Tag Archives: women

4 Surprising Truths About Coming Off Of Birth Control

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4 Surprising Truths About Coming Off Of Birth Control

Birth control has offered women more freedom than our forebears would have ever been able to imagine. Not only does it give us the chance to take full control over our reproductive choices, but it can also be used to ease the suffering that painful periods can cause.

However, with every up there tends to be a down – and birth control has its downsides. For some women, the side effects can be severe. Rather annoyingly, those side effects can be similar to the hormonal problems that they were hoping birth control would help – there’s never any predicting with synthetic hormones! The much-vaunted male contraceptive injection actually had its trial stopped as the subjects were struggling so much with the same side effects that female birth control can produce (Boohoo!)

Side effects aside, there are other reasons for coming off of birth control. The most obvious, of course, is in an attempt to get pregnant.

Whatever your reason for ditching the birth control, it’s not as simple as letting it run out and going back to normal. While using the medication, having the injection, or implant – your female hormones have been being controlled in a synthetic manner. Your body is thus going to need a little time to adjust back to normal – which can be quite the shock if you’re not expecting it. So in an effort to ensure that no one comes off of birth control uninformed, here are a few of the problems that you might find yourself experiencing:

#1 – It’ll Take a While to Become Fertile Again

If you have come off of birth control in pursuit of pregnancy, then you’re going to have to be patient. It can take up to six months for your body to regulate itself and settle into a reliable menstrual cycle. Only at this point can you begin to think of conceiving. The clock doesn’t start the moment you get rid of your birth control, it starts six months down the line.

This is important to bear in mind when it comes to worrying about a perceived failure to conceive. What seems like seven months of trying without success can actually be only a month. There is still plenty of time before you need to think about delving into resources about fertility medications and taking medical advice. It’s advisable to wait at least a year after you have ceased using birth control before worrying about a lack of conception. While 20% of women are able to fall pregnant within a month of stopping birth control, medical professionals are unlikely to want to investigate too far until the oft-quoted six months has passed.

#2 – Hormonal Acne Makes a Comeback

One of the more pleasant side effects of birth control is that it can help reduce acne, especially if you’re taking the so-called “mini pill”. Of course, the moment that you stop using the medication, there’s a chance that your acne will return.

Hormonal acne is one of the more stubborn forms of acne. If you have more than a few zits per month or the ones that you do have are deep, cystic, and cause a lot of pain – then there’s no point continuing to suffer through it. Speak to your doctor about your options for managing the condition and start a skincare regime, with a specific focus on using BHA, a form of acid found in skin, to help get to the root of the problem.

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#3 – Be Aware of Your Need for Vitamin D

Rather surprisingly, scientific evidence has shown that women who stop using birth control are liable to see depletions in their Vitamin D levels. It’s important that you get to know the symptoms of Vitamin D deficiency, so that you can be ready for action should you begin to display any signs of them.

Of course, you can also just skip right to the obvious and begin taking a Vitamin D supplement when you finish your last round of birth control. If you decide to go the natural route, then Vitamin D is primarily derived from sunlight – but make sure that you keep exposure short, and continue to use an SPF when out in the sunshine for long periods.

#4 – You Might Experience Some Emotional Upset

Most of us are well aware of what hormonal changes can do to our moods. When you stop using birth control, you may find that you have a couple of weeks where you feel like you’re in permanent PMS. It sounds miserable, but it will pass. You just need to ride it out; eventually your natural hormonal rhythms will take over and you’ll return to feeling like your usual self.

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There’s no doubt that coming off of birth control can mean changes for your body – but it’s definitely a storm that you’re going to be able to weather!

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PMS? Or Just Pissed?

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PMS? Or Just Pissed?

Heyy everyone and happy Monday. So thanks to a not so subtle title, I’m sure you guys can all gather that it’s my “time of the month”. TMI? Maybe. But, it is my page which sometimes doubles as an online journal for when I just want to shout out to the void of the world wide web and be petty. So, let’s play out this new game show style segment and see what happens…

Sarah’s Bad Mood:

Is It PMS Or Just Pissed?

The Symptoms:

Well…Let’s see:

  1.  For a snack last night I ate three pancakes, two squares of Ghirardelli chocolate, a bagel and butter, a bowl of fettuccine noodles, and a delightful couscous salad.
  2.  I just told my dog who offered me a toy to “go away”.
  3.  My stomach feels like somebody is Mortal Kombat punching it.
  4.  I am SO freaking irritable that I seriously think I could Mortal Kombat punch a hole through the wall.
  5.  Did I mention that all I want to do is eat?
  6.  I literally think that if somebody looked at me the wrong way right now that I would scream and then immediately start crying.

Now, I’m no Web MD specialist but my conclusion to this riveting (admittedly TMI) new segment is…

PMS!

You know, when I was a teenager, my periods never bothered me. They were more of a monthly annoyance than anything and that was it. No pissy moods, no cramps, no wanting to eat everything in a twelve foot radius, no mood swings, no nothing. But now, as a twenty-two year old, my periods are the biggest pain in the ass on the planet. Cramps like a mother, my mouth turns into a vacuum that consumes literally ALL the food, and mood swings that would make Ohio weather seem normal.

I’ve mentioned this to a lot of my girlfriends and about three fourths of them have similar sentiments to mine. As if being a young twenty something pathetically floundering her way through life wasn’t hard enough already, mother nature gives me a week of torture monthly. I swear guys, I legit feel like I’m going crazy and it’s just exhausting! I don’t know why but today is just wearing me out and I’m already so ready for a drink and Netflix in bed.

Sorry to the people who read this that are grossed out by periods or whatever but sometimes being a girl really sucks and mama needed to vent. Besides, now we can all rest easy in knowing that it’s PMS rather than Just Pissed! 😉

Okay, now for some questions. Ladies, how do you deal with PMS? Gentlemen, what do you do when a lady in your life is PMSing (Staying away is not an acceptable answer!!)? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Dental Differences: 3 Differences Between Male And Female Oral Health

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Dental Differences: 3 Differences Between Male And Female Oral Health

Men and women have some very obvious differences when it comes to our bodies. However, did you know that something like our teeth can also have stark differences when comparing the two genders? For example, men often only visit their dental professionals when there are serious issues that need to be dealt with and, as a result, they have less dental checkups than women do. Here are a couple more differences between men’s and women’s dental health that you probably didn’t know about.

Men Usually Have More Dental Issues: Women often take care of their teeth more than men due to regular checkups and the lesser likelihood of using products such as chewing tobacco, cigarettes, and alcohol. As a result, men put themselves at risk of developing more dental issues than women. Oral diseases usually come with very few warning signs. Bleeding gums, tartar build up, and slightly annoying pains are usually ignored by men and they get on with their daily lives. Women, on the other hand, see it as a problem and deal with the issue before they develop or let the symptoms worsen.

Oral health issues can often go unnoticed until the disease fully develops. So regardless of if you’re a male or female, make sure you check out a dental practice like Bulverde North Family Dental where you can get the optimal care not just for you, but for your entire family.

Women Brush More Often Than Men: Women are, on average, more likely to brush their teeth at least twice a day when compared to men. Women are proven to be more disciplined when it comes to oral health care. They are more likely to stick to brushing at least twice a day, flossing at least once a day, and using mouthwash at least twice a day.

Men, on the other hand, are more likely to skip out brushing days, forget to floss, or go to bed without even using mouthwash. Women are also more likely to brush their teeth and floss after a meal, while men ignore it most of the time. No matter what gender you are, you need to make sure that you brush at least twice a day in the morning and before bed. Flossing is best done at night if you can’t stomach doing it after meals and mouthwash can be skipped if you already have good teeth because it can do more damage than good in some cases.

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Women Go To The Dentist More Often: Women often care more about their health, attending regular checkups and appointments, and making time for it no matter their schedules. Dental appointments are on that list of regular visits, and women often visit a dentist at least twice a year every six months. This is recommended to both men and women, but women are far more likely to stick to this schedule. In addition to going for an initial appointment, women are more likely to attend follow-up appointments or, in some cases, book several checkups in the event that something needs to be fixed, cleaned, or treated.

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Being Female Isn’t Easy, But You Can Make It Fun!

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Being Female Isn’t Easy, But You Can Make It Fun!

As a woman, you can often feel like life is either on your shoulders or an absolute blessing – we never really spend a lot of time in-between (thank you hormones). Although we have some tough times to deal with, it’s not all that bad. Being a woman has it’s woes – think childbirth, periods, and taking longer to get ready in the morning, it also has it’s highs. When you’re female, you get to have a whole lot of fun and be girly in ways that really highlight the little perks in life. So, if you’ve all but given up on being a girl, these little reminders should pick you back up and perk you up on your (high heeled) toes.

You Get To Dress Up: What girl doesn’t love to dress up? We all did it as children, and sometimes, being able to raid your mom’s closet was the best fun you could ever have. But now, you get to do it all in your own closet – and who wouldn’t want that. Sometimes, we get wrapped up in the idea of looking good and shaming our own bodies, that we forget how fun it is to get all dressed up!

And Play Around With Makeup: If the whole idea of wearing an incredible outfit isn’t enough, we also get to wear makeup, too. To some people, it will be a chore. But, when you have enough time to do it, playing around with makeup is a whole lot of fun. Not only can you experiment with different looks and try out different hacks, but you also get to feel beautiful throughout the entire process.

We Have More Clothing Options: Whoever invented the dress and skirt should be given a medal! Not only does that mean we can explore more options to choose from in the morning (and who doesn’t love options), we also get a lot more choices than men do. Skirts and dress are huge wardrobe staples. They have the power to make you feel girly and sexy and they can be pretty exciting to buy, too.

Feeling Sexy Is Fun: And while we’re on the topic of feeling sexy, let’s talk underwear. As women, we’re well and truly spoiled. Men usually have a total of three underwear options to choose from! But us, we have so much more. Choosing sexy underwear can be just as fun as wearing it. Whenever you’re feeling down, you can buy a new set, like the Freya underwear and lingerie options and completely change your panty drawer game.

And So Is Wearing Heels: Being female really does become the ultimate treat when it comes to fashion. We’ve talked about clothing, underwear, and beauty too. But it all really kicks up a notch when we get to the footwear. A good pair of shoes is all every girl could ever ask for, right? And, flats are great and everything, but, we all have to agree that heels are the best! When you get to wear heels, you not only feel fantastic, but you look it, too!

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Women’s Health: Four Appointments Every Woman Needs To Make

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Women’s Health: Four Appointments Every Woman Needs To Make

We only get this one life, so it is important that we live it to its fullest. Which is why it is important that we make sure that we are living as well as we can and that we are as healthy as possible. Even if you are eating right, exercising, and doing all of those good things, you can still get sick. So it is important for us as women to make some appointments regularly. Then we can check for sure that all is well. So if you haven’t had any check ups for a while, what are you waiting for? Here are the places you should be making appointments for:

A Wellness Check: You should make an appointment for an overall wellness check at least annually. This is usually done with your general practitioner. Things like your height and weight can be recorded, as well as blood pressure and any other concerns that you have. It is important to remember that your wellness isn’t all physical. So it is a good time to talk to your doctor about how you are feeling overall and to check on the state of your mental health, too. This kind of check up is just general but can indicate if there are any areas of concern.

Dental Appointments: You should see a dentist at least once a year. Ideally, every six months would be best. It will keep you up to date on the state of your teeth and gums and raise any concerns if there are any. You might get referred to see a hygienist or perhaps an orthodontist if there is a specific problem. But it is all to help your overall health and well being, so it is worth taking your dentist’s advice. And if you happen to have a fear of the dentist (like me!), just remember that the appointment will be worth it to keep your pearly whites healthy!

Eye Test: Having your vision tested is really important, especially as we get older. Every two years is a good recommendation for an eye exam. But if you are having specific problems with your eyes then you should obviously make an appointment sooner. When did you last have an eye exam? When we hit our forties, our vision tends to decrease in quality. So it is a good idea to check your eyes more regularly at that point.

Cervical Smear Test: Women from the age of twenty-one on are recommended to have this exam every couple of years. Some doctors will send you out a letter when you are due for one next; others will expect you to make the appointment. So have a think about when your last one was. If it was a while ago, then it is a good idea to book one soon. Cervical cancer is one of the biggest killers among young women, so it is important to have yourself checked. Then you can deal with things if the worst does happen. If you never have it checked, how will you ever know?

Featured Image By: Pexels

Trades Of Hope

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Trades Of Hope

Hellooo everyone and welcome to a very special article here on lifewithlilred about a wonderful company that one of my good friends works for, Trades Of Hope. I had the pleasure of sitting down with Sarah White to discuss her work with the company and some of her favorite accessories that are offered through her Trades Of Hope party to kick start the holiday shopping season. For those of you who don’t know, Trades Of Hope employs women artisans in third world countries so they can earn a fair living wage to help provide for themselves and their families. Take a look at part of our interview conducted by yours truly and then stick around to see some of Sarah’s gorgeous fall favorites:

  • Lil Red: Ever since I’ve known you, you’ve been passionate about volunteering your time for programs that help women world wide. What would you say is the most rewarding part of being involved with Trades Of Hope?
  • Sarah: I’ve always wanted to have a tangible way to help women coming out of poverty but I specifically have a passion for women coming out of trafficking, like many of the Trades Of Hope artisans. I’ve been involved with various programs that help raise money for women, but Trades Of Hope isn’t a charity – these women are hired, paid a fair wage, and are then able to take care of their families in a long term way. Trades Of Hope is an organization that helps women stop their cycle of poverty and betters their lives, I think that’s the best part.
  • LR: If you could say something to the Trades Of Hope artisans, what would it be?
  • S: I think it would just be…Thank you for what you’re doing. Thank you for making these products to support your families. We care about you and we love you…I would keep it pretty simple.
  • LR: You actually introduced Trades Of Hope to me one afternoon over coffee. If someone wanted to get involved with working for the company, what should they do?
  • S: To become a Compassion Entrepreneur, which is what we call ourselves, anyone can reach out to me for additional information! (Sarah’s contact info will be posted below.)
  • LR: Trades Of Hope offers an abundance of beautiful handcrafted accessories through catalog and on their site. It must be hard to pick a favorite!
  • S: It is! Of course I love the Mosaic Clutch and the Mustard Infinity Scarf but out of the jewelry the Julia from Guatemala is one of my favorites. The necklace was made from a young artist aging out of her orphanage and it’s simple but so pretty. If you look closely on the silver pendant the fingerprint of the artist is engraved in it.
  • LR: Are there any items on the site that are considered a fan favorite by the shoppers?
  • S: Definitely. The Eternal Seed necklace is very popular (it’s a Lil Red favorite too) as well as the Haiti Signature Bracelet which is made out of cereal boxes. (The pictures of the accessories mentioned can be seen below, as well as the Kala necklace, which I’m the proud owner of!) Not only does the bracelet help support our artisans but it’s great for the environment as well.

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Mosaic Clutch: I got to see this cute clutch in person and it’s even better in real life, if that’s even possible. Sarah is a self proclaimed “bag girl” and the Mosaic Clutch, made by Trades Of Hope artisans in Guatemala is one of her must have staples for fall.

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Mustard Infinity Scarf: This beautiful scarf was made by TOH artisans in Cambodia who have survived acid attacks. Despite such horrific events, the amazing women making these scarves have found joy again in their craft and they truly do it so well. Sarah has also deemed this scarf as one of her must have autumn pieces because of how much she likes the color! My friend has great style and would pair this infinity scarf with a hat of the same color, a sharp dark green jacket, dark wash denim, and a tall pair of boots for a fall OOTD. I’m a fan!

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Sarah will be hosting a party to ring in the holiday shopping season and it promises to be a lot of fun! Anyone who places an order through Sarah’s party has the opportunity to win free or half off items as the “hostess rewards”. The shopping extravaganza will be up and running for at least two weeks, so you’ll have lots of time to make your purchases and maybe get lucky by winning some rewards! Unfortunately, Trades Of Hope only ships in the US, but if you live abroad and are interested in any of the products seen on the site, you can email Sarah who will do the best she can to get you your accessories.

Sarah’s contact info and party links:

I had so much fun chatting about Trades Of Hope with my dear friend and before we parted ways, she gave some terrific ideas on stocking stuffers for the holiday season. Not only does Trades Of Hope offer chic accessories but you can also find items for kids, men, home decor, and beauty. Sarah recommends the soap and chapsticks from the site as a sweet and small gift but she’s partial to the jewelry! “All of the Trades Of Hope jewelry comes in a pretty bag and you can wear it and think of the person who got it for you” she says. I, for one, would love to find the Eternal Seed Necklace under my tree! Sarah can be seen below sporting some Trades Of Hope earrings and a mega watt smile! I see you!!

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Writing about Trades Of Hope was such a blast and I encourage all of you to do some shopping at the links provided above! What is your favorite item on the website? Do you have any questions about the company for Sarah? I wanna hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah