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Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Your Feet And Lyme Disease

Like so many Lyme sufferers, my feet were especially affected with pain, swelling, and inflammation.  Since I have to walk and stand at work, there was no catching a break.  The pain and swelling was worse at night, just when I wanted to sleep.   The morning pain and stiffness was crippling in the morning hours after waking and lasted until about noon.  The more I walked around, the better I felt.  Working actually felt better for me because I was moving and standing.  Sitting down hurt my feet and legs.  Work distracted me from the pain.  There were many days that I had to make myself go to work.  I was in so much pain!  Winter seems to be the worst.  The cold weather here in Indiana was especially painful on my feet.  My feet always felt ice cold and the cold brought more pain.  But I know that work isn't possible for most people with Lyme disease.  It can be so crippling. There are several things that I tried that did seem to help while I was being treated with the antibiotics.  I will list these here:

  • warm water foot soaks with hydrogen peroxide, baking soda, Epsom salt (morning and night)
  • Frankincense essential oil applied to sore joints with a roller ball applicator
  • Capsaicin topical liquid made for arthritis in a roller ball applicator (Walgreen's brand)
  • hot water bottle or heating pads for pain and cold feet in the winter
  • wearing thick, wool socks in layers will help prevent painfully cold feet and help you to go to sleep more quickly at night
  • Lined boots help prevent more pain and swelling in cold fall, winter, and early spring months
  • occasional ice bags when the swelling got severe helped to reduce the inflammation
  • heated mattress pads and/or electric blankets helped to keep extremities warm and more comfortable at night
  • Sleep is essential.  Aim for at least 8 hours a day.  Naps are allowed and encouraged!
  • Swelling can produce cracked, dry skin.  Use a good moisturizer.  I like to use A and D ointment with lanolin and then put on cotton or wool socks at night.
  • take good care of your toe nails.  Keep them properly trimmed to prevent infections and ingrown toenails, especially if your feet are swollen.
  • Elevate your feet above your heart whenever possible
  • If you can afford it and have the time, go for a foot massage or lymphatic drain massage for your feet and legs.  It may help with some of the swelling.
  • a foot brush, pumice stone, and callous file can remove dead, itchy skin and improve circulation
  • sea salt mixed with coconut oil makes a great moisturizer and remove rough dry spots
  • If you do not live alone, allow others to wait on you when you are having a bad day

       The Wet Sock Hydrotherapy Treatment: Old Folk Remedy

I read about a strange cure for boosting your immune system if you are ill.  It involves going to bed with a pair of damp socks on your feet, covered in dry wool socks.  This is supposed to induce a fever and an immune response and kick start your antibodies.  I am not sure if this will work for Lyme sufferers or not but I will include a link to this technique.  I plan to give it a try.  It is apparently an old folk remedy.

Check with your doctor to make sure that it is safe to try this.  I am not giving medical advice here.


  1. Did your Lyme disease cause foot symptoms? What kind of problems did you have with your feet? What seemed to help?