How Lyme Disease Is Like a Hurricane – The Mighty

We are in hurricane season again. Hurricanes are a specific type of weather phenomena characterized by lots of water and high winds. Hurricane Dorian recently swept up the Carolina coast, bringing havoc in its wake. The experience of Lyme disease is like a hurricane; it comes on high intensity and does damage. The more time the Lyme stalls and stays with you, the more harm it does. Lyme and co-infections require action plan to prevent damage, thorough treatment during active infection, and most importantly, support and resources to recover and rebuild.

Hurricanes’ Breakdown of Healthy Communities

Many governments have learned the hard way about the long term damage a storm can cause. I remember traveling to visit relatives in 2002, 10 years after Hurricane Andrew devastated Homestead, Florida. Driving down the road we could still see street lights bent over at a 90-degree angle and houses boarded up with numbers spray-painted on the plywood. We as visitors were shocked, but the locals didn’t even notice. Damaged was their new reality. Homestead was severely injured and 10 years later had yet to recover fully.

Katrina unleashed on New Orleans in 2005. My jaw dropped when I saw the Superdome on TV. It had been made over into a refugee center and hardly resembled the glamorous stadium I remembered from my previous visits. Hurricane Katrina displaced an NFL team as well as a community and families.

In 2017 Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico’s economy, land and necessary support systems. Thousands died from the storm and the lack of preparation that kept much of the island without power and medical infrastructure for a year. These hurricanes were in the news for a short period, but our attention cycle is short. We move on while these broken communities struggle to muster the will and resources to forge their recovery.

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