vitamins, minerals and fats needed to thrive, and I recently went to the U.S. for stem cell transplant therapy (umbilical stem cells), which has been a life-giving treatment. Stem cells are known to repair damage to the body and cells, and knowing that Lyme disease essentially attacks and impacts every system in the body, I figured I had nothing to lose. It has been three months since the treatment, and I have seen a significant improvement in my energy, stamina, and cognitive function and decrease in my pain and neurological symptoms.

Additionally, I have ensured that I nurture my spiritual and mental health through somatic therapy, yoga, a dedicated meditation practice, creativity, and honoring and listening to what I need. This also includes moving past the comforts of isolation (yes, isolation can be comfortable when one is chronically ill) and spending time and connecting with people I care about and who care about me. Despite the struggles of chronic illness, it is the support of family and friends that has ensured I got to where I am today.”

5. Ally, 33

“At first, I tried oral antibiotics, pulsing 3-5 different antibiotics at a time, switching every few days. When that didn’t help, I turned to intramuscular antibiotic injections. After a few years, I became so sick and cognitively impaired, I had to be pulled out of college and move back in with my parents […] At this point, I got a port implanted into my chest and I began IV antibiotic treatments with an IV drip from home. I was so pain-ridden, I needed help to shower, dress, and cut up food/eat and couldn’t talk. This lasted for about four years. I was virtually a vegetable, unable to live a normal life. I slept for hours on end but was always completed depleted of energy. I’d sleep 14 hours at night and need to continue sleeping into each day. The pain was so extreme and never-ending, I thought I was dying.

In an attempt to heal, I’ve tried acupuncture, glutathione and iron injections, a strict diet, Meyer’s cocktails, depleting my body of all sources of vitamin D (which it is thought Lyme bugs feeds off of), drinking mass quantities of salt water, massage therapy, Chinese supplements, antivirals, and much, much more. After years in this state, I decided to stop all antibiotic treatment. It took a few years to recover and build up my extremely atrophied muscles. I entered into physical therapy to regain my strength and started treating my Lyme herbally with Samento (cat’s claw) and other supplements meant to support over-all health and wellness.

It was a long road to recovery, but eventually I was able to re-enroll in college and live semi-normally. Therapy, an amazing family, and a support system have all been essential in my ongoing physical and mental healing process.”

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