The UK Health Security Agency (UKSHA) has issued a warning for Lyme disease as England has seen a surge in the number of cases and people have started to spend more time outdoors. UKSHA’s latest figures reveal that England saw a surge in Lyme disease cases from April to September 2023 with 882 cases being reported. However, the previous year, a total of 635 cases were reported in the country.

A report in states that more than 70 per cent of these cases were reported from the regions of South West, South East and London. UKHSA says, “The number of laboratory-confirmed cases presented in this report is therefore likely an underestimate of the true burden of acute Lyme disease in England.”

Singer Avril Lavigne spoke about her battle with Lyme disease. On the other hand, former “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” star Yolanda Hadid spoke about her diagnosis. Her daughter and model, Bella Hadid, also suffers from Lyme disease and has shared how it impacted her life. Actor and comedian, Ben Stiller has also been affected by the condition. Shania Twain said that she too suffered from Lyme disease which led to changes in her voice. This happened because of the nerve damage that was caused by the disease.

What is Lyme disease?

Lyme disease is a bacterial infection caused by the bite of infected black-legged ticks, also known as deer ticks. The disease is prevalent in regions with dense woods, grassy areas and high levels of deer population, particularly in North America and Europe. If the condition is left untreated, it can cause severe symptoms, which can thereby affect the joints, heart and nervous system.

Symptoms of Lyme Disease

Symptoms of Lyme disease depend on the stage of the condition.

Stage 1

The early symptoms of Lyme disease start to appear within 3 to 30 days after a tick bite. At this stage, the disease has limited symptoms and hence is called early localised disease. Symptoms of Stage 1 Lyme Disease are:

Rash that starts to change its shape and size.

Joint stiffness



Swollen lymph nodes

Muscle aches and pains

Extreme tiredness

Stage 2

If the condition remains untreated, it can get worse. Stage 2 is often more serious and widespread. It is called early disseminated disease. Symptoms of Stage 2 Lyme Disease are:

  • Rashes on other parts of the body
  • Pain that starts from the back and hips and spreads to the legs
  • Neck pain or stiffness
  • Painful swelling in tissues of the eye or eyelid
  • Muscle weakness on one or both sides of the face
  • Pain, numbness or weakness in the hands or feet
  • Immune-system activity in heart tissue that causes irregular heartbeats
  • Immune-system activity in eye nerves that causes pain or vision loss.

Stage 3

According to Mayo Clinic, “In the third stage, you may have symptoms from the earlier stages and other symptoms. This stage is called late disseminated disease.”

The most common condition of this stage is arthritis in large joints, particularly the knees. One might have pain, swelling or stiffness that may last for a long time.

Preventive measures of Lyme disease

One of the best ways to prevent Lyme disease is to prevent getting tick bites. You can also use tick repellents that have DEET, picaridin, or IR3535 in them. Also, when you’re going outside, make sure to wear protective clothing; long sleeves, long pants tucked into socks, and closed shoes as these can help keep ticks away. Choose light-coloured clothes as it is easier to spot ticks on them. Lastly, when you come back from outside, make sure to take a shower as it can remove any unattached ticks.

2024-04-03T04:26:50Z dg43tfdfdgfd