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Most Australian children hide internet use from parents

Seventy percent of Australian children aged between 8 and 17 said their parents did not know about all their internet activities, a new survey released on Monday has revealed.According to the report, conducted by cyber security firm McAfee and published by Fairfax Media, about 70 percent of the 1000 young people surveyed admitted trying to hide their internet usage from their parents.

via Most Australian children hide internet use from parents: study | GlobalPost.

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Smokers With BRCA2 Gene Mutation ‘have increased lung cancer risk’

Source: Honor Whiteman via Medical News Today

It is well known that mutations in the BRCA genes increase the risk of female breast and ovarian cancers. But for the first time, researchers from The Institute of Cancer Research in the UK have discovered a link between smokers with a BRCA2 gene mutation and increased risk of lung cancer.

According to the American Cancer Society, approximately 224,201 Americans will receive a lung cancer diagnosis this year.

It is common knowledge that smoking is the leading risk factor for lung cancer, causing at least 80% of deaths from the disease.

But the researchers of this latest study, led by Richard Houlston, professor of molecular population and genetics at The Institute of Cancer Research (ICR), say past studies have indicated that genetic factors may also increase lung cancer risk.

To investigate further, the research team compared the DNA of 11,348 European individuals who had lung cancer with the DNA of 15,861 Europeans who were free of the disease…Read More>>

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Study Finds Association Between Maternal Exposure to Agricultural Pesticides and Autism

Source: Phyllis Brown via MedicalXpress

Pregnant women who lived in close proximity to fields and farms where chemical pesticides were applied experienced a two-thirds increased risk of having a child with autism spectrum disorder or other developmental delay, a study by researchers with the UC Davis MIND Institute has found. The associations were stronger when the exposures occurred during the second and third trimesters of the women’s pregnancies.

The large, multisite California-based study examined associations between specific classes of pesticides, including organophosphates, pyrethroids and carbamates, applied during the study participants’ pregnancies and later diagnoses of autism and developmental delay in their offspring. It is published online today in Environmental Health Perspectives.

“This study validates the results of earlier research that has reported associations between having a child with autism and prenatal exposure to agricultural chemicals in California,” said lead study author Janie F…Read More>>

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Experimental Evidence of Massive-Scale Emotional Contagion Through Social Networks

Source: Adam Kramer, via PNAS

Emotional states can be transferred to others via emotional contagion, leading people to experience the same emotions without their awareness. Emotional contagion is well established in laboratory experiments, with people transferring positive and negative emotions to others.

Data from a large real-world social network, collected over a 20-y period suggests that longer-lasting moods (e.g., depression, happiness) can be transferred through networks [Fowler JH, Christakis NA (2008) BMJ 337:a2338], although the results are controversial. In an experiment with people who use Facebook, we test whether emotional contagion occurs outside of in-person interaction between individuals by reducing the amount of emotional content in the News Feed.

When positive expressions were reduced, people produced fewer positive posts and more negative posts; when negative expressions were reduced, the opposite pattern occurred. These results indicate that emotions expressed by others on Facebook influence our own emotions, constituting experimental evidence for massive-scale contagion via social networks.

This work also suggests that, in contrast to prevailing assumptions, in-person interaction and nonverbal cues are not strictly necessary for emotional contagion, and that the observation of others’ positive experiences constitutes a positive experience for people…Read More>>

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Some People Would Rather Shock Themselves Than Be Alone With Their Thoughts for 15 Minutes

Posted on by Linda Le

Source: Will Dunham via Business Insider Australia

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – So you say all you want to do is to take a few minutes to sit down and think without anyone or anything bugging you? Maybe that is true. But you might be in the minority.

A U.S. study published on Thursday showed that most volunteers who were asked to spend no more than 15 minutes alone in a room doing nothing but sitting and thinking found the task onerous.

In fact, some of the volunteers, men in particular, in one of the 11 experiments led by University of Virginia researchers preferred to administer mild electrical shocks to themselves rather than sit and do nothing…Read More>>

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40 Years of Glasgow Coma Scale

Posted on by Linda Le

Source: A Lancet Neurology Podcast Interview with Professor Teasdal Credit: Lancet via MedicalXpress

A group of leading brain injury specialists look back on 40 years of the Glasgow Coma Scale and outline the continuing role of the scale in research and clinical practice, in a new Personal View published in The Lancet Neurology.

The Personal View is published on the 40th anniversary of the Glasgow Coma Scale’s introduction in a 1974 Lancet article*. Since this seminal publication, the Glasgow Coma Scale has provided a practical method for bedside assessment of impairment of conscious level, the clinical hallmark of acute brain injury.

The scale was designed to be easy to use in clinical practice in general and specialist units and to replace previous ill-defined and inconsistent methods. 40 years later, the Glasgow Coma Scale has become an integral part of clinical practice and research worldwide.

...read more>>

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Prevention as the Next Frontier for Psychiatry

Posted on by Linda Le

Source: Michael T. Compton, MD, MPH and Ruth Shim, MD, MPH via Psychiatric Times

In considering Edison’s adage, we note an increasing interest in prevention in the field of psychiatry. Medical specialists in, for example, cardiology, oncology, and neurology, detect and evaluate conditions such as hypertension, ductal carcinoma in situ, transient ischemic attacks, and elevated cholesterol, not to treat a symptomatic or disabling medical condition, but to prevent disabling conditions by addressing the earliest manifestations.

In psychiatry, we monitor and treat symptoms once a disorder manifests—but is that enough? Is there a way to intervene earlier—to halt or prevent illness progression?

In this article, we discuss the need for further advancement of prevention science and practice. We also present 2 classifications of preventive interventions; emphasize the importance of risk factors, protective factors, and risk prediction models; analyze the growing evidence base for preventive interventions across the life span; and describe the concept of mental health promotion…Read More>>

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Early Life Stress Could Alter Brain Regions

Source by: Staff Reporter via Nature World News

Children exposed to stress have long-term changes in key brain areas, new study shows.

The study, conducted by researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, early-life stress due to poverty, abuse or neglect can alter brain areas dedicated to learning, memory and emotion. These changes in the brain could lead to future health as well as relationship problems.

Every year, 1.25 million children are abused or neglected in the United States. Related studies have shown that abuse can lead to several genetic changes in children.

“We haven’t really understood why things that happen when you’re 2, 3, 4 years old stay with you and have a lasting impact,” said Seth Pollak, co-leader of the study and UW-Madison professor of psychology…Read More>>

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Teenagers More Anxious and Depressed

Source: Amy Corderey via The Sydney Morning Herald

Teenagers are experiencing more depression and anxiety than they did a decade or more ago, with doctors reporting an increase in the most serious and difficult cases.

A review of 19 studies conducted across 12 countries has found the majority showed a deterioration in the mental health of teenage girls when it came to depressive and anxious symptoms, with some finding between 30 and 50 per cent of teenage girls were experiencing the symptoms.

The research, published in the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, also found an increase in anxiety and depression among teenage boys, although overall rates were lower…Read More>>

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Deaths from Prescribed Painkillers ‘higher than heroin and cocaine combined’

Source: Marie Ellis via Medical News Today 

In the first ever review of existing research into the topic, researchers have uncovered exactly how much deaths due to such drugs – which outnumber deaths from heroin and cocaine combined – have increased.

The researchers, from McGill University in Canada, have published their results in the American Journal of Public Health.

According to the team, the US and Canada rank number 1 and number 2 in per capita opioid consumption, respectively.

And in 2010 in the US alone, prescribed painkillers were involved in over 16,000 deaths…Read More>>

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