What is a Herx and What are some tips to help manage it?

Patients who are treating any bacterial infection with antibacterials will likely experience the “die-off” or a Herxheimer reaction at one point or another during their treatment. This reaction will vary from patient to patient and will vary based on how intense the toxin loads are.

At times, this “die-off” can almost feel worse than the sickness. I know for me it brought out some of the worse times throughout my decade with Lyme Disease and it’s co-infections (Bartonella, Babesia, & active viruses like Epstein-Barr Virus).

When I first started treating with my IV antibiotics in January of 2018 I was feeling quite great because the antibiotics were doing their thing and killing the damaging bacteria throughout my body. To avoid a strong Herx I took lots of probiotics and lots supplements to assist my body with removing the dead toxins. However, months into my treatment the wrath of the Herx took over my body, mind, and soul. I never had a chance. The only thing that got me through these dark times was the immense support from my family and friends and the simple fact that this meant that the medicine was doing something right.

***When the toxic bacteria is destroyed by antibiotics the dead toxins are still floating around the body. The dead toxins create inflammation sometimes so intense it can cause  fever, chills, rigor, hypo-tension, headache, tachycardia, hyperventilation, muscle pain, exacerbation of skin lesions, extreme anxiety, and suicidal thoughts.***

TIPS AND TOOLS TO HELP MANAGE A HERXHEIMER REACTION:

  • Activated charcoal – Helps reduce inflammation and bind toxins!
  • Infrared sauna – A few sessions a week does a body great!
  • Epsom salt baths – Helps relax the muscles and accept the die-off.
  • Glutathione – Best natural antioxidant.
  • Stay hydrated  – For obvious reason, but mostly water helps keep things flowing.
  • Get enough sleep – 8-10 hours per night is essential during treatment.
  • Alkalize – Help buffer the toxins and reduce inflammation, try AlkaSeltzer Gold.
  • Vitamin C & E – Both work together to as antioxidants for the blood and tissues.
  • Turmeric with Bioperine – Naturally reduce toxic inflammation.
  • Natural Remedies – Increase your natural defenses with Lemon juice, Ginger, etc.
  • Get outdoors – Nature has natural detoxing effects on the body. Get moving!
  • Remove toxic energy and people from your life.
  • Be sure to allow yourself time to relax and laugh A LOT!

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According to Global Lyme Alliance:
“Discovered by dermatologists Adolf Jarisch and Karl Herxheimer in their studies of syphilis—another illness like Lyme whose bacterium is a spirochete, meaning having a spiral shape—a Jarisch-Herxheimer reaction is an adverse response to toxins released by bacteria killed by antibiotics. In the case of Lyme disease, antibiotics sometimes kill spirochetes faster than the body can eliminate them. This means the patient is stuck with a backlog of dead bacteria which takes time to expel. The buildup of this toxic waste can make the patient feel much worse before it makes them feel better; their symptoms increase until their bodies can expel the dead spirochetes.”

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