Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT)

Due to endometriosis, I had a hysterectomy prior to age 40. I came out of surgery with an estrogen patch in place. The patch stuck directly to my skin and slowly released the estrogen my system needed. Researchers think HRT patches may be less risky than estrogen pills because of the way they work. The patch medication is delivered through the skin and does not pass through the liver like pills do.

The patches worked for almost one year, but then I began having skin irritation around the patch site. The area would get red and swollen and itch like crazy. Before long, it was impossible to continue with the patch due to discomfort. And if I scratched the site, often the patch would come loose and fall off. This was getting expensive and not giving me the correct dosage of medication. I was told I had developed an allergy to the adhesive used in the patch. Very simple solution – we tried another patch. Within two months, the same thing began to happen.

While visiting Innerworks Holistic Health Center, I asked about other HRT options. I received information on troches, which are a small square disk, like a lozenge that comes packed in a plastic dispenser as shown at the right. One troche is placed between the cheek and gum and absorbed through the oral membranes. These troches are compounded, or put together, by a pharmacy and can be tailored to a person’s specific needs. There are three ingredients: Bi-Estrogen, Progesterone, and DHEA, which can be calibrated into a formula best for you. (Estrogen pills are available in different milligrams and you must find one closest to your individual needs). The troches have worked great for many years now, warding off hot flashes and keeping my hormone levels constant.

If you currently take an estrogen pill and are interested in a change, be sure to ask your health care provider about patches or troches. Both are great options to the standard form of HRT and may work better for you and BE better for you.

Strive to be healthy!


Disposing of Prescription Medications

Recently, I was involved in moving my parents to a nursing facility. In cleaning out their home, I found bottles and bottles of prescription medications they weren’t allowed to take with them. I had to find a way to dispose of these medicines that was acceptable and environmentally safe. After doing some research, I found FDA recommendations and used their recommended process. (Note: If anyone has found other ways, please let me know).

The FDA recommends the following: (U.S. Dept of Health and Human Services, Feb 2012)

Not all medications are handled the same. Before doing anything, check for specific disposal instructions on the drug label or patient information that accompanies the medication. Here you may find information pertaining to that drug specifically. If nothing is noted, check for a take-back program in your community. There may be a program listing in your city or government’s household trash and recycling services in the phone book. Also, check for programs through your local pharmacy. If these options are not available to you, proceed as follows:

Prescription medications may be placed in the trash if proper disposal techniques are used.

  • Remove medications from containers
  • Place medications in plastic ziplock bag or a type of container that can hold water and be sealed
  • Mix prescription medications with cat litter or coffee grounds, filling approximately half of the bag
  • Add water to the bag
  • Seal the bag and place in the trash.

The cat litter or coffee grounds not only helps to disguise the medications, but makes them less appealing to children and animals. This picture at left shows what a mixture with cat litter may look like. The cat litter absorbs the water and turns into a hard, cement-like substance that can safely be put in the trash. It will go to the landfill and eventually break down.

At one time, it was common practice to flush medications down the toilet. We now know doing this presents a risk to our environment – the ground, water, and air around us. So for safe disposal, please use the recommended FDA process.


 Strive to be healthy!

Healing Dry, Calloused Feet

Michael, my husband, has suffered with dry, calloused feet for quite some time. If untreated, his feet will split and crack, becoming very uncomfortable. Just a side note about Michael: He was first on the bandwagon for natural remedies… long before I was. In fact, he is the one who got me started on the quest for natural solutions to my allergy problems. He always insisted on treating the root of a problem, rather than only the symptoms. It took awhile, but I finally realized he was right. That’s when I began taking a different approach to daily health issues and challenges.

Okay, back to Michael’s feet… Dry, calloused feet with cracking can lead to serious problems if left untreated. This condition can lead to foot infections and more serious problems as a person ages. So this isn’t something to ignore. To relieve Michael’s foot symptoms, he first tried applying moisturizing lotions. This would give some immediate relief, but nothing long-lasting. (And, any lotions that contain alcohol or fragrance could have an adverse affect and cause additional dryness). Next, he had the idea of using oil, olive oil to be exact. He filled a plastic container with olive oil and soaked his feet. Again, this would relive the symptoms temporarily, but then he was right back to dry, calloused feet. This is when we started our search for something that would not only treat the condition, but make it go away completely.

I cannot recall where I first heard about AmLactin Lotion, but it sounded worth a try since nothing else was achieving the expected results. AmLactin is available at most drug stores, such as, Walgreens, Walmart, and Target. Michael applied AmLactin and got immediate positive results. With continued use, he can have comfortable feet, free of cracking and dryness. (I previously mentioned lotions containing alcohol are questionable, but just so you know: AmLactin contains a small amount of cetyl alcohol, which is common in moisturizers and emollients. Cetyl alcohol also keeps lotions from clumping).

AmLactin is good for many types of skin conditions, such as, eczema, psoriasis, and allergy-related skin issues.

If you suffer from dry skin problems, try AmLactin and see what you think. Michael is happy with the results… but I would love to hear from others regarding their results.

Strive to be healthy!