Children at Greatest Risk of Lyme Disease

I found this interesting article in the online version of the Gazette (Frederick County, MD). 

 “Why Kids are at Higher Risk for Lyme Disease, and What You Can Do to Prevent It

By Christine Miller Ford

Because Lyme disease can leave a previously healthy person with debilitating problems for years, experts say the best course of action is to prevent getting it in the first place.

The disease is spread when an infected tick attaches to a person. Initially, it can cause symptoms such as a fever, fatigue and achiness that mimic a standard viral infection. Sometimes, a bull’s-eye-shaped rash will also appear.

If untreated, Lyme disease can lead to joint pain, arthritis, mood and memory problems, neurological problems and other serious complications, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”

The article points out that children have a greater risk of getting Lyme disease becuase they play outdoors and roll around on the ground, parents sometimes place playsets near the edge of the lawn next to higher grass, and because ticks are small and hard to detect. 

To reduce the risk of Lyme disease, the article suggests “When walking through the woods or in tall grass, children should stay on the trails and should not roll or play in the leaves on the ground.”  I would add that parents should consider having their yard treated to kill any ticks that are present.  

To read the rest of the article click here.

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