by Dr. Bill Rawls
Watching a child struggle with symptoms of Lyme disease is heartbreaking for parents, and kids are especially susceptible to infections involving the central nervous system. Then, add in daily stress factors, like food, social media, and toxins, and you have a recipe to make kids very ill.
In this video, Dr. Rawls discusses key ways to create a more healing environment for children and herbal therapy’s role in nurturing a child on the road to recovery. Learn more about kids and Lyme disease here.
Question: What about kids and Lyme disease?
That’s a big one. There are so many kids that are being affected, and everybody, this Lyme awareness, we are a lot more aware of this thing that we call “Lyme disease,” or “chronic Lyme disease,” than we ever have been. There’s no doubt about it, but it’s not a new illness. They’ve been identifying a rash or illnesses associated with EM (erythema migrans) rashes — tick-borne illnesses — for hundreds of years. And we know that borrelia really has been around for more than 15 million years. So ticks have been biting humans since humans have been around. And borrelia has been right there with them.
But our world is changing. I mean, you think about the world that kids live in, the food that they’re eating compared to 50 years ago, or a hundred years ago, the toxins that are prevalent in their environment, and some things are better. Our air is cleaner, our rivers are cleaner, but we still have low-grade toxins in our food and in our water, in other places that we’re exposed to. The stress level, just the social stresses of social media and all the things that kids have to navigate through, they’re getting hit pretty hard. And if you have all that stress on your system, and then you end up with a load of tick-borne microbes, you can get pretty sick. And they end up in the brain, and they end up throughout the body, and that can be a real issue.
So a big part of the thing with kids is restoring an environment, a healing environment. That is so big. You have to create that because I look at what kids are eating now, and those foods weren’t even present when I was that age, but they’ve become so prevalent in our world now, and there are so many things that kids are exposed to.
On top of that, herbs have been a wonderful solution for so many children. And it is something you can do long-term to gradually help them restore normal life. But the toughest thing is just having them on board with the whole thing because they have to live a life that’s a little bit different than the kids around them, and that’s where community support can be so important.
That’s why the support groups are so remarkable and all the different Lyme groups that are out there that are promoting Lyme awareness and taking us to another level. So these things are accepted by the mainstream community so that we know that things are going to improve over time and so the literature, the research that I’m seeing now, it’s pretty solid. Things like the studies that are coming out of Johns Hopkins, but so many others understanding these microbes, understanding the connections that they have, not only to chronic Lyme disease, but so many other chronic illnesses — all of that is coming out.
But it takes time. There’s something called the “research-to-clinical-medicine” gap. That’s an average of 17 years. They’ve actually studied this from the time that studies are recognized in peer-review journals to the time that it’s actually applied in clinical medicine. So the things that I’m looking at that have come out over the past couple of years, doctors will be adopting 15 or 20 years from now. We can speed that up through a grassroots effort to increase awareness, so that is what these kinds of things are all about.
So promoting awareness is remarkably important, and even if it’s just on a grassroots level, growing it out so that people everywhere become more accepting, and they understand this thing, then the medical community will respond, and maybe they’ll do it faster than an average of 17 years.
So what you’re doing — just being here — counts. It matters. And so thanks for all that you do. And anything that you can do to help other people understand this very complex illness is really, really important.