Archive for November, 2019

Breast Care

Author: Dr. Larita

Have you ever found a lump in your breast? Last month I saw what looked like a bruise on my left breast and it was sore to the touch. I had just had a mammogram two months before that so I was not worried about the bruise until I felt the lump. I told my husband about it and he said, “just call the doctor.”

I went to work the next day and worried about the lump the whole time I was there. I had a doctor’s appointment that afternoon so afterwards, I went to the mammography clinic at a nearby hospital and almost lost it when the assistant said yes, I should go to the doctor even after a recent mammogram. She assured me that most lumps are nothing and to try not to worry, just make that appointment. Luckily, my doctor saw me right away and I did find out that it was just fibrous tissue and I don’t have cancer. At that point, I started looking for alternative health strategies for breast issues and there are many.

As I’ve said before, the best medicine is prevention so always do your monthly breast exam. When you’ve done that, you should firm and tone your breasts. To exercise the pectoral muscles, grip opposite hands or wrists and push your arms together so they are pushing against each other, thus exercising the pecs. Then massage the whole breast area in a circular motion once a day. Use the following formula for this massage oil: combine 5 drops geranium, 10 drops lemongrass, 5 drops parsley seed, 5 drops carrot oil and 5 drops clary-sage. Add this mixture to 2 tablespoons sweet almond oil.


Desert Living

Author: Dr. Larita

There are pluses and minuses to living in every environment. For me, the pluses of desert living far outweigh the minuses. The sunshine has done wonders for my mood and the native plants do not wreak havoc on my overactive allergy-prone immune system each spring.

One minus is the effect the sunshine and the dry weather have on my skin. To combat negative effects of too much sun, I always wear a hat and plenty of sunscreen when I go out. I also apply skin moisturizer liberally in the morning and before bed each night.

My daughter has had really painful menstrual cramps ever since she first began having periods. She can barely function during those days of the month. It has been about 12 years since I have had any menstrual pains and believe me, I don’t miss them at all.  (I guess that let’s you know about how old I am!) For those of you who suffer through those monthly pains, I have an aromatherapy formula for you that won’t cost much, is all natural, and will relieve your menstrual cramps.

  • 15 drops peppermint
  • 10 drops cypress
  • 5 drops lavender

Add these oils to 1 ounce of evening primrose oil and mix well. This blend will last for some time if you mix it in a clean, dark-colored glass bottle. Gently message a small amount into the abdominal area  for menstrual pain.

I’ve always preferred to use products that feature natural ingredients rather than products that use manufactured, man-made ingredients. There’s something about natural and organic products that tends to provide a better quality to most items. Obviously, this is something that I always pay attention to when it comes to food, but this idea can also apply to other items.

For instance, I also like to use natural products when it comes to skin care, as well as other natural health-related products. One of the items that I’ve been using most frequently has been a line of natural moisturizers that I think have been working like a charm. I attribute the product’s ability to work so well on its natural ingredients, because they’ve always worked great for me thus far.

Shock is what happens when there is not enough blood flow to body tissues as a result of the circulatory system. Symptoms might include weakness, fast heart rate, fast breathing, sweating, anxiety and increased thirst. These symptoms can be followed by confusion, unconsciousness or even cardiac arrest.

If a friend is in shock or maybe simply fainted but symptoms are not so bad that you need to take them to the hospital, treat them with the following blend before putting them to bed. Dilute this blend in 2 teaspoons of sweet almond oil and massage the whole body before bed:

Yesterday we discussed essential oils you can use to calm heart palpitations when needed. Today I am giving you two synergistic blends you can use for the same problem. First, you can blend 2 drops lavender, 1 drop chamomile and 2 drops geranium in an amber colored bottle. Put a couple drops of this blend on a tissue and inhale. If you prefer, you can double or triple this blend and add it to an inhaler for your use.

Secondly, you can massage your whole torso nightly with the following oils diluted in 2 tablespoons of jojoba oil:

  • 10 drops lavender
  • 10 drops chamomile
  • 3 drops rosemary
  • 7 drops lemon

Lastly, take a warm bath before going to bed and add 2 drops of chamomile and 2 drops of lemon essential oils to the water.

Palpitations is the medical term for awareness of the heartbeat. The awareness can be because the person is paying close attention to their own heartbeat or it could also be because the heart is actually beating harder than normal. Reasons for your heart to beat more forcibly than usual are fright, shock or anxiousness.

To calm yourself when you are having palpitations for those reasons, you can use neroli essential oil which has very calming properties and can be most effective when that is the case. To administer the neroli, simply sniff straight from the bottle, put 2-3 drops on a handkerchief or a tissue to sniff. You can also use an essential oil inhaler which you can keep in your purse or pocket.

People who suffer from palpitations would benefit from having regular massages using any of the essential oils that have calming properties such as chamomile, lavender, rose, neroli or ylang-ylang. The term palpitations is often incorrectly used to describe an over-rapid heartbeat which can be experienced in similar circumstances. This is more correctly called tachycardia but the distinction is minute when it comes to aromatherapy because the same essential oils and administration methods are most helpful. Ylang-ylang is the best oil to use in the case of tachycardia in order to slow the excessively rapid heartbeat.

Prevent Razor Bumps

Author: Dr. Larita

Razor bumps are common for 30 to 40 % of men with coarse or curly hair and especially common for black men. Shaving hair with a blade, can cut the hair at an angle making it sharp. Curly hair then sometimes curls back toward the skin and can puncture the skin and become ingrown. This leads to red bumps and skin irritation, which can be very painful for some men. The technical name for razor bumps is pseudofolliculitis barbae (often abbreviated PFB).


The following steps may reduce your chance of suffering from razor bumps:

  • Make sure to get your hair very wet before shaving, ideally after taking a bath or shower. If you don’t shower first, wet your hair for at least two minutes with warm, soapy water. Wet hair cuts better and easier than dry hair, and is more likely to cut evenly (and not at an angle).
  • Use a good shaving cream to reduce friction and irritation. I suggest a  gel or moisturizing shaving cream for sensitive skin. Really work the shaving cream into your scalp or face  for at least two minutes, and save areas that tend to develop bumps for last when you’re shaving, so that the shaving cream has longer to soften the hair.
  • Shave with the grain, not against it.
  • Don’t go over the same area more than twice.
  • Don’t stretch out your skin while shaving; let is stay neutral and relaxed. Stretching your skin while you shave increases the chance that the hair will ‘snap back’ to below skin level.
  • Replace your blade regularly. Shaving with a dull blade increases the chances of hair tearing unevenly.
  • There are some good inexpensive disposable razors on the market that can be purchased at most discount grocery stores or drug stores. I recommend the Bic Advance III, it has 3 blades and a lotion or gel moisturizing strip. You should not use it any more than 3 times.
  • After shaving apply an astringent or toner like alcohol or witch hazel. To further improve your skin apply an essential oil mixture, like the one listed below:

Lavender – 10 drops
Chamomile – 10 drops
Calendula – 5 drops
Diluted in 4 teaspoons evening primrose oil.

Some people who suffer from razor bumps might prefer using a depilatory (like Nair or Neet) instead of a razor. Depilatories work by dissolving the hair so it can be washed off. The chemicals used in depilatories are strong, and may cause irritation, therefore we strongly discourage their use.


If you’re already suffering from razor bumps, keep the following points in mind:

  • Before anything else, let your hair grow out for a while and give your skin a rest before shaving again (a minimum of three days).
  • Bumps can get infected fairly easily, so tend to them immediately. Using antibacterial essential oils such as lavender or tea tree oil will probably help, especially if there’s a cut.
  • Don’t pick at or squeeze bumps. That will tend to make things worse.

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November 2019