In This Issue
How to Avoid Yeast Infections This Summer
4 Sleep Mistakes You Could Be Making
5 Things Your Period Can Reveal About Your Health
The Raw Deal About Raw Cookie Dough
Is it Safe to Sunbathe While Pregnant?

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How to Avoid Yeast Infections This Summeryeast

While summer brings a lot to look forward to, it carries one unpleasant side effect: yeast infections. According to Linda Nicoll, M.D., an assistant professor in the department of obstetrics and gynecology at NYU Langone Medical Center, yeast infections thrive in warm, moist places-and between heat and sweating, your vagina becomes just that type of environment during summer. Here are a few ways you can beat these seasonal changes and prevent summer yeast infections:

1. Change out of your wet suit ASAP
Change out of your swimsuit and sweaty exercise clothes as quickly as possible, says Nicoll. The wetter an environment, the likelier it is to house yeast infections. You can keep yourself dry by wearing moisture-wicking fabric when you work out.

2. Wear skirts
Skirts allow air to circulate, which keeps your crotch cooler and drier, says Andrea Randall, M.D., a board-certified gynecologist at Eisenhower Women's Health. In general, lighter, looser clothes are better for the same reason, and cotton is the ideal material.

3. Skip the douche
This tip applies year-round, since douching can kill healthy bacteria, push unhealthy bacteria up your uterus, and increase levels of endocrine-disrupting chemicals called phthalates. But it's an especially bad idea to douche during summer, says Randall, since removing good bacteria can leave you prone to yeast infections.
Follow these rules and you should be good. But if you start to notice any itching, redness, or skin breakdown, it's time to see your gyno.

Source: Glamour

4 Sleep Mistakes You Could Be Makingsleep   

Need more sleep? Make sure you aren't making things worse. When sleep disturbances persist, it's important to identify any underlying causes. Consider whether these common triggers could be contributing to your restless nights.

Don't look at the clock

Do this instead: Turn the clock around to face the wall, or hide it in a drawer or under the bed. Constantly checking the time will only arouse you and reinforce the idea that you'll "never" get back to sleep.

Don't stay in bed more than 15 minutes

Do this instead: Leave your bedroom and do something quiet, such as reading a book or watching boring television in a comfortable chair. It's important to remind your brain that your bed is for sleeping, not for lying awake and worrying.

Don't sit in bright light

Do this instead: If you do need to get up, turn on only a dim reading light, or go sit in the glow of your television or computer monitor. Keep bright overhead lights switched off, because light disrupts the production of melatonin-a hormone that regulates sleep-in your brain.

Don't do anything too stimulating

Do this instead: Find something that occupies your time but gives your brain a break, such as knitting or a boring book or TV show. Reading whodunits or balancing your checkbook, on the other hand, may keep your mind working and alert.


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July 2016  

Healthy Summer, Happy You!

Summer brings with it many things we all enjoy - warmer weather, vacations, pool time. But it also is the season when more women see their doctors regarding yeast infections. And yes, some of your favorite summer activities are to blame. Here are some tips on How to Avoid Yeast Infections this Summer and what to do if you think you may have one

Your period is a monthly reminder that everything's working as it should...except for when it's not. The 5 Things Your Period Can Reveal About Your Health will help you determine what's "normal" and what isn't -- and when it may be time to call your doctor.

Have you heard the news about raw cookie dough? We've long been told that cookie dough is bad for us due to the presence of raw eggs and the risk of contracting salmonella. Now the U.S. Food and Drug Administration says cookie dough is a don't. "What?" you say in complete disbelief?  Maybe you've swiped a bite of raw cookie dough while preparing a batch to bake. Or perhaps you've let your children lick the batter from the cake bowl, or use homemade "play dough" to make crafts. But even if the dough is free of raw eggs, which you think might give you a pass, don't eat it. Find out The Raw Deal about Raw Cookie Dough and why the FDA now says: "No more eating raw cookie dough - ever."
You probably already know that tanning -- whether it's out at the beach or indoors in a tanning bed -- isn't a good idea for anyone, since plenty of research shows that it can cause skin cancer, not to mention wrinkles and other skin issues. But pregnant women are especially sensitive to the sun, and too much exposure can cause or worsen skin discoloration (called melasma) that many moms-to-be are already prone to. You don't have to be a hermit, but you should check out, Is it Safe to Sunbathe While Pregnant? Find out if it's worth skipping a summer basking in the sun while you're expecting.

Are you frustrated with your sleep-or lack thereof? You're not alone. Most women experience insomnia at some point in their lives, and 10% have chronic problems with insomnia. If you're staring at the ceiling hour after hour, night after night, it's hard to know what to do or how to fix it. Here are 4 Sleep Mistakes You Could Be Making - and what you should be doing instead.

With warm regards,
The Practitioners and Staff of Lawrence OB/GYN 
5 Things Your Period Can Reveal About Your Healthperiod
Your period is a monthly reminder that everything's working as it should...except for when it's not.

You skipped a period. When your cycle is off, it's usually a sign that something else is off, too, and your brain is delaying ovulation until your health returns to normal. The timing of your menstrual cycle is set by the hypothalamus, the regulatory center in the brain that tells the ovaries what to do. The hypothalamus is super-sensitive to factors that can impair general brain function (even in very mild ways), like sleep deprivation, stress, illness, an unusual fluctuation in hormones, extreme exercise (which the brain can interpret as stress), unusually high or low temperatures or drug use. Very often, when your health gets back on track, your cycle does, too.

What to do: If you skip two periods, bring this up with your gynecologist, so he or she can help you figure out what's going on.

You notice random spotting. Irregular bleeding that occurs in the middle of your cycle, with no PMS in sight, is often unrelated to your period.

What to do: Tell your gynecologist so that she can investigate. The cause may be random and benign, but your doctor will still want to rule out conditions like cervical or uterine polyps, fibroids, an infection or a precursor to cancer.

Severe Cramping: Your cramps are so intense that you need to call in sick or cancel plans, and OTC meds can't help. Severe cramps can be a sign of endometriosis, which can affect your fertility if left unchecked. But endometriosis is treatable when caught early, so don't assume that horrible cramps are just something you need to endure.

What to do: Let your doctor know if you have easy periods that turn painful, which could be due to fibroids or other conditions in the uterus. (As for moderately miserable periods that become more bearable over time that can be a perk of getting older.)

You have an irregular period. You have a surprise, irregular period with no bloating, no breast tenderness, no change in appetite. The only PMS symptom you experience is a frantic need to buy tampons. You're probably not ovulating. If you have an irregular cycle and are also overweight or obese, there's a chance you could be pre-diabetic. Insulin resistance has a direct effect on the ovaries.

What to do: Your doctor may refer you to a weight loss specialist, or may talk to you about cutting back on sugary and processed foods. For these patients, getting weight under control is an imperative-especially if they plan on getting pregnant.

You got your period really early in life. The more periods you've had over the course of your life, the more years you've had active hormones in your body. This can put you at a slightly higher risk for breast cancer. We don't know exactly what's causing this connection, but it may be related to diet or environmental influences (the synthetic estrogen in the environment that affects fertility could be affecting puberty, too, she says)-factors that affect the hormones early and can present themselves as disease later in life.

What to do: In addition to doing what you can to lower your cancer risk, make sure your gynecologist is aware of your menstrual history as well as your family history of breast and other cancers.

Your period is two days early this month. This means nothing at all! Tracking apps have made women-especially those trying to conceive-hyper-alert to small changes in their menstrual cycle. Very few women ovulate at the exact same time every month, even if their cycle is almost always 28 days long, and ovulating a week early or a week late is still considered "normal."

What to do: Keep in mind that about 80 percent of women who have sex regularly get pregnant within a year. If you're having difficulty, please don't hesitate to speak to your doctor.


The Raw Deal About Raw Cookie Doughcookie 
It's delicious and eating it is the best part of cookie baking.

But the Food and Drug Administration wants us to stop consuming cookie dough. Not because of oft-maligned eggs, long linked to risks of salmonella. The culprit this time: raw flour.

The FDA is urging consumers to avoid snacking on uncooked dough or batter of any kind after an outbreak of E. coli bacteria that's infected at least 38 people in 20 states. The agency notes in a message this week that parents should be wary of homemade "play" clays and doughs - even if children don't eat it, the bacteria could be still be transmitted via their hands.

The string of sicknesses has been linked to flour that General Mills produced. The company has issued a voluntary recall of 10 million pounds it sold under the Gold Medal, Signature Kitchen's and Gold Medal Wondra brand names.

Anyone with flour in the recall should throw it away, the FDA said.
The outbreak points to a lack of understanding consumers have with disease risk related to raw ingredients, particularly flour, which isn't often treated to kill bacteria.

"Flour is derived from a grain that comes directly from the field and typically is not treated to kill bacteria," said Leslie Smoot, a senior advisor in the FDA's office of food safety, in a press release.

This bacteria can be rendered harmless during normal food preparation - what the FDA calls "kill steps" - such as baking, frying or microwaving. However, consumers who spurn such time-consuming processes can put themselves at risk with a quick lick of the spoon.

The agency notes products that intentionally contain cookie dough, such as ice cream, use flour and eggs that have been pasteurized and are therefore safe to eat in their uncooked state.

Symptoms of E. coli include diarrhea and abdominal cramps, and most people recover from them within a week, the FDA said. However some illnesses can be more severe and require hospitalization.

Is it Safe to Sunbathe While Pregnant?sunbathe
When pregnant during the summer, it's tempting to take some time to lay out in the sun for the ideal sun-kissed glow. But before you head out with your swimsuit and towel, consider the way that UV rays affect both you and your baby. While only preliminary studies have been completed, research points toward a link toward folic acid deficiency and your exposure to the sun's harsh rays. Protect yourself and your baby when coming in contact with the sun.

How the Sun Affects Folic Acid
When exposed to UV rays, folic acid degradation occurs. Since folic acid is necessary for your baby's growth and development, it presents an argument for staying out of the sun. A lack of folic acid sometimes results in physical deformities, such as spina bifida. Getting enough folic acid is especially vital during the first trimester. While the link between sunlight exposure and harm to the fetus isn't completely proven, staying out of the sun for lengthy periods of time and protecting your body is wise during the first months of pregnancy.

Pregnancy Issues
The excess of female hormones in your body during pregnancy presents specific problems for your skin when exposed to the sun. Melasma, sometimes known as pregnancy mask, occurs when the area above the lip becomes hyper-pigmented. While the appearance fades after pregnancy, exposure to sunlight darkens the pigments during pregnancy, making the darkened skin more noticeable. Laying out in the sun or using tanning beds also puts you at risk for overheating.

If you're going to be out in the sun, protect your skin and your growing baby from penetrating UVA and UVB rays by using an adequate sunscreen. Sunscreen does not harm your baby. Use a high SPF of 30 or above and reapply every few hours, after sweating or after being in the water. If possible use clothes and hats to cover your skin and avoid using tanning beds, which have not been closely studied in relation to pregnancy.

Instead of looking to UVA or UVB rays to get a warm glow come summertime, use sunless tanning lotions instead. Sunless tanning lotions contain dihydroxyacetone, which is generally safe. Wait until the second trimester to be safe, then use tanning solutions in lotion form, but not sprayed forms. Spray-on tans cause inhalation risks which could cause temporary respiratory difficulties. Instead, a mild tanning cream which darkens as you use it gives you a summer glow without danger to your baby.

Source: Livestrong

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