Inspirational Woman Of Day: The inspirational teacher who braved ice and fire as she tackled a different physical challenge every month to honour her father’s memory

Inspirational Woman Of Day: The inspirational teacher who braved ice and fire as she tackled a different physical challenge every month to honour her father’s memory

Women’s News: Female Editors-In-Chief Make $15,000 Less Than Male Counterparts: Folio Survey

Women’s News: Female Editors-In-Chief Make $15,000 Less Than Male Counterparts: Folio Survey

Girl’s Health: IUDs, Implants Urged For Teen Girls’ Birth Control

Girl’s Health: IUDs, Implants Urged For Teen Girls’ Birth Control

A Message From The Creator

A Message From The Creator

A Message From The Creator

Girl’s Health: IUDs, Implants Urged For Teen Girls’ Birth Control


CHICAGO — Teenage girls may prefer the pill, the patch or even wishful thinking, but their doctors should be recommending IUDs or hormonal implants – long-lasting and more effective birth control that you don’t have to remember to use every time, the nation’s leading gynecologists group said Thursday.

The IUD and implants are safe and nearly 100 percent effective at preventing pregnancy, and should be “first-line recommendations,” the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists said in updating its guidance for teens.

Both types of contraception are more invasive than the pill, requiring a doctor to put them in place. That, and cost, are probably why the pill is still the most popular form of contraception in the U.S.

But birth control pills often must be taken at the very same time every day to be most potent. And forgetting to take even one can lead to pregnancy, which is why the pill is sometimes only 91 percent effective.

An IUD, or intrauterine device, is a small, T-shaped piece of plastic inserted in the uterus that can prevent pregnancy for up to 10 years. An implant is a matchstick-size plastic rod that releases hormones. It is placed under the skin of the upper arm and usually lasts three years.

The new guidelines don’t tell teens not to use other methods, but “if your goal is to prevent a pregnancy, then using an implant or an IUD would be the best way to do this,” said Dr. Tina Raine-Bennett, head of the committee that wrote the recommendations.

The organization’s previous guidelines, issued in 2007, also encouraged the use of IUDs and implants among teenagers. The new guidelines go further in saying physicians should discuss the two types of birth control with sexually active teens at every doctor visit.

The gynecologists group said condoms should still be used at all times because no other birth control method protects against AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases.

While it may sound surprising that such invasive contraceptives are being endorsed for teenagers, 43 percent of girls ages 15 to 19 have had sex, a government surveyfound. Most are using some kind of effective birth control, but only about 5 percent use the long-lasting devices, the gynecologists group said.

In 21 states, all teenagers can get contraceptives without parental permission, according to the Guttmacher Institute, which tracks laws affecting women’s health. A few other states allow it under certain circumstances.

The IUD and implant cost hundreds of dollars. The new health reform law requires health insurance plans to cover birth control without co-payments. Also, some publicly funded health clinics offer birth control free or at a reduced cost.

The American Academy of Pediatrics has been more cautious and has not endorsed specific methods of birth control, but is updating its guidance. Some pediatricians have been reluctant to recommend IUDs for teens, partly because of concerns over infection risks; an older model was blamed for infertility.

Dr. Paula Braverman, a University of Cincinnati physician involved in updating the academy’s position, said the gynecologists’ advice does a good job of clarifying misconceptions about IUDs and implants.

An IUD called the Dalkon Shield that was sold in the 1970s was linked to dangerous and sometimes deadly infections. Newer IUDs have been found to be safe, and the gynecologists group said the risk of pelvic infections increases only slightly during the first three weeks after insertion.

The hormonal implant has been updated, too. The newest kind uses just one thin rod; an older type no longer sold in the U.S. used six rods that sometimes didn’t stay in place. IUDs and implants can be removed at any time with no lasting effect on fertility, the gynecologists group said.

“The ones on the market today are extremely safe,” said Dr. Mary Fournier, an adolescent-medicine specialist at Chicago’s Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital, who praised the new recommendations. “That is what everybody should be telling their patients.”

She said she already recommends IUDs for her patients and is being trained in how to insert birth control implants.

Raine-Bennett, research director for women’s health at Kaiser Permanente in Oakland, Calif., said she gets mixed reactions from her patients about both methods.

“Some of them say, `Great! Something that I don’t have to think about.’ Others are, like, `Hmmm, something in my body?’ It really varies,” she said.

Doctors need to be sensitive to that and provide detailed information to dispel any myths and allow teens to make informed decisions, Raine-Bennett said.

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Women’s News: Female Editors-In-Chief Make $15,000 Less Than Male Counterparts: Folio Survey

Here’s some discouraging news about the gender gap in media. Female editors-in-chief make $15,000 less on average than their male counterparts, according to Folio magazine’s annual survey.

The survey, which included 513 editors, found that men with the job of editor-in-chief or editorial director earned an average annual salary of $100,800. Women with the same titles got $85,100.

The pay gap was even wider at the executive editor level. Male executive editors earned an average of $84,200 while their female counterparts were paid an average of $65,700. Click over to Folio, which also looked at salaries by location and education, for the full results.


Inspirational Woman Of Day: The inspirational teacher who braved ice and fire as she tackled a different physical challenge every month to honour her father’s memory

Abseiling down a power station, jumping over fire and swimming through ice.

There are few of us who can say we have accomplished any of these feats, but not only has 24-year-old Clarissa Goodwin managed every one, and many more, she did it all in a year, and while juggling intensive teacher training.

Clarissa, from South-West London, embarked on the most extreme 12 months of her life in June 2011.

She tackled a different physical challenge every month to raise money for charity in memory of her late father Anthony ‘Norvon’ Goodwin, a managing director of a steel foundry who passed away aged 54 after a stroke in 2007, leaving his family devastated.

‘I was always a bit of a daddy’s girl,’ says Clarissa.

‘It was Dad who turned my brother and me into sports nuts. He said there was no better way to learn discipline or make friends.

‘He inspired me to become a heptathlete in my teens. I later gave it up for hockey and netball, but again, it was Dad egging me on from the sidelines.’

It paid off, as Clarissa plays for the England senior women’s hockey squad. ‘I wanted to do something in his memory that would’ve made him proud. I knew Dad would have approved and hopefully would have thought I was mad, in a good way, for trying any of the challenges, let alone 12 in a year!’

So how hellish was it? After all, she cycled 100k through London; ran 13 miles in San Francisco; stood on a giant surf board (called a paddleboard) and paddled across a reservoir; ran, cycled and abseiled in the London Urban Rat Race Adventure.

She ran through fire, climbed 12ft walls, waded through ice and swam across freezing lakes in The London Spartan Sprint; abseiled 100ft down Battersea power station; ran around Richmond Park dressed as Santa Claus; sprinted five miles around the Olympic Park; swam 200 lengths of a pool in a swimathon; marched, cycled, ran and orienteered her way around the capital in a Soldier Challenge; spent eight hours competing in a duathlon and lastly climbed the three highest peaks in Yorkshire in under 12 hours.

Clarissa found herself getting up at 5am, planning her lessons for the day, then doing an intense 20-minute workout before arriving at school at 7am. After school she would swim for two hours or run 10k.

'It was unbelievable': Clarissa (middle) takes part in the National Lottery Olympic Park Run‘It was unbelievable’: Clarissa (middle) takes part in the National Lottery Olympic Park Run

Clarissa says: ‘I went through a tough patch when I lost all perspective. I neglected to see friends and family. I was permanently tired, my teaching suffered and I wasn’t eating properly because I didn’t have time. It stopped being fun.’

Clarissa lives with her boyfriend, Robert Shilling, 26, who also plays hockey professionally. ‘Poor Robert had to put up with a lot. We hardly saw each other and it put a huge strain on things.’

There were other hurdles, too. In February, Clarissa underwent painful wrist surgery to correct an old injury. ‘I had to wear a sling for a month and postpone two challenges. It was gutting. I felt I was letting people down. I changed a few challenges to ones which wouldn’t affect my wrist and I put all my efforts into getting better.’

Luckily there were moments that made up for the pain. In March, Clarissa took part in the National Lottery Olympic Park Run. Despite having food poisoning, she finished the five-mile run in 26 minutes.

‘It was unbelievable. They played Chariots Of Fire and Team GB Olympic athletes cheered us on along the final 100 meters.’

Last October she took part in The London Spartan Sprint. Competitors crawled beneath barbed wire, waded through ice, lifted logs and threw spears.

Inspirational women of the year

Clarissa says: ‘I’ve never felt pain like it. It left me walking like a penguin for days. But it was also hilarious. It gave me the most immense sense of achievement.’

It’s Clarissa’s attitude that is most impressive. She is a tireless campaigner for women’s sport.

She says: ‘I’ve been inundated with letters from people saying they didn’t realise women could get involved with so many fabulous sports. I’ve got a friend that’s taken up paddle-boarding and another who has decided to run half marathons. That was the aim — to inspire in others the love of sport which Dad inspired in me.’

To date, Clarissa has raised more than £11,000 for The Guide Dogs For The Blind Association, a charity close to her father’s heart after an industrial accident left him blind in one eye aged 31.

And she’s far from finished. ‘I’d like to do something else next year, maybe run a marathon across the desert. I’ll keep it to the one challenge though,’ she laughs.

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To nominate your inspirational woman, simply fill out the form below and send it in, or email your entry to by October 10, 2012.

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