Wife, Mom, Nana, Physician Assistant, cancer survivor, Aromatherapist, Functional Medicine Advocate

 

I have never been one to take a lot of medications, but the older I got, I found myself turning to pharmaceuticals to address the many obstacles I was starting to face.  After all, it's all we know right? One big overwhelming obstacle that was all consuming was the rollercoaster of peri-menopause or that period of time before menopause.  Darn the hot flashes, insomnia, increasing muscle aches and pains, food cravings that were like a big daunting oppression.  Add to that, mood changes (can I say irritability, depression?) 


Then I got hit with the big one!!!!  Breast cancer…..what the?  Yes, a small tumor that required a lumpectomy and 33 radiation treatments. Post-surgical pain, scarring, radiation skin changes, it was pretty much awful!!


But!!!!  I found something!!!  Something that allowed me to stop the antidepressants, something that helped me sleep, something that helped with the muscle aches and pains.  Something that helped me on the roller coaster of breast cancer treatment and recovery!!!!!  Something that is not a pharmaceutical made in a lab but is natural and healthy and free of chemicals and toxins.  


Today I feel stronger than ever!  I just had a normal mammogram and breast MRI.  I have found several solutions for sleep (I do have to change it up) and for the mood thing?  Well, don’t ask my husband.  For the aches and pains, WOW!!!!  I’m amazed at that solution.  Now, I’m not going to sugarcoat things too much.  I will occasionally take an Aleve, but, it is rare!!!!  The only thing that is not gone are the Hot Flashes!!!!!!!  Prayer and deep breathing are my main go to for that!! 


Anyway, wanna know more?  Do you want to know what I do for all of the things?  Connect with me, go with me on the journey, find your solutions with these products that are natural and toxin free with a company you can trust!  Come on!!! Let's do this!!  

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join my FB group dedicated to "Helping Women Going through the Change" https://www.facebook.com/groups/1091352231355245

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Brain, Body & Oils Blog

Thermography vs Mammography

Thermography vs Mammography
Thermography vs Mammography - My Mom's Story
My Mom was diagnosed with breast cancer when she was 56.  It was a lump they had been following for a while and it was time to get it removed.  She went into the hospital for a lumpectomy and came out without a breast!  I was so angry about that!!!! It seemed so drastic!!   She wore a prosthesis from then on and later didn’t even wear that!  It layed on the table most of the time.  Her fake boob!


My Story

When I was 32, my provider demanded I get a baseline mammogram due to my Mom’s history.  The girl that did the test at the hospital, Linda, (I don't fondly remember her name) pressed the plates together against my breast so hard that there was an audible “pop” followed by a dark green discharge that came out of the nipple.  I was also bruised all around the breast.  That experience pretty much created a deep fear in me to ever get another mammogram.  I avoided it for years after the recommended age for screening had passed.  

Finally, (I don’t remember my age), I came to my senses and scheduled another mammogram.  This time there was a dedicated breast center and the experience was much more tolerable.  I am a terrible patient, so I let the yearly screening come and go and was not good at being diligent with that.  Besides, my mammograms were usually normal.  A couple of times, there were some “calcifications” that looked suspicious so they would call me back in for a diagnostic mammogram to look further.  

In 2015, I was supposed to get my screening mammogram done in January.  I already mentioned I am a terrible patient and before I realized it the year was almost gone.  I scheduled my test on my birthday in November.  I figured that would be an easy way to remember to get this done every year.  I got a call the next day that I had a suspicious lesion that was likely cancer.  WHAT?????  Yep, ER/PR+ HER2- 1 cm DCIS tumor.  I had a breast MRI to make sure there were no abnormal findings anywhere else in the surrounding musculature or bones.  It was all normal.  I had a lumpectomy and they removed 4 lymph nodes.  Once the surgical site healed, I had 33 radiation treatments.  It was a scary process but I am, at the time of this writing, cancer free.  

I had decided this last year I would look into thermography to see if there were any inflammatory changes going on.  They did a baseline test and 3 months later repeated that and everything was normal.  



Here’s what I know about options for breast imaging. 

Mammography is standard of care.  It is a form of xray that examines breast tissue and identifies abnormalities that could be cancer.  It can also detect possible abnormalities that need further imaging as in the case of calcifications.  This can cause anxiety and is more costly.  Mammograms are recommended starting at age 50.  The starting age used to be 40 but the guidelines have changed unless you have a first degree relative with a history of breast cancer.  The guidelines also state the screening can be done every 2 years.  This is a discussion you should have with your provider.  

Drawbacks of mammogram are xray exposure and deep compression of breast tissue and false findings resulting in more imaging.




Thermography is another screening tool but is not considered standard of care.  It is a form of infrared technology that detects and records temperature changes on the surface of the skin.  It is thought that if there are cancer cells then those cells create inflammation which will show up on the imaging as elevated skin temperature.  There are some benefits to consider - see the above chart

Thermography is not recommended as a substitute for mammography or breast MRI

Moving forward, I will continue to get mammograms and may continue to alternate that screening with thermography.  This last year I did only thermography.  This year I will do another mammogram (ugh!!)

If you aren't in a community that is filled with education and information about hormones and women's health then join my community here:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/1091352231355245
Interested in seeing if your hormones are balanced or out of whack?  check this out here!! 


Menopause and High Blood Pressure - Is it a Thing?

Menopause and High Blood Pressure - Is it a Thing?
Have you experienced high blood pressure and you are also having signs and symptoms of peri-menopause or you are in menopause?  This blog addresses this topic, so check it out!!
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Going Through the Change Doesn't Have to Suck!!

Going Through the Change Doesn't Have to Suck!!
Yay!!!  You are in!!  Please add my info to your contact list so you get what you came for!
Check your email (if you don't see it, check your spam)
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What does the Thyroid do?

The function of the thyroid is to maintain metabolism.  Metabolism is the chemical process that occurs in the body in order to maintain life.  So if your thyroid is out of whack, you could have symptoms like fatigue, weight gain, constipation, heavy periods, dry skin, hair that is thinning or falling out. That is hypothyroidism or underactive thyroid. The opposite of that is hyperthyroidism.  This is where everything speeds up!!!  Your heart may palpitate or you have diarrhea or you can’t sleep.  Your periods can be next to nothing and you may lose weight rapidly.  The thyroid is vital for basically controlling everything.  
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#thyroid #functionalmedicine #essentialoils #youngliving

Menopause Got You Down?

Menopause Got You Down?

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Learn About Arthritis
Arthritis refers to inflammation of a joint. It can be painful!!!  OTC meds can in the long run be harmful!!  Want to know more? Read this blog/newsletter.
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Essential Oils -the Basics

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There is a lot to know about essential oils!!  If you have googled that topic, then you understand the confusion and overwhelmingness of it.  Here is an e-book for you that is packed with info to help you get started.

If you like what you read and want to know more......connect with me!!
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As a physician assistant and certified aromatherapist with an interest in alternative and functional medicine, I help people learn other choices for managing their health & wellness options.
  

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