Tips to prevent campus sexual assault

For most college students, the year is half over and a new semester will soon start. Most students are into the groove with classes, roommates, and the social scene and it can be easy to overlook a common danger for women—campus sexual assault. Thanks to the recent release of a Rolling Stone article featuring a rape on the campus of the University of Virginia, the topic has been driven front and center once again. (more…)

Facts & Myths About Fetal Alcohol Syndrome


Fetal Alcohol Syndrome is always a tragedy because it is 100% preventable by simply abstaining from alcohol during pregnancy.

You may have heard that the occasional glass of wine does not harm a developing fetus. But research by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has found that there is no known “safe” quantity of alcohol during pregnancy. There is also no safe time of day, nor type of alcohol, so the best course of action is to abstain completely.

Symptoms of this lifelong condition include growth problems in the womb and after birth, poor coordination, muscular problems, heart defects, and many issues with development of the face. FAS can also cause the child to experience delayed thought, speech, movement, and difficulty relating to others. Drinking alcohol while pregnant can cause a multitude of other problems with the birth process including miscarriage, premature delivery, and even death.

Due to the lifelong effects FAS has on an infant, women who are pregnant or trying to get pregnant are encouraged to abstain from drinking. In the United States, half of all pregnancies are unplanned, and a woman may be pregnant for several weeks and not know it. Women who are not trying to become pregnant but who are sexually active and drink alcohol should use a form of birth control (condoms, the pill).

Unlike many pregnancy-related issues, prevention of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome is simple. That is not to say that quitting drinking is easy for everyone. Group therapy and counseling can be very effective for helping women overcome alcoholism and provide a better quality of life for themselves and their child.

If you think you may need help controlling your drinking, Dr. Hessel would be happy to recommend a supportive program or other options. You’re welcome to stop by our offices at any time.


Nutritional supplements could help ease premenstrual syndrome in some women

Nutritional supplements could help ease premenstrual syndrome in some women

It is estimated that between 8% and 20% of all women suffer some form of moderate to severe premenstrual syndrome (PMS) one to two weeks before the start of their period.  PMS has long been blamed for a variety of issues–everything from mood swings to insomnia and between.  But the reality is, that PMS is a very real, and sometimes disabling condition for those who meet it head on every month.

Despite the introduction of prescription anti-depressant type medications to the market several years ago for management of PMS and it’s more severe form known as premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD), women have been able to find some relief, but now more promising research could be turning women to nature–and a healthier diet for management. (more…)

Ageless risk: it’s never too late to prevent osteoporosis

Ageless risk: it’s never too late to prevent osteoporosis

Many people are under the impression that bone loss belongs only to the elderly.  An image of bent, fragile ladies hobbling from place to place has caused many misconceptions surrounding the condition.  While in reality, building bone starts decades before a fracture ever appears.

According to the National Institutes of Health, 90% of all bone mass has already formed by the time a young woman reaches her 17th birthday.  Whether or not osteoporosis develops later in life has several risk factors, but the early years of bone development are key to future outcomes.  At a time when soda is more appealing than milk and teens turn their noses up at spinach to reach for a hamburger, most women are not looking or thinking ahead about their future bone health. (more…)

3 Common Causes of Heavy Menstrual Bleeding

 At some point, all women may experience menorrhagia, or heavy menstrual bleeding during their periods. However, what women often think is abnormally heavy bleeding is not excessive enough to be diagnosed as menorrhagia. The best way to know if you are experiencing menorrhagia is by monitoring how often you change your pad or tampon. If you change more often than every one to two hours, or your period lasts more than 7 days, you may be experiencing menorrhagia and should consult a doctor. (more…)