Archive for the ‘Alzheimer’s’ Category

A Growing Movement Of ‘Death Doulas’ Is Rethinking How We Die

Sunday, July 30th, 2017

“All I can tell you is that from where I have sat there has been a calmness and a sense that I want to be nowhere else but by that person’s side,” Levine said in an interview with HuffPost.

Levine is part of a growing movement of nurses, social workers and volunteers who are pushing for greater compassion and companionship for people who are dying. Borrowing language from the birthing world, they’re called death doulas, end-of-life doulas, death midwives and palliative care doulas.

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Martin Rees: We Are Living Through A Political And Scientific Transformation

Friday, March 10th, 2017

Out of all great transformations we are going through, from climate change to artificial intelligence to gene editing, what are the most consequential we are about to witness?

Martin Rees: It depends on what time scale we are thinking about. In the next 10 or 20 years, I would say it’s the rapid development in biotechnology. We are already seeing that it’s becoming easier to modify the genome, and we heard about experiments on the influenza virus to make it more virulent and transmissible. These techniques are developing very fast and have huge potential benefits but unfortunately also downsides.

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5 Distressing Realities About The State Of Mental Health In America

Friday, November 4th, 2016

One in five American adults will experience a mental health disorder in a given year. That makes it highly likely many of us know someone who is dealing with a psychological condition. But when it comes to understanding these disorders, we often fall flat.

In honor of World Mental Health Day, we rounded up some of the most important mental health discoveries made this year. If anything, they’re proof that continued education and advocacy is critical when it comes to making life easier for those diagnosed:

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Different Diseases Have Different Smells

Tuesday, September 13th, 2016

Certain ailments give off signature scents, whether it’s the baked-bread odor of typhoid or the meaty smell of yellow fever. When it’s progressed far enough, melanoma is said to give off the smell of gasoline, whereas trimethylaminuria (a disorder in which the body can’t break down the compound trimethylamine) causes the unfortunate symptom of body odor that’s reminiscent of rotten fish. Even mental disorders can release a specific smell: schizophrenia’s effect on the body’s metabolism results in a sweet, fruity odor in the sweat.

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Why Silence Is So Good For Your Brain

Friday, April 22nd, 2016

We live in a loud and distracting world, where silence is increasingly difficult to come by — and that may be negatively affecting our health.

In fact, a 2011 World Health Organization report called noise pollution a “modern plague,” concluding that “there is overwhelming evidence that exposure to environmental noise has adverse effects on the health of the population.”

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5 Types Of Meditation That Don’t Require Sitting Still

Monday, April 4th, 2016

Contrary to popular belief, meditation doesn’t always mean sitting in lotus pose with your eyes closed. In fact, most people are unaware that you can practice meditation virtually anywhere — sitting still is not a requirement.

The true beauty of meditation lies in the fact that you can make your practice perfectly suited to your personal needs. The benefits are also undeniable: Studies show the practice can prevent disease and reduce inflammation, be an effective form of treating depression and increase happiness levels. It is even thought to prevent signs of aging in the brain.

Everyone can take advantage of meditation’s perks, regardless of whether or not they want to sit in one place. Below are five types of meditation you can do on the move:

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The 5 Big Differences Between Being 45 And 65

Wednesday, February 10th, 2016

Priorities shift in surprising ways.

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From Greg O’Brien’s latest book, “On Pluto: Inside the Mind of Alzheimer’s”

Saturday, January 23rd, 2016

At a recent Cure Alzheimer’s Fund symposium at the Harvard Club of Boston, Tanzi noted that without a cure, more than 100 million people worldwide are expected to have Alzheimer’s in the next 25 years, which will bankrupt health care systems. Alzheimer’s, he said, is not your grandfather’s disease. The buildup of amyloid plaques, neurofibrillary tangles and inflammation–telltale signs of Alzheimer’s–can begin when one is in their 30s. It’s a slow progression leading to the 10 warning signs:

• Memory loss that disrupts daily life
• Challenges in planning or solving problems
• Difficulty completing familiar tasks at home, at work or at leisure
• Confusion with time or place
• Difficulty understanding visual images and spatial relationships
• Problems with words in speaking or writing
• Misplacing items and losing the ability to retrace steps
• Decreased or poor judgment
• Withdrawal from work or social activities
• Changes in mood and personality, such as chronic depression, anxiety and fearfulness

Alzheimer’s, Tanzi said, is not just the end stage, but a journey to the grave, a slow death by a thousand cuts. Chief risk factors, he notes, include: family history, head injury, Alzheimer’s marker genes, gender, age, and stroke/emotional trauma. I’m hitting for the cycle on risk factor with a generational family history of the disease, two traumatic head injuries, clinical depression, and the marker gene APOE-4.

“You’re not getting out of this,” my doctors tell me.

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2015 Changed The Way We Address Mental Illness On TV

Saturday, January 16th, 2016

Dr. Paul Puri, a psychiatrist and TV writer, also joined the conversation explaining how mental health is getting more respect on TV. He explained:

“We’ve really seen the movement from peripheral, secondary or supporting characters to the primary characters and the leads displaying not just more subtitles to it but really the experience of what it’s like to be going through different forms of mental illness — or what the writers think mental illness is or want to represent about it.”

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Just One Night Of Bad Sleep Can Alter Your Genes

Sunday, July 26th, 2015

Now, a new small study suggests that all it takes is one night of sleep loss to alter our biological clock genes — and this impact may hold clues to the complex link between sleep and certain diseases. After all, lack of sleep has been linked to negative effects on our metabolism and even an increased risk of obesity and diabetes.

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Thomas Ramey Watson is an affiliate faculty member of Regis University's College of Professional Studies. He has served as an Episcopal chaplain (lay), trained as a psychotherapist, done postdoctoral work at Cambridge University, and was named a Research Fellow at Yale University.

In addition to his scholarly writings, he is a published author of poetry and fiction.

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