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January's Mindful Monthly Moments and Happy New Year!

Let me start off by saying "thank you" for taking the time to follow and read my blog, and all of the encouragement that you have provided during my role transition as a Women's Health Occupational Therapist.

As such I have decided to take a different approach with my blog writing this year in order to deliver content that aligns with my practice's mission and vision of improving maternal and women health outcomes through evidence- and occupation-based care.

Each month, content will fall under these 5 main categories: Practice Highlights, What I'm Reading, SEWcially Connected, Movement Matters, and Upcoming Events. Each blog post will be aptly titled "[Month's] Mindful Monthly Moments".

So lets' dive in.

Practice Highlights: CBD Infused Lubrication
Dyspareunia, or pain with sexual intercourse is one of the common diagnosis that I "treat" in clinic as a Pelvic Floor Occupational Therapist. It can be categorized as superficial or deep, as well as primary or secondary. Superficial means that pain is localized to the vulva and/or vaginal entrance, where as "deep" is associated with deep penetration. Primary indicatess that the pain is provoked/experienced at the beginning of intercourse, and secondary means that pain is experienced after pain-free intercourse has been initiated. While there are many associated causes for Dyspareunia, some of the ways that it shows up clinically are: red patches on skin of the vulva/buttocks, vaginal dryness, and/or hypertonic (tight/overactive) pelvic floor muscles (PFMs). While neuromuscular re-education is commonly used as an intervention strategy to assists patients with improving coordination, up training, and down training of the PFMs , CBD infused lubrication has also been used as an intervention to address both vaginal dryness and pelvic floor hypertonicity, thus providing additional "anecdotal" therapeutic benefits for maximizing sexual health outcomes. While this is certainly promising for those who reports obtaining pain relief with use of CBD infused lubrication, due to lack of rigorous randomized controlled studies, potential long term harmful side effects are unknown. Also, it should be noted that there is only ONE CBD based drug/product that has been approved by the US FDA Administration, a pharmacological/drug used for treating drug-resistant pediatric epileptic seizures associated with several rare syndromes. Therefore, use of CBD infused lubrication should be used with caution as there is currently no oversight with regards to regulation and validity of the composition of ingredients that are printed on the product labels.

What I'm Reading
Power Through Partnership: How Women Lead Better Together
This is a book that I've read over a year ago, and one that I feel is worth reading again due to the various opportunities I've had to connect with and form relationships with other women's health providers whose services are complimentary to the services that I provide through my practice. So many good nuggets to glean from this book, including the benefits of partnership for both personal and professional gain.


SEWcially Connected: What I'm Sewing
I'm SEW excited about relaunching the very first women's health service that I offered through my practice: The SEWcially Connected Psychosocial Support Group for mother's who are in the up to 1 year postpartum period. Initially created as an in-person,8 week program, the program will transition to a monthly meet-up, alternating between in-person and virtual gatherings. While the below project will be completed during weeks 7 and 8, it is one of my TNT (tried and true) patterns (Simplicity 6403/New Look S0385) that can be worn and styled for cooler and warmer temps alike. Pictures of the finished look will be shared in next month's "Mindful Moments".



Healthy Choices
As a women's health provider, I am very passionate and intentional about doing at least ONE thing that will support my mental and/or physical health & well-being. This month, I decided to be intentional about my "healthy" snacks consumption, in order to minimize trips to the vending machine when I'm at work and overall sugar intake. Well, my Seleware Stackable Food Storage Container (pictured on the left) has been helping me do just that. However, this isn't my first time using a stackable unit. About a year ago, I purchased the GoStack (pictured). While the GoStak did provide a more convenient and compact way for me to carry a variety of snacks, in the end I wasn't pleased with the portion amount. Although the Seleware is what I'm using, the GoStak is use for my workout powders, pills, vitamin, etc. A win-win situation if you ask me.


Upcoming Events: Friday, February 2nd, Go Red For Women!
Go Red for Women is a national campaign powered by the American Heart Association to increase awareness about the impact of heart disease on Women's Health. This national call to action is symbolized by the "red dress" and since its inception in 2004, takes place the first Friday in February.
Join me and countless others in wearing red this Friday to show (y)our love and support for those living with and/or lost to heart disease as we forge ahead in the fight to "end cardiovascular diseases, the leading cause of death in women".

Reference(s):
AHA. Go red for women. Retrieved from https://www.goredforwomen.org/en/about-go-red-for-women/joinTayyeb.

Koturbash, I., & MacKay, D. (2020). Cannabidiol and other cannabinoids: From toxicology and pharmacology to the development of a regulatory pathway. The Journal of Diet Supplement, 17(5):487-492.

M. & Gupta, V. (2023). Dyspareunia. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing.

Sholler, D.J., Schoene, L., & Spindle, T. R. (2020). Therapeutic efficacy of cannabidiol (CBD): A review of the evidence from clinical trials and human laboratory studies. Current Addiction Reports, 7(3), 405-412.
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