Keep this in mind the next time you go for a hike in a wooded or grassy area: Tiny critters called Deer ticks often carry Lyme disease-causing bacteria that is spread by their bite. Once thought of as fairly rare, recent CDC estimates suggest Lyme is actually 10 times more common than we’d thought and infects roughly 300,000 Americans annually.
So long as it’s treated quickly and properly, Lyme disease isn’t too serious of a health issue. However, untreated Lyme can result in severe problems like meningitis or even partial paralysis, and the symptoms may not show up until a week or even years after a bite.
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