When would the signs or symptoms of Lyme disease start to appear?
If a human does become infected with Lyme disease, the symptoms usually begin within three days to one month after being bitten by an infected tick.2
Many of the first symptoms also happen with other diseases, which may make it harder to tell if someone has Lyme disease. If you develop any of these symptoms following a tick bite go see your doctor right away. It is important to tell your doctor the geographical location of where you may have been bitten by a tick.1 For example, if you were hiking at Point Pelee National Park, you would let the doctor know this as it is an area where blacklegged ticks and Lyme disease are found. If you saved the tick that bit you bring it to your doctor's appointment or submit a tick to the Health Unit for identification.
Can Lyme disease in humans be treated?
Anyone bitten by a blacklegged tick should contact their healthcare provider to determine next steps. Please use this resource when talking with your healthcare provider:
Antibiotics may be given to a person if they are showing the signs and symptoms of Lyme disease.2 This would be done to prevent further health problems from happening. The sooner you get treatment, the better your chance of recovery.1
Things that help decide if antibiotics should be given are:
- Did the person visit an area known to have Lyme disease?
- Did a tick bite the person and stay attached for longer than 24 hours?
- Is the tick available to be tested?
- Is the person showing signs or symptoms of Lyme disease?
For more information about Lyme Disease, please contact the Vector-Borne Disease team at:
Please note: Where indicated, the source of the information on this web page is the Government of Canada's Lyme disease: Symptoms and treatment web page. The information is a copy of the version available at the URL in the references section below, OR the source of information is Public Health Ontario. © Queen’s Printer for Ontario, 2016.