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Avril Lavigne lends support to Justin Bieber after he reveals Lyme disease diagnosis

(L-R): Avril Lavigne and Justin Bieber.
(L-R): Avril Lavigne and Justin Bieber. Getty Images

Justin Bieber opened up about his Lyme disease diagnosis on Wednesday, and fellow Canadian pop star Avril Lavigne has offered her support.

Lavigne contracted Lyme disease from a tick bite in spring 2014 and was bedridden for five months.

She took to Instagram on Wednesday to discuss Lyme disease and offer her help to the Yummy singer.

READ MORE: Justin Bieber reveals battle with Lyme disease, chronic mono

“Today @JustinBieber shared that he has Lyme disease,” she began. “There are too many people that have this debilitating disease! People I love and care about and many friends and fans I have crossed paths with.

“To everyone affected by Lyme, I want to tell you that there is HOPE. Because Lyme is a daily struggle, for the better part of two years, I was really sick and fighting for my life. Writing #HeadAboveWater helped me get through the worst of it, but the bad days still come and go.

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Justin Bieber battling Lyme disease
Justin Bieber battling Lyme disease

“At the time, putting together my album saved my life. I needed to tell my story and to be able to share my experiences with others. Lyme disease is in all 50 states of the US and in EVERY country in the world except Antarctica. It is a global pandemic but NOT a global priority,” Lavigne wrote.

She said she “never want[s] others to suffer the way that I did, and because of that it is now my mission to raise awareness & funds that will help eradicate this life-altering disease.”

“Portions of proceeds from every show on the rest of the #HeadAboveWater tour and merch sales will continue to go directly to Lyme disease. I will continue to fight and to support!” she wrote.

“@TheAvrilLavigneFoundation supports people with Lyme Disease, serious illness or disabilities. We raise awareness and aid PREVENTION of the Lyme epidemic,” Lavigne added. “We impact the lives of individuals and families affected by Lyme Disease through TREATMENT grants administered by our charitable partners; and we’ve aligned with @globallymealliance to accelerate scientific research.”

“Please, JOIN US as we endeavor to educate people, prevent the spread of Lyme and find a cure. Our initiatives enable us to provide HOPE and expand the number of lives we’re able to transform. TOGETHER we can do this.”

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Today @JustinBieber shared that he has Lyme disease. There are too many people that have this debilitating disease! People I love and care about and many friends and fans I have crossed paths with. To everyone affected by Lyme, I want to tell you that there is HOPE. Because Lyme is a daily struggle, for the better part of two years, I was really sick and fighting for my life. Writing #HeadAboveWater helped me get through the worst of it, but the bad days still come and go. At the time, putting together my album saved my life. I needed to tell my story and to be able to share my experiences with others. Lyme disease is in all 50 states in the US and in EVERY country in the world, except Antarctica. It is a global pandemic but NOT a global priority. I never want others to suffer the way that I did, and because of that it is now my mission to raise awareness & funds that will help eradicate this life-altering disease. Portions of proceeds from every show on the rest of the #HeadAboveWater tour and merch sales will continue to go directly to Lyme disease. I will continue to fight and to support! @TheAvrilLavigneFoundation supports people with Lyme Disease, serious illness or disabilities. We raise awareness and aid PREVENTION of the Lyme epidemic. We impact the lives of individuals and families affected by Lyme Disease through TREATMENT grants administered by our charitable partners; and we’ve aligned with @globallymealliance to accelerate scientific research. Please, JOIN US as we endeavor to educate people, prevent the spread of Lyme and find a cure. Our initiatives enable us to provide HOPE and expand the number of lives we’re able to transform. TOGETHER we can do this. #FightLyme #LymeIsReal #TheAvrilLavigneFoundation

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Lavigne has been very open about her battle with Lyme disease.

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“I felt like I couldn’t breathe, I couldn’t talk and I couldn’t move,” the Canadian singer told People in 2014. “I thought I was dying.”

Lavigne said she felt lethargic and lightheaded for months but didn’t know why. She finally got a diagnosis of Lyme disease.

“I had no idea a bug bite could do this,” said Lavigne.

In 2015, Lavigne revealed she was about halfway through her treatment in an interview with ABC News.

“I’m doing a lot better. Seeing a lot of progress. I’m just really grateful to know that, like, I will make [a] 100 per cent recovery,” she said. Doctors had suggested everything from chronic fatigue syndrome to depression.

READ MORE: Shania Twain says Lyme disease caused her to lose her voice

Lyme disease is a bacteria transmitted through the bites of infected deer ticks, which can be about the size of poppy seeds. Female ticks can grow up to 100 times their original size after feeding on blood, experts say.

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Unlike mosquitoes that can transfer West Nile virus to humans with a single bite, the tick has to be attached to the body for at least 24 to 36 hours.

In 2017, Canadian singer Shania Twain revealed that the cause of her temporary vocal struggle was linked to Lyme disease.

Back in 2011, she opened up about her struggle with dysphonia, which is a medical condition that left her unable to sing.

She later said it was more than stress that led to the condition, and though she didn’t go into much detail about it, Twain said the condition was brought on by Lyme disease.

While speaking to the Los Angeles Times, the Party For Two singer explained that she went through extensive therapy to get her voice back before the start of her residency at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas in 2012.

The voice-strengthening exercises and intense vocal warmups helped her learn more about her own vocal cords and herself, she said.

“I learned a lot about myself, and my voice, both because I’d been having a lot of problems with my voice prior and because this was a real plunge into the unknown,” Twain said.

READ MORE: Avril Lavigne’s new song ‘Head Above Water’ reflects on Lyme disease

Bieber spoke out earlier on Wednesday to address his health issues, calling out those who’ve criticized him for not looking his best.

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“While a lot of people kept saying Justin Bieber looks like s—, on meth etc. they failed to realize I’ve been recently diagnosed with Lyme disease, not only that but had a serious case of chronic mono which affected my skin, brain function, energy and overall health,” he wrote in the caption.

“These things will be explained further in a docuseries I’m putting on YouTube shortly, you can learn all that I’ve been battling and overcoming.

“It’s been a rough couple years but getting the right treatment that will help treat this so far incurable disease and I will be back and better than ever.”

Bieber’s wife, Hailey, joined the conversation on Twitter.

“For those who are trying to downplay the severity of Lyme disease. Please do your research and listen to the stories of people who have suffered with it for years,” she wrote.

“Making fun of and belittling a disease you don’t understand is never the way, all it takes is educating yourself.”

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Hailey went on to thank Yolanda Hadid, who has publicly shared her battle with Lyme disease. Hadid said it left her unable to “process information or any stimulation.”

“I wanna say a huge thank you to @YolandaHadid and @BellaHadid and @GigiHadid for bringing me so much clarity and information on Lyme disease and for helping answer my questions about course of action, symptoms etc.,” Hailey wrote. “Love you 3 amazing women!”

“And sending so much love to @AvrilLavigne thank you for all you do to educate people about Lyme,” Hailey added. “You’re amazing.”

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You can find more information on Lyme disease symptoms on the Canadian Lyme Disease Foundation website.