Prevention Starts With You!!!

hpv vaccine

Prevention is better than cure! A phrase my mother always told me coming up as a child when it came to everyday decision making.  Who would know these few words can have such significant meaning throughout my adult life, and incorporating it into my patient education.

As we’re approaching the end of Cervical Cancer Awareness Month, I encourage the parents of today to vaccinate their young ladies with the HPV vaccine.  Quadrivalent HPV Vaccine  can be used to vaccinate both male and females.  The vaccines  consist of 3 doses.  The 1st dose is usually given at age 11, 2nd dose  4 weeks from the 1st, and the 3rd dose is given 6months from the initial dose.  There are over 30 strains of the HPV virus.  This vaccine helps to eliminate  some risk in cervical cancer HPV 16 and 18 account for approximately 68% of squamous cell cancers.  Why should males receive this vaccine too you ask…don’t forget that all genital warts (condyloma) are caused by HPV, and approximately 90% are associated with HPV types 6 and 11.      The vaccine isn’t recommended for adults mainly because exposure to one or more of these strains has occurred already.  Overall in the United States, an estimated 6.2 million new HPV infections occur every year among persons aged 14–44 years. Of these, 74% occur among those aged 15-24 years.  Modeling estimates suggest that >80% of sexually active women will have acquired genital HPV by age 50 years.  Everyone situation is different.  If you’re an adult and have had 1 partner, chances are you can receive the vaccine.  Again consult with your provider for your specific needs.

Some might argue that it’s too young to speak to your child on these issues, i beg to differ.  They are exposed to sex everyday in music, on TV’s and when they go to school.  The majority of NYC public high schools have what’s called the “CATCH” program and many uninvolved parents aren’t aware that their daughters are being given birth control pills, IUD’s, and being referred for abortions if needed all during “class time”.  Unless your child will be sworn to a life of celibacy, be proactive and help to eliminate some risk when it comes our future.  The journey to having great sexual health starts with education, especially education of our youth so that they can make better decisions as they journey into adulthood.

Shape Your Mind and Your Body

January 19th-25th 2014 is Healthy Weight Week.  This week I’m reflecting on foods that we consume and their benefit our bodies internally and externally.  The main goal is to get you to eat well and feel great about yourself.  During this week, the SLIM CHANCE AWARDS are announced.  Started 25 years ago the Slim Chance Awards bring to light the worst weight loss plans and products of the previous year.

winners-graphicWorst Weight Loss Plan:  The Special K Challenge Kellogg’s Special K Challenge claims that by replacing two meals a day with Special K products, including cereals, protein shakes and protein meal bars, a weight loss of up to 6 pounds in 14 days will occur.

 Most Overrated:  Non Invasive Body Contouring Procedures
Treatments can cost thousands of dollars per area, are recommended only for people who are at a “normal weight,” and produce incredibly varied results.
Worst Gimmick:  The Tongue Patch Diet
In this reversible procedure a plastic mesh patch is fitted to the patient’s tongue. The purpose is to make chewing extremely painful, thus limiting the dieter to only liquid. Users have reported up to 20 lbs. of weight loss in a month.
Most Outrageous:  Cotton Ball Diet
Dieters dip cotton balls in juice and ingest them so as to feel full without actually consuming real food. Risks include a blockage in the digestive system, which could result in surgery.
Other awards given during this week include:  The Healthy Body Image Award acknowledges a person who has helped others implement a healthy lifestyle, & accept their bodies:  The Healthy Weight Blogger Awards given to bloggers who support people finding their healthy weight, and give up dieting.
I must say as a medical professional I do not like the term “diet”.  Diet sets limitations, seems forceful, it makes me feel like I’m being bullied, and that’s the last feeling that i want my readers to have.  My goal is to help you to make better meal and snack choices in your everyday lifestyle.  If you’re following me on Instagram ( http://www.instagram.com/PrettYyMissRN ), my posts this week have been encouraging my followers to get active, and educating them on the many benefits of fruits,  and to be more conscious of the choices with what we intake on a daily basis.  Challenge yourself by omitting “junk food” from your lifestyle for a week and see how much better you feel.  Not only will it be  beneficial internally, but increased exercise…along with a better choice for your meals,  you will see results.  Elevating your mental state by raising self esteem, being more confident and increasing your sexual fitness.  Stamina, endurance and flexibility key components of great sexual health.  It’s never too late to start.  For a  nutrition consultation email PrettYyMissRN@gmail.com.

Increase Your Vaginal Wetness!

Women go thru many changes…some are related to hormones, and others are influenced by lifestyle , and medications.  The inability to “get wet” can be caused by several reasons.  Sexual Dysfunction in women is more common than you think.  Many everyday OTC (over the counter) medications can contribute to the inability for a woman to naturally lubricate.  Allergy medications (antihistamines), depression medications, non steroid anti inflammatory (NSAIDs) such as naproxen which is found in many OTC MEDS like Aleve , and is commonly prescribed for pain.  These all can contribute to this problem.  Unfortunately some are too embarrassed to address this topic with their provider, so they continue to suffer in silence.  Ladies you need to speak up!  Same as with your partner, if you don’t tell your provider what’s going on with your body, how can anything be done to rectify the situation???  Antihistamines naturally block secretions from being produced, whether nasally or vaginally, the body doesn’t discriminate as to which secretion is being blocked.

If you’re on an antihistamine medication, you might want to try taking it 3-4 hours prior to intercourse, ensure that you are adequately hydrated too.

Antidepressant medications can be a bit more tricky, your provider will have to consider potential interactions with other medications you might be on if your regime were to be changed, and also if it would be in your best interest “mentally” to switch.  Again every one is an individual when it comes to how their body will react to a new or change in medication.  Your provider might deem it necessary for you to remain on your current med regime and would consider trying a new med if alternative methods fail.   In this case you might want to opt to incorporate a lubricant into your sexual life.  Lubricants are not made solely for women who suffer with Sexual Dysfunction.  Women in general should use lubricants on a whole “The Wetter The Better”.

Lubricants or as we refer to them in the shorter term “lubes” make both inner and outer sensations feel 100% better.  Water based lubes are ideal for most sexual activities.  They’re safely used both anally and on the genitals.  Silicone based  lubes are not water-soluble (don’t dissolve in water) so they are great for sexual activities in wet places such as the jacuzzi, shower or bath.  Don’t confine yourself to one type of lube, you will need various lubes for different occasions, and if you’re using a sex toy, make sure the type of lube used is compatible with the material of your toy.  I will address all types and the differences in another blog.  You can check out the best quality lubes at affordable prices on http://juiceyboxxx.com

National Birth Defects Prevention Awareness Month

January is National Birth Defects Prevention Awareness Month.  Daily consumption of the B vitamin folic acid beginning before pregnancy is vital, iprevention of birth defects of the brain and spine known as neural tube defects (NTDs), including spina bifida.  Women of childbearing age and need to be informed that folic acid promotes good health before, during, and after pregnancy. These deformities can occur in the early weeks following conception, often before a womaeven knows she is pregnant, that is why regular consumption of this vitamin is important.  The neural tube is the part of a developing baby that becomes the brain and spinal chord.  Hispanic women are about 20 percent more likely to have a child with a neural tube defect (NTD) than non-Hispanic women. All women who can become pregnant should consume at least 400 mcg of folic acid every day. You can either take a multivitamin, or simply have a serving of cereal which has the recommended daily amount.  If you’re not a cereal lover you can consume foods that are high in folate from beans, peas and lentils, oranges and orange juice, asparagus and broccoli, and dark leafy green vegetables such as spinach, and mustard greens.  For more information you can visit CDC’s Folic Acid Homepage.  

Sexual Health Begins With You! Cervical Cancer Awareness

cervicalcancer2January is Cervical Cancer Awareness Month.  Cervical cancer can be hereditary, and can also be caused by  HPV.  The Human Papillomavirus is more common in males who have multiple sexual partners, and they are the transmitters of this virus.  There are over 100 types of HPV.  Some cause genital warts, while others can cause abnormal cell changes of the cervix or a combination of both.  Abnormal cell changes can result in cancer if not detected on time,   this is why it’s very important to have regular check ups with your provider.  Screening for men include visual inspection to look for lesions such as warts.  Women usually find out through an abnormal Pap smear that they have been exposed.  The provider will then perform a biopsy of cervical tissue known as a colposcopy to further determine a diagnosis of cancer or not.  It can take weeks, months or years before this virus is detected.  Much is still unknown about the time from initial exposure to when lesions, and cell abnormalities appear.  The key to a healthy sexual relationship begins with communication.  The more you interact intimately the deeper the connection, so be honest and open with your partner.  If your choice is that of a promiscuous lifestyle, take measures to ensure the safety of yourself and your partners  #WrapItUp.