Healthy Options 5/1/24: Lyme Disease & other tick borne illness- update for 2024

Host/Producer: Rhonda Feiman
Petra Hall
Technical assistance: Joel Mann & Amy Browne

Healthy Options: For Well-being & Being Well

This month:

– Why is prevention the best medicine when it comes to ticks? Why is it important to keep ticks off of us, to begin with?
– What is a tick borne infection?  What is Lyme disease, and other tick-borne illness?
– What are the different kinds of ticks, and the diseases they may carry? Do ticks spread bacteria or viruses?
– What is a co-infection?
– What tick found in Maine, can cause severe to fatal illness in just 15 minutes (!) after a bite?
– What is a tick check? What should you do if you find a tick attached to you? What is the safest way to remove a tick?  Where can we send ticks to be identified/tested?
– What is a “bullseye rash” and how could it show up differently in men & women? Does everyone get a rash when bitten by a tick?
– What type of clothing effectively reduces your chance of getting a tick bite? What is permethrin & how is it used on clothing (NOT your skin)?
– What is picaridin & other repellents which ARE applied to our skin? What works/doesn’t work to repel ticks?

Dr. Beatrice Szantyr, Internist and Pediatrician who lectures on Lyme disease and related tick-borne disorders in Maine and nationally, to both professional and community groups. She is an active member of the Maine CDC Vector Borne Disease Work Group, and a member of the International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society.  Dr. Szantyr also had served on the 2022 Federal Tick-Borne Disease Working Group, Access to Care and Education Subcommittee.

EPA info on effective repellents

University of Maine Tick Lab
Protect Yourself from ticks & tick-borne diseases:

Tick testing Amherst MA. (tests for more diseases):

Columbia University Lyme and Tick-Borne Diseases Research Center

Lyme Disease Association
Research, Education, Prevention and Patient Support

Powered by patients. Home of Lyme Times and My Lyme Data:

Maine Tracking Network: Tickborne Diseases
Improving public health with better information

TickEncounter  The University of Rhode Island
Tick-borne Disease prevention Education

This article is brief enough for a patient to bring to a doctor’s visit for them to consider:
The Management of Ixodes scapularis Bites in the Upper Midwest

Free, Evidence-based, AAFP-Accredited Courses that Physicians Can Trust

Invisible International
The Montecalvo Platform for Tick-borne Illness Education is a library of accredited continuing medical education (CME) courses that teach front-line clinicians about diagnosing and treating vector-borne diseases. These courses are free to all users and are accessible to both clinicians and patients online.
Previous HEALTHY OPTIONS PROGRAMS on ticks & Lyme can also be found at:

About the host:
Rhonda Feiman is a nationally-certified, licensed acupuncturist practicing in Belfast, Maine since 1993. She primarily practices Toyohari Japanese acupuncture, using gentle and powerful non-insertion needle techniques, and also utilizes Chinese acupuncture and herbology. In addition, Rhonda is a practitioner of Qi Gong and an instructor of Tai Chi Chuan in the Yang Family tradition.