Anyone living with Lyme disease knows that the physical (and emotional) symptoms can often feel unbearable. However, there are ways to improve the quality of life for Lyme disease patients. There are some products as simple as an essential oil or a hot water bottle that can actually help give them a great deal of relief. It can be challenging to figure out how to treat Lyme disease symptoms because they can be so varied between individuals. So, here’s a list of 10 products that Lyme disease patients can try out to help improve their day-to-day lives.
Hot water bottles
One of the cheapest ways to relieve nerve and muscular pain is to purchase a hot water bottle or heating pad. These allow the patient to apply heat directly to the area of their body where they’re experiencing pain. For widespread pain, an extra-large heating pad can soothe a larger area of aches. For more localised pain (especially in the hands), hand warmers are a cheap and portable way to soothe joint pain.
Curd packs or green cabbage packs
Need an inexpensive option for treating joint pain? Curd packs or green cabbage packs have been shown to relieve aching joints. You can check out this how-to guide for instructions on how to put together a cabbage pack at home. A lot of Lyme disease patients also recommend using Tiger Balm, which is a long-lasting topical cream that can help with muscle tissue pain and stiffness.
Lyme disease patients can experience complications with their liver. In order to support better liver function, individuals can try liver or yarrow compresses. Here are some instructions on how to properly apply a liver compress. The best part is that it’s easy to put together using items that are probably already on hand at home (a compress towel, hot water bottle, etc.).
A lot of essential oils can be helpful when treating symptoms of Lyme disease. Jasmine oil, used in aromatherapy, has shown to increase the effect of GABA, which causes a boost in mood and a more relaxed state. Many people with Lyme disease suffer from anxiety, so this oil can calm the nervous system without causing drowsiness. Patients can apply drops of jasmine oil directly to their skin or keep the scent present throughout a room with the use of a diffuser.
Peppermint is another essential oil that can be beneficial, especially for headaches. With the local application of the oil on the skin, cold and pressure receptors are excited, in turn inhibiting the effects of pain nerve messengers. This can lead to fewer headaches for Lyme disease patients. Peppermint oil can also be helpful in fighting nausea (another common symptom of the condition).
Taking a bath can have several healing properties. Cold water baths can help with fatigue (because it revitalises the body and stimulates blood flow), while warm baths can be soothing and relaxing. Many Lyme disease patients also recommend using Epsom salts in a bath, which can relieve muscle aches and pains.
Having a variety of anti-nausea foods on hand can be helpful for Lyme disease sufferers. Foods like carrot/apple mash and chicken broth can be soothing to the stomach, and ginger tea or candies and peppermint tea have also shown to have anti-nausea properties. If the patient is experiencing a lack of appetite, eating bitter foods (such as kale, broccoli, cranberries, coffee, green tea etc.) can help boost their appetite. If bitter foods are not tolerated or desired, a bitter tincture may help to stimulate digestion and appetite.
CBD (or cannabidiol) has grown in popularity recently because of its many health benefits. CBD is present in cannabis, but because it doesn’t contain THC, it won’t have psychogenic actions. CBD oils (or edible products like gummies) have been shown to reduce pain, lower inflammation and help with anxiety and insomnia. Many people with chronic illnesses (like Lyme disease) are more frequently relying on CBD products to help alleviate their symptoms.
Having a comfortable contour pillow can be a great way to ward off headaches and migraines that go along with Lyme disease. Tension headaches can occur if your neck is at an awkward angle while you sleep. Therefore, having a pillow that supports your neck and head can be key to having fewer headaches and no more stiff neck when waking up in the morning.
Blue-light blocking glasses
Lots of people with Lyme disease report having insomnia or difficulties sleeping. One way to help with that is to invest in some blue-light blocking glasses. These are great for people who are looking at screens (TV, phone, computer) before bedtime because they help block out the blue light that can deter sleep. Taking over-the-counter melatonin (a natural sleep aid) can also be beneficial if a person is having trouble falling or staying asleep. (In certain countries, melatonin may not be purchased without prescription. In these cases, supplements containing 5-HTP from Griffonia simplificonia may also improve sleep due to mood impacts.)
Of course, Make Well distributes a wide range of natural supplements (more than 200!) that can provide relief with everything from gastrointestinal issues to a lack of energy. So if you’re not sure how to support someone with Lyme disease, try recommending the products listed above or some Make Well supplements to help alleviate their symptoms. Just your willingness to help can often improve the quality of life for Lyme disease patients.