I think when most people think “healthy living” they conjure up an image of someone eating lots of fruits and veggies and exercising on a regular basis. In fact, when you type “healthy living” into google the only images that pop up are of fruits/veggies and people working out.
And while what we eat and how active we are are important aspects of living a healthy life, they aren’t the only things. Being healthy also means not missing your yearly doctor’s exam, wearing sunscreen, getting those freckles (ok, maybe they’re moles but I hate that word) checked out by your dermatologist, and drinking plenty of water. These things might not be as glamorous as eating that plate of brightly colored veggies or running 6 miles before everyone else has even dragged their butt out of bed in the morning, but they’re equally important.
What got me thinking about all those extra things is two-fold. First, I discovered a weird “spot” on my back. I refer to it as a spot because I honestly have no idea what it is. I thought it was a mole, but I had August take a close-up photo last week and a mole it definitely is not. I immediately scheduled a dermatologist appointment and texted my Dad a picture of it (I’m lucky cause my Dad is a Doc, though not a dermatologist). He didn’t seem too concerned, said it was most likely something that started with an H and ended in -oma, but that I should still visit the dermatologist as they would most likely want to remove it. Not gonna lie, the time between taking the photo and talking to my Dad I was pretty nervous.
The other reason I was thinking about all the little things we can do to make ourselves healthy is a bit more personal, so for those of you who get a little squeamish with talks of periods and gynecologists, now might be the time to click that X in the upper corner.
First a little bit of background. I didn’t start my period until the age of 13. Apparently all that gymnastics made me slightly behind the curve. And by 16 my dermatologist had prescribed birth control to help manage my skin. From 16 to 25 I took the pill without complication, but around 25 I started having a lot of pain in my lower abdomen which I found out was the result of fluid-filled cysts developing on my ovaries each month. After many back and forth trips to the doctor I surmised that the culprit was my low-dose birth control. Rather than try to find a new pill, I simply stopped taking it altogether. Enter in the worst cramps I’ve ever experienced. So bad that without some sort of medication all I can do is walk around because that’s the only position that brings any sort of relief.
For those who might not know, the cramping sensation is caused by contractions of the uterus that is stimulated by prostaglandins released by the old uterine lining. So, more prostaglandin release results in worse cramps. So, I was wondering what all of you do to ward off or lessen your cramps? I can’t possibly be alone in suffering from severe cramps and I wanted to ask for your ideas. I know that exercise and taking ibuprofen helps but beyond that I’m at a loss. There have to be some good, natural tricks for warding off these cramps every month. Does drinking tea help or sleeping on your back the third Wednesday of every month? I’m looking for anything that might curb the discomfort (though I’d rather it not be medication).
What extra things do you think make up a healthy lifestyle?
Please tell me I’m not the only one who suffers from cramps! And if you do get them, how do you deal with them? Any suggestions would be helpful!