Preppers are concerned about scenarios that can prevent access, such as weather extremes (hurricanes, ice storms, blizzards), civil unrest (riots, curfews), EMP, TEOTWAWKI, or pandemics/disasters, which can swamp the medical system. When illness or injury strikes, you will not have the time or inclination to read books or articles. I, therefore, propose the use of medical action sheets, and I am sharing a few of those that I have written. In truth, I have given binders of these to my loved ones with the caveat that they use them only in a genuine situation as listed above and if I am unavailable to help them. As you read these lists, remember that I am not prescribing and urge you to review any plans with your medical professional who will tailor medical action sheets to your specific medical needs, conditions, allergies, and abilities.
Last time we studied influenza, colds, and pneumonia. Today we will study tick-borne illnesses, which can be quite serious and difficult to diagnose correctly even by experts. Nevertheless, you can save yourself or your loved ones a lot of grief by knowing certain warning signs and situations.
New Type of Tick Sweeping the USA
There is even a new type of tick sweeping the USA that you should be aware of. It is called the Asian longhorned tick and arrived state-side in 2017. A female Asian longhorned tick can lay approximately 2,000 eggs without even mating, has a faster life-cycle generating more ticks, and survives freezing winters by digging into the ground. This is bad news.
How To Combat Any Type of Tick-Borne Disease
To combat any type of tick-borne disease, consider the following:
- Use DEET and wear protective clothing
- Remove ticks ASAP by grabbing the head with tweezers and pulling. Consider it contaminated and place it in a bottle of rubbing alcohol or zip-lock bag, in case it is needed for medical evaluation later. Cleanse the bite with rubbing alcohol, then soap and water. Cleanse hands and tweezers too.
- Cats decrease the tick-carrying rodent population.
- Fill up cardboard tubes with permethrin-soaked cotton balls and place them outdoors. Mice will construct nests using the treated cotton balls, thus killing ticks.
Ticks can carry several types of disease. We will next mention three kinds and supply medical actions sheets for two. (Remember to see your medical professional if you become ill after a tick bite!)
The first disease is alpha-gal syndrome in which a person becomes allergic to red meat due to an immunological reaction resulting from a Lone Star tick bite. The second is Lyme disease, and the third is Rocky Mountain spotted fever.
Overview of Lyme Disease
Lyme disease is due to Borrelia burgdorferi bacteria transmitted by a tick that has been attached for at least 36 hours. You may never even see the tick because it is so tiny, and medical blood tests may be negative during the early stages of this disease. Early symptoms are flu-like, and the classic bull’s eye/target rash at the bite appears in only 20% of patients within the first 3-32 days. More frequently seen is an expanding redness at the bite site. However, 20 to 30% of patients have no rash at all. Arthritis, especially of the knees, may develop. Later, neurological and cardiac problems may appear. The sooner this illness is treated with antibiotics, the faster and more complete the recovery will be. Lyme disease can mimic many different autoimmune illnesses and prove difficult to diagnose and treat. Get professional help.
Medical Action Sheet- Lyme Disease
Below is the medical action sheet on lyme disease for adults.
Symptoms may include headache, fatigue, muscle aches, maybe fever, maybe rash (days 3-32), classic bulls-eye in 20%, others expanding redness, no rash in 20-30%, arthritis (especially knees), memory problems, heart arrhythmia, neurological complications, and mimics autoimmune diseases
For treatment of adults, supply doxycycline 100mg twice daily for 10 to 21 days. If pregnant, use amoxicillin 500mg three times daily for 14-21 days. The antibiotics stop bacterial replication, but they don’t kill the organism. Get professional help. Excessive use of antibiotics can result in becoming permanently allergic to the drug.
Overview of Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever
Last is Rocky Mountain spotted fever, which is serious and can be fatal. Note that it is not limited to the Rocky Mountain region. Get medical help ASAP if suspected. It is due to Rickettsia rickettsii bacteria transmitted from tick to human in as little as six hours of attachment. Soak the removed tick in rubbing alcohol, treat it as contaminated, and save it for medical testing. Up to 50% of patients exhibit flu-like symptoms and high fever within 3-5 days post bite. Treatment with antibiotics needs to begin early on to decrease the mortality rate and should commence within five days of the appearance of first symptoms. Waiting for the typical rash, if it appears, is too late. A red-spotted rash may show up on wrists and ankles and then spread up the arms and legs to the torso. Classic involvement of the palms of the hands and soles of the feet is evident in only 43% by day five. There are tests that can be performed on both patient and tick. This is a serious disease. Get professional help.
Medical Action Sheet- Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever
Below is the medical action sheet on Rocky Mountain spotted fever for adults.
Symptoms may include a severe headache, fever often over 102, chills, muscle aches, nausea, vomiting, confusion, flu-like symptoms in 50% of people by 3-5 days post bite. Rash spreads from wrists/ankles to torso (43% by day five). Check palms and soles.
Adult treatment: Doxycycline begun within 5 days of first symptoms drops mortality from 20% to 5%. An adult dosage is 100mg twice daily until the patient improves, is afebrile (without fever) three days, and treated for a minimum of 5-7 days. Get professional help ASAP.
Tomorrow, in Part 4, we will study “Acute Sinusitis Treatments” and what you can do about it with or without prescription medications.
SurvivalBlog Writing Contest
This has been part three of a four part entry for Round 80 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The nearly $11,000 worth of prizes for this round include:
- A $3000 gift certificate towards a Sol-Ark Solar Generator from Veteran owned Portable Solar LLC. The only EMP Hardened Solar Generator System available to the public.
- A Gunsite Academy Three Day Course Certificate. This can be used for any one, two, or three day course (a $1,095 value),
- A course certificate from onPoint Tactical for the prize winner’s choice of three-day civilian courses, excluding those restricted for military or government teams. Three day onPoint courses normally cost $795,
- DRD Tactical is providing a 5.56 NATO QD Billet upper. These have hammer forged, chrome-lined barrels and a hard case, to go with your own AR lower. It will allow any standard AR-type rifle to have a quick change barrel. This can be assembled in less than one minute without the use of any tools. It also provides a compact carry capability in a hard case or in 3-day pack (an $1,100 value),
- Two cases of Mountain House freeze-dried assorted entrees in #10 cans, courtesy of Ready Made Resources (a $350 value),
- A $250 gift certificate good for any product from Sunflower Ammo,
- American Gunsmithing Institute (AGI) is providing a $300 certificate good towards any of their DVD training courses.
- A Model 175 Series Solar Generator provided by Quantum Harvest LLC (a $439 value),
- A Glock form factor SIRT laser training pistol and a SIRT AR-15/M4 Laser Training Bolt, courtesy of Next Level Training, which have a combined retail value of $589,
- A gift certificate for any two or three-day class from Max Velocity Tactical (a $600 value),
- A Three-Day Deluxe Emergency Kit from Emergency Essentials (a $190 value),
- Two 1,000-foot spools of full mil-spec U.S.-made 750 paracord (in-stock colors only) from www.TOUGHGRID.com (a $240 value).
- An assortment of products along with a one hour consultation on health and wellness from Pruitt’s Tree Resin (a $265 value).
- A Royal Berkey water filter, courtesy of Directive 21 (a $275 value),
- A large handmade clothes drying rack, a washboard, and a Homesteading for Beginners DVD, all courtesy of The Homestead Store, with a combined value of $206,
- Expanded sets of both washable feminine pads and liners, donated by Naturally Cozy (a $185 retail value),
- Two Super Survival Pack seed collections, a $150 value, courtesy of Seed for Security, LLC,
- Mayflower Trading is donating a $200 gift certificate for homesteading appliances.
Round 80 ends on January 31st, so get busy writing and e-mail us your entry. Remember that there is a 1,500-word minimum, and that articles on practical “how to” skills for survival have an advantage in the judging.