Woman who is sick and sitting on her couch; common symptoms of lyme disease

How Lyme Disease Can Affect Your Mental Health

Lyme disease can be a challenging sickness to live with. The physical symptoms can often be debilitating, especially if left untreated.

However, the effects on your mental health can be severe. Not only can Lyme disease affect your mood, but it can physically change aspects of your brain and body. Here’s a guide on common symptoms of Lyme disease and what mental health consequences you may deal with.

What Are Symptoms of Lyme Disease?

Lyme disease can be difficult to diagnose in the beginning stages, as it can often match that of the common flu or cold. However, people typically notice something wrong when their condition doesn’t improve after the average flu period. And sometimes, the later stages of Lyme disease can severely impact someone’s health and wellbeing.

Some symptoms to look out for include:

  • Chronic fatigue
  • Body aches
  • Joint pain
  • Nerve pain
  • Fever and chills
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Poor sleep
  • Brain fog
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Heart palpitations
  • Depression, mood swings, and personality changes
  • Encephalopathy

How Can Lyme Disease Affect You Mentally?

Depression can be a common symptom of chronic illnesses. Along with the long list of symptoms you’ll experience, it’s common for people with chronic sicknesses to experience them for long periods.

It can also cause anxiety as people may not know what is causing their health problems. And between depression and anxiety, it can sometimes lead to behavioral issues or negative thoughts.

People may experience neuroinflammation occurring one week to two months following a tick bite. The inflammation of the brain can cause a wide array of symptoms such as:

  • Headaches
  • Nausea/ vomiting
  • Vertigo
  • Meningitis
  • Neck stiffness
  • Facial palsy (Bell’s palsy)
  • Depression or anxiety
  • Personality changes and mood swings
  • Irritability
  • Visually tracking words on a page
  • Memory impairment
  • Speech difficulties
  • Confusion, brain fog, or “Lyme brain”
  • Hallucinations (auditory or visual)
Read More About Common Symptoms of Lyme Disease