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Me Time: Just for women

Health and Wellness

Glowing with benefits

You probably never thought a glowing chunk of salt could benefit your health, but that's just because you've never used a Himalayan Rock Salt Lamp. Kristin Villielm, manager of Mother Earth's Storehouse in Poughkeepsie, says, "They are like natural filters. Salt is a moisture absorber and the lamps can clean things like allergens and cigarette smoke out of the air."

They also emit a warm orange glow. This soothing light can aid in relaxation and decrease stress. Villielm says, "I leave mine on all day. I put on near my computer to absorb those ions and one in my son's room because he really likes the light at night to help him sleep."

Erica, long time employee at Sunflower Natural Foods Market in Woodstock, says, "Not all lamps are created equal. You have to find the right size lamp for the room. Bigger rooms would need bigger lamps." She also suggests getting a lamp that heats using a lightbulb instead of a candle saying, "I wouldn't leave the ones that use candles unattended, but I leave the ones with lightbulbs on all day."

Villielm also suggests checking out the salt cave, Salt and Soul. "People can sit there and be surrounded by crystals and salt," she says. "It's like therapy." Salt and Soul, 2917 Rte. 9W, Saugerties. 845-247-7364.

Before going under the needle

Botox is a simple procedure that can diminish fine lines and wrinkles. Dr. Ira Stier at Arlington Dental says, "Botox gets a bad reputation because people believe the myths. You shouldn't get any numbness or 'frozen face'." Botox injections can prevent wrinkles from deepening as well as reducing the look of already present wrinkles.

The most common side effect is facial bruising. Dr. Stier suggests, "Patients should stop any aspirin regimen about 5 days prior to prevent any bruising." There is no clear time frame on how long Botox results last, but it helps to go more than once. Dr. Stier says, "With repetitive treatments, you will be able to go a longer time in between injections."

It is always important to get as much information as you can and to go to the right doctor. "It definitely pays to go to a licensed professional to get something like this done," suggests Dr. Stier.

Don't ignore your body

When it comes to your health, Me Time is essential. Scheduling mammograms is one of the best ways to detect cancer early. Mary Ann Pumilia, Marketing Director at Hudson Valley Imaging, suggests switching to 3D mammograms. She says, "With 3D mammography, there is a 40 percent increase in catching cancers at their earliest. That is the ultimate goal." Pumilia also adds, "3D mammography is a really good choice because it provides a much fuller breast evaluation."

Yearly exams are recommended to women over the age of 55 or if they have a family history of breast cancer.

Self-exams once a month are necessary in detecting cancer. Place a pillow under one shoulder and raise your arm; use your opposite hand to feel in small circular motions, looking for any changes. Be sure to do this to both breasts.

READ MORE: Learn more about self-exams

Learning how to properly perform self-exams is key in early detection. You are the best judge of your own body. If something doesn't feel right, make an appointment to see your doctor and schedule a mammogram.

Ditch the phone, catch some Z's
If you're having trouble sleeping, the phone in your hand could be the problem. Using your smartphone at night could be to blame for restless nights and sluggish mornings. The blue and white light emitted by a smartphone screen wakes the brain up. This bright screen prevents your brain from releasing melatonin, the hormone that helps your body fall asleep and stay asleep. Make a point to disconnect an hour before bedtime.

Try ending your night with a relaxing activity that doesn't involve a screen. Read a book or a magazine, chat with your partner, or knit. These activities can calm the mind and relax the body.

Berry benefits

Summer is the perfect time to fill up on sweet, ripe berries. Not only are they delicious, but they are packed with health benefits. These colorful fruits are full of memory boosting vitamins, cancer preventing antioxidants, and filling fiber. Berries are versatile, and can be molded to satisfy different tastes. They can be eaten fresh, cooked into pies, or even blasted into a morning smoothie.

Picking your own berries can be a great way to spend a summer afternoon. Lawrence Farms in Orange County has a variety of berries to choose from all summer long. Strawberries and currants are ready in July while raspberries don't hit their peak until August.

READ MORE: Find a u-pick farm near you!