1. The Borrelia (Lyme bacteria) is out in the system unprotected. In its natural state & attacking the body. Multiplying, drilling it's way into tissue etc. In this state the bacteria is most easy to kill as it has nothing to protect it. Once it realizes its being attacked by the immune system whatever bacteria has survived panics and then comes #2..
2. In the second stage the Borrelia creates a biofilm, a protective shield so to speak. The bacteria can hide when in this shield & even the immune system can't find it. Very tricky little thing! Even antibiotics have a hard time penetrating this layer, hence why patients also take a "biofilm dissolver" during treatment.
3. In the third stage the Borrelia morphs into a cyst form. It is encapsulated in a cyst & once again is untouchable to the immune system. Also difficult for the bacteria to penetrate it. After a while the bacteria feels safe so it ventures out of the cyst .. This is when we go back to phase 1.
There are the 3 stages, and it goes in that order monthly. My doctor has told me to record when my Lyme cycles. I never knew what he, or other Lyme patients meant when they said they found their Lyme cycle. I thought, how on earth would I do that? I always feel bad, so what's the difference?
Finally after months I realized when it was.. Around the 19th of every month. I keep a very detailed log. This includes larger herxes, night sweats, stomach aches, migraines, & any flare ups at all. I also keep a food diary & a medication chart when I add new stuff in. Everything is detailed to a T. Thats why I noticed something that was very pertinent. On the 19th of every month, for the last 4 months I got very ill with the exact same symptoms! It feels like I have a stomach virus. God awful stomach ache like I got punched in the stomach, I can't eat, can barely drink, and I feel like I will barf any second. It's very intense & a few times I needed IV therapy to pull me out of it.
There is no coincidence of its timing. And that classic "ache" it gives me. I could recognize it anywhere. Not to mention I herx badly during thid time because my immune system is on overdrive killing off all the freely open Borrelia. It's no fun, as I'm typing this I am struggling with awful pain. But, I feel happy that those horrible pathogens are being killed off. That, is a feeling of greatness.
On Monday I was celebrating my weight reaching 93.4, and by Wednesday night I was gagging at the sight of food. So that's not very encouraging, but I'm trying to push through as much as possible!
For my fellow Lymies I recommend charting EVERYTHING! There's a great app on my iPhone called My Fitness Pal. It lets you log everything you eat. For me, I use it to count calories to gain weight, but also if I get a bad reaction i can check if it was anything I ate. This is how I discovered my aversion to Chili peppers & that there was Soy in our cream of chicken soup.
Logging your symptoms also helps identify this cycle. When you know it's coming prep by doing extra detoxes & Epsom salt baths etc. Being prepared is the most important thing you can do to help yourself.
I hope this was informative to someone :)