Australia Day is January 26, 2015.

Aussie beach

This year, Australia Day falls on the 26th of January. This day is intended to support and spread the values of Australians as a whole.
My youngest child and my only daughter has been living in Australia since June 2014. She has enjoyed her time there tremendously and experienced an amazing array of activities, events, travel, friendships and terrific employment opportunities. This picture is one that she sent me recently.
The only time I traveled to Australia was with my daughter on a cruise that originated in Hong Kong and traveled south, eventually taking us to Darwin, Brisbane and ultimately Sydney.
We fed koalas, kangaroos, toured the world famous Sydney Opera House, walked across the bridge and enjoyed the sights and the people.
The cost of living is tremendous there so it is very expensive to eat and drink. I remember taking us to a restaurant for ‘happy hour’ and a Smirnoff cocktail was $22 and that was Aussie dollars, which at the time was even more expensive then US dollars.
It is almost surreal when I look at her photos because the colors are so vivid and lustrous. We chatted on the telephone yesterday and she told me about all of the festivities that are involved in celebrating Australia Day.
Whether you are Australian or not, there are a variety of ways in which you can recognize the holiday, including but not limited to:

If you are interested in holding a public Australia Day event in your community, allow the Australia Day website to broadcast and promote your event!
If you are Australian, take a moment to think about what makes you proud to be whom you are. The Australian of the Year Awards acts as a nationwide celebration of the achievements of Australians.
Australians living in America can partake in an Australian Citizenship Affirmation ceremony where they can affirm their commitment and loyalty to Australia.
Are you simply an #AussieFan? Share the word on all of your social media pages describing what makes you passionate about Australia.
http://www.australiaday.org.au/ for more information.

January is Cervical Cancer Awareness Month

cervical cancer

During the month of January, awareness and education of the disease is promoted in hopes of increasing early detection.

Cervical cancer is caused by a virus called HPV. HPV is short for human papilloma virus. This virus can cause changes in the cervix. HPV is not the same as HIV. HPV is not a new virus, but we are learning more about it. Most men and women who have ever had sex have had HPV at some time in their lives. HPV is spread through sex, and it can cause an infection in the cervix. The infection usually doesn’t last very long because your bodies are able to fight it.

HPV infection can change cervix cells into pre-cancer cells. Pre-cancer cells are not cancer, and they don’t cause changes that we would notice. Most cells with early pre-cancer changes go back to normal on their own. If they don’t, they can be treated. Sometimes, if they aren’t found and treated, the pre-cancer cells can turn into cancer. Cervical cancer can also be treated if it’s found. Very few HPV infections lead to cervical cancer. Because HPV is so common, any woman who has ever had sex can get cervical cancer. But, most women who get HPV do not get cervical cancer.

Women who get their tests for cervical cancer as often as they should are least likely to get cervical cancer. Some women have a greater chance of getting cervical cancer if they: have HPV and it doesn’t go away, have HIV or AIDS, smoke.

Most people will never know they have or had HPV. But if the HPV doesn’t go away on its own, it can cause changes in the cervix cells. These changes usually show up on Pap tests.

How is HPV treated?

There’s no treatment for the type of HPV that causes changes in cervix cells, but most HPV infections go away without treatment. There are no medicines to treat HPV. There are treatments for the cell changes in the cervix that HPV can cause. If your Pap test shows cervix cell changes, your doctor or nurse will talk with you about treatments, if needed.

If you are interested in spreading the word in your community and promoting the cause, try these ideas:

You can contact your local media and ask them to cover Cervical Cancer Awareness month.
Social media has such a heavy influence nowadays and many of us forget how simple spreading a message can be. Simply change your Facebook and Twitter status’ and pictures to Cervical Health Awareness and use the hashtag: #CervicalHealthMonth
Log on to http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/Risk/HPV

Most importantly, explain to everyone you know the importance of recognizing this special month. When more people are in the know, early detection is possible.

Join me in recognizing January as Cervical Cancer Awareness Month!

January is Blood Donor Month

Donate blood

Will You Be Saving A Life And Donating In January?

January is Blood Donor Month, which means it is time for us to help change lives. There are a wide range of diseases and crises that call for the need for immediate blood. As a blood donor, we have the ability to transform an individual’s situation into a far less unpleasant one.

Donating blood on a regular basis is a very honorable habit, as it makes the world go round. There are a wide range of reasons why an individual would choose to become a blood donor, including knowing someone with an ailment that requires blood transfusions or simply believing it is the right thing to do. No matter what the reasoning is, our honorable efforts are greatly appreciated.

Blood is a liquid that circulates through the body via a pathway of blood vessels, arteries and veins, carrying nutrients, oxygen, antibodies and other necessities of life to every cell and tissue throughout the entire body. Blood is also the means by which waste and waste byproducts are removed from the cells. Think of the circulatory system as a transportation system consisting of vehicles, roads and highways, similar to how we move goods and products throughout the world!

Of course, we don’t have little vehicles speeding through our veins, so how does blood do this? Whole blood is made up of red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets, all which are suspended in a fluid called plasma. Each of these components of our blood has a very specific and important job.

Red blood cells contain hemoglobin, a type of protein that gives blood its red color, and are primarily responsible for carrying fresh oxygen throughout the body while removing spent carbon dioxide from the cells.

White blood cells are very important to our immune system; they protect us from foreign invaders such as bacteria, viruses and fungi.

Platelets are the smallest-sized components in whole blood, but they are mighty in importance. They are responsible for blood clotting, which helps stop bleeding should we suffer from a cut or other trauma to the circulatory system.

Plasma is the fluid protein and salt solution in which the red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets are suspended. Plasma is 90 percent water and also contains several proteins that aid in blood clotting and the creation of antibodies. It is vital in providing blood volume, hydration, and mineral exchanges throughout the body, which are critical for proper cell function.

A whole blood donation can be separated into its different components and used for specific treatments for cancer or other illnesses, bleeding disorders or traumatic injury. In fact, since a single blood donation can be separated into components, your donation may help three different transfusion patients!

Medical advances and modern surgical techniques, (such as cancer treatments, organ transplants and open heart surgery), have increased the need for blood. In addition, the advancing age of the Baby Boomer generation has caused stress on the blood supply. Our national blood supply must be ready for everyday needs as well as the unexpected, such as accidents, natural or manmade disasters. Volunteer blood donors are needed year-round.

All blood is not the same! Different people have different blood types.

Rebecca Brightman, M.D., Hormone Replacement Therapy

Dr. Rebecca Brightman

Please join Maria and her conversation with Dr. Rebecca Brightman about Hormone Replacement Therapy and menopause. It is a very informative interview about the latest developments in the field.
Dr. Brightman is a Board Certified OBGYN in private practice in New York City since 1990. Her particular areas of interest include: the management of perimenopause, menopause, contraception, pre-pregnancy counseling and obstetrics. She is a fellow of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology (ACOG) and the North American Menopause Society (NAMS) and is also a NAMS certified menopause practitioner. Dr. Brightman graduated Magna Cum Laude from the University of Pennsylvania in 1982 and received her Medical Degree from the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in 1986. She completed her residency training in Obstetrics and Gynecology at The Mount Sinai Hospital in New York. Dr. Brightman is an Assistant Clinical Professor of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Science at The Mount Sinai School of Medicine and is a Voluntary Attending at the Mount Sinai Hospital.

In addition to her clinical responsibilities, Dr. Brightman serves on the advisory board of Women’s Day Magazine and she has been quoted in other popular magazines and blogs for women. She has discussed women’s health issues on NBC-The Today Show, CBS-The Morning Show, CBS Evening News, Fox-The Morning Show, ABC-World News Tonight, Yahoo’s-The Shine and Katie’s Take with Katie Couric. She has spoken at the 92nd Street Y, has been published in peer-reviewed journals as well as in Letters to the Editor of the New York Times. She is on an Advisory panel for TEVA Women’s Health and JDS Therapeutics and is also a Women’s Health Expert for L’Oreal/Vichy Laboratoires and Proctor and Gamble. Dr. Brightman is also listed by Castle-Connolly as one of the top physicians in the New York Metro Area. She is married to an Ophthalmologist and has two sons. Her passions include: spending time with her family, friends, and her 3 Cavalier King Charles Spaniels as well as fitness, reading and fashion.
Board Certification

National Board of Medical Examiners-1987
Certification-American Board of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ABOG), 1992
Recertification-ABOG, 2013

Privileges: Mt. Sinai Medical Center, ATTENDING, Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Science

Teaching Appointments: Mt. Sinai School of Medicine, ASSISTANT CLINICAL PROFESSOR, Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Science

Professional Education: Certified NAMS Menopause Practitioner, 2013
Residency and Chief Residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology-Mt. Sinai Medical Center, NY. 1986–90
M.D.-Mt. Sinai School of Medicine 1986
B.A., magna cum laude-University of Pennsylvania 1982

Society Memberships: Member of the North American Menopause Society (NAMS), 2013
Fellow-American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), 1993
Mt. Sinai School of Medicine Alumni Association
University of Pennsylvania Alumni Association

Voter Information Tool

Please use this tool to assist you if you don’t know where your polling place is and please feel free to share this other folks that may be in need of the information as well. Tomorrow is our General Election in the United States and it is imperative that if you are registered to vote, that you actually do vote!

Please read yesterday’s post about my feelings on this matter, I won’t be redundant here by repeating what I wrote yesterday. Suffice it to say, it is our responsibility as good citizens to elect those leaders who we believe will serve our best interest as well as the less fortunate and those that may be unable to speak for themselves.

I must say I am a big believer in teaching people how to fish instead of handing them fish but I also know that there are times when through no fault of our own, we find ourselves in need of assistance and that’s when those programs become essential and why they exist.
The hours that the polls are open do vary by state and time zone.

Time zone note: Arizona and Hawaii do not observe Daylight Savings Time (DST). Thirteen states have multiple time zones. Idaho and Oregon are split between the Mountain and Pacific time zones. Kansas, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Texas are divided between Central and Mountain time zones. Florida, Indiana, Michigan, Kentucky, and Tennessee are split between Eastern and Central time zones. Alaska is divided between the Alaska time zone and the Hawaii-Aleutian time zone. Whew!

So please use our guide below or log on to your local county/clerk/recorder website for your community to fully understand where you will be going and at what time you are able to cast your ballot.

 

General Election, USA, Tuesday, November 4, 2014.

General Election While we’ve kept up our blog posts on a regular (usually 3 times a week a www.TheMariaSanchezShow.com) basis, we’ve taken some time away from the website and the podcasts to focus on some other professional opportunities, political campaigns and family matters.  It is terribly important that if you are a registered voter that you vote on Tuesday, November 4th. I’ve been fairly political most of my life. I was always the President of my class or a Student Body Officer while in high school and pretty much the same scenario in college when I attended and graduated from the University of California, Davis.

As an adult, I registered at the age of 18 and feel that our votes count. One of my favorite personal mottos is, “one voice, one vote, one pay check.” What say, what we do, how we spend our money and how we vote matters! I think far too often people feel that it is one vote, what could it possibly matter?

Well it does. Whether we agree politically or not really isn’t the point. That we participate in the process of our democracy and go to the polls is really more important.
Our representatives in our state capitals and in the corridors of Washington, D.C. need to be there because the majority of the people voted and thus our leaders represent the majority of the electorate. That seems pretty straightforward to me.

Unfortunately, what we’ve seen in the past is that the minority of people show up, mostly the extremists of both parties and thus they elect the exception or the more polarizing candidate.

So please, whatever you do, V-O-T-E on Tuesday!

If you have an absentee ballot and you haven’t mailed it yet, BRING IT IN PERSON to your polling place. The postmark does NOT count! It has to be received on or before November 4th so don’t trust it to the USPS at this point. Hold on to it and take it to your polling place.

Drs. Chuck and JoAnn Bird, board certified clinical sexologists

Drs. Chuck & JoAnn Bird

Please join Maria as she has a conversation with Drs. Chuck and JoAnn Bird who are Board Certified Clinical Sexologists, licensed mental health counselors who are also sex therapists.  Drs. Chuck and JoAnn Bird talk about their professions and how they help various clients with couples counseling and coaching, discernment counseling, workshops for couples, individual therapy and sex therapy.

You may be asking what is sex therapy? Sex therapy is a specialized form of therapy that focuses on intimacy and sexual concerns or issues. It is a solution-focused therapy designed to reach goals that are established by those seeking services. Sex Therapy consists of discussions in the therapists’ office, along with special exercises designed to make you feel more relaxed in your sexual interactions. These exercises are practiced by the individual or couple in the privacy of their own home. At no time does it involve clients performing sexual acts in front of the therapist or sexual contact between the therapist and clients. The goal of sex therapy is to maximize one’s potential for satisfaction, pleasure and happiness.
Because Drs. Bird practice in the state of Florida these are the requirements that they have to meet for their state. A licensed therapist who has specialized training in Sexology (the science of sexual behavior) and the diagnosis and treatment of sexual issues/concerns. A licensed therapist must meet the State of Florida requirements (additional education/training and supervision) to be called a Sex Therapist. A Sexologist is a clinician that holds a doctoral degree (Ph.D.) in the field of Sexology.
Sex therapy is for people of all ages, gender, and sexual orientation, who have sexual concerns or want to improve their quality of life by dealing with sexual issues. Sex therapy is for individuals or couples.
If you are in a relationship and are both available to see a sex therapist, that is highly recommended. No matter which one of you feels “responsible” or “blamed” for the problem, it is a problem that both of you are experiencing. It has become a “couples problem”. If you, as a couple, are interested in having a satisfying sex life, you will benefit from being in sex therapy together.