Having grown up around horses and boarding my first horse in a 100 acre pasture behind my California ranch-style home, I know to check myself for ticks.
What I didn’t know was how much punch a little tick could pack – enough to knock a young professional athlete to her knees and cause a California mother to temporarily lose her memory due to a tick bite.
Lyme disease facts
Did you know that Lyme disease is one of the fastest growing infectious diseases in the United States, with over 300,000 new cases each year?
The greatest incidence of Lyme disease is among children.
In California, the Western black-legged tick, which transmits Lyme disease to humans and animals has been found in 56 of 58 counties.
Diagnostic tests for Lyme disease are unreliable; left untreated Lyme is a debilitating disease.
In California, tick season is year round.
Lyme disease signs and symptoms
Symptoms of Lyme disease typically appear days or weeks after infection. Look for rash (often times a bulls-eye rash), headaches, flu-like symptoms, joint pain, strong fatigue, small bump or redness at tick bite and even Bell’s palsy.
Bay Area Lyme Foundation
The Bay Area Lyme Foundation was established by a group of friends from Portola Valley, California who were alarmed by the rising rates of Lyme disease in the greater San Francisco Bay Area. The Silicon Valley-based non-profit organization is dedicated to making Lyme disease easy to diagnose and cure.
Polo for Lyme
Polo for Lyme is an annual event to benefit Bay Area Lyme Foundation. With a hat parade, polo tournament, live and silent auction, champagne divot stomp, live music and gourmet buffet, Polo for Lyme is an annual benefit for horse lovers and fun seekers!
For more information on Lyme disease and next year’s Polo for Lyme event date visit www.bayarealyme.org or call (650) 530-2439.
Article, video and photos courtesy of Equestrian Travel Writer Nancy D. Brown of What a Trip, Travels from Northern California.