Health

Is Our Wealth and Privilege Making Us Miserable?

Cem 1a

Psychologist Adam Blanch considers why so many Australians are anxious despite being safer, wealthier, more privileged and more educated than ever before. Adam Blanch ProBono “Dear Adam, I am interested in your perspective. I look around and think as a society that we have more than we have ever had, but everyone seems more anxious and more depressed than ever before. What do you think is going on?” – Anon Dear Anon, I have had the privilege of living in ... Read More »

Trump migrant separation policy: Children ‘in cages’ in Texas

Zex 8h

Reporters and Democratic lawmakers have been allowed inside a detention centre that lies at the heart of a growing storm over a… BBC Authorities did not allow photos or videos to be taken inside the centre, but US Customs and Border Protection later released several images. Former First Lady Laura Bush has compared it to the internment camps used for Japanese-Americans during World War Two. A Democratic congressman who visited the site said it was “nothing short of a prison”. ... Read More »

Yemen: Understanding the conflict

Muc 3c

The military conflict now escalating in Yemen threatens the lives of more than 250,000 people in the port city Hodeidah while 8 million more people across Yemen already risk starvation. Kelly McFarland The Conversation The country is also facing the “worst cholera outbreak in modern history.” I am a scholar who has studied Yemen and worked as an Arabian Peninsula foreign affairs analyst for the State Department between 2011 and 2016. Here is what is happening in Yemen, now in ... Read More »

Harvard scientists: Trump environmental policies could result in 80,000 more deaths per decade

Chimneys 1a Thinkstock photo LLLL

A new essay from two Harvard University scientists concluded that the Trump administration’s environmental policies could result in an additional 80,000 deaths per decade. Avery Anapol The Hill The research, from public health economist David Cutler and biostatistician Francesca Dominici, pointed specifically to the health impacts of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) policies on air pollutants and… “This sobering statistic captures only a small fraction of the cumulative public health damages associated with the full range of rollbacks and systemic actions proposed ... Read More »

British boy’s medical cannabis returned

Xil 2b

London: The UK Home Office is returning a severely epileptic boy’s medicinal cannabis oil after confiscating it from his mother at customs. WAtoday PA Charlotte Caldwell tried to bring the medication into Heathrow Airport in a last-ditch effort to treat her 12-year-old son Billy, but it was removed by border officials. After a week of pleading with the Home Office, during which she accused a minister of likely signing the boy’s “death warrant”, the government has relented. Home Secretary Sajid Javid ... Read More »

‘Not equal before the law’: Why regional drug addicts are often sent to jail, not rehab

Ret 4d

A retired judge has backed calls for more drug rehabilitation centres in the bush, warning addicts in regional areas are too often thrown behind bars. Background Briefing – By Bronwyn Adcock ABC John Nicholson SC served as a New South Wales District Court judge for more than a decade and regularly presided over sittings in Dubbo, where drug-related crime is high. When sentencing offenders, Mr Nicholson told Background Briefing there were times he had no choice but to impose a jail ... Read More »

Sleep problems are influenced by our genes – but this doesn’t mean they can’t be fixed

Aep 3c

Some people struggle greatly with sleeplessness, whereas others appear to be able to nod off effortlessly, regardless of the circumstances. Alice M Gregory The Conversation Perhaps the most obvious explanation for differences between us in terms of our sleep is the environmental challenges that we face. An unrelenting stint at work, relationship difficulties or receiving bad news are just some of the many life challenges that can lead to sleepless nights. It’s no surprise that stressful life events are associated ... Read More »

Australia sexual abuse: PM accepts landmark inquiry proposals

Olw 1a

The Australian government has accepted almost all recommendations from a landmark inquiry into child sexual abuse as it prepares to deliver a national apology to victims. BBC The five-year inquiry found tens of thousands of children had suffered abuse in Australian institutions. PM Malcolm Turnbull said that his government would act on 104 of 122 official recommendations. The remaining 18 had not been ruled out, he… He will make the apology on 22 October. “The survivors have told their stories ... Read More »

Government response to child abuse royal commission is positive, but will need to go beyond an apology

Resp 2b

The federal government has announced it will establish a National Office for Child Safety and issue a formal apology as part of its response to the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. Timothy W. Jones The Conversation In addition, every state and territory has committed to join the National Redress Scheme. Australia’s major churches and youth organisations have also joined the scheme. The timing of the announcement meets a commitment of the Council of Australian Governments to ... Read More »

What Is Sadness, and What Is Depression?

Debe 2b

I stood onstage as an audience of over a thousand people applauded and cheered. My hosts placed an award in my hands. I nodded to the crowd, and they all rose to their feet. Hooray for you, the strangers shouted. Hooray! Jennifer Finney Boylan The New York Times Less than a week later, I sat up in bed in my house in Maine. A voice said: “You’re nothing. You’re a joke. They’d never have given you that award if they ... Read More »

When possessions are poor substitutes for people: hoarding disorder and loneliness

Bulu 2b

A decomposed, mummified body of a man was recently found by forensic cleaners in a Sydney apartment. Authors: The Conversation The apartment’s owner is thought to have suffered from hoarding disorder, and police believe the decomposed body had been there for more than ten… We occasionally read stories involving people with hoarding disorder – people whose possessions pose a serious burden. Clutter might prevent them from sitting on their sofa, taking a shower, cooking a meal, or sleeping in their… ... Read More »

The Insatiable and Unknowable Anthony Bourdain

Wels 2b

Anthony Bourdain devoured the world. That’s not hyperbole. It’s not even metaphor. Frank Bruni The New York Times There was no place that he wasn’t curious to explore, no food that he wasn’t determined to try, no cap on his hunger and no ceiling, or so it always seemed, on his joy. In his writing and especially on his TV shows, most recently CNN’s “Parts Unknown,” he exhorted the rest of us to follow his lead and open our eyes ... Read More »

How we talk about Kate Spade could help others survive

Keyt 1a

I was sitting at my desk when a push notification came on my phone about Kate Spade’s suicide, and I felt a rush of vertigo, as if the room had tipped sideways. Gayle Brandeis CNN I had to clutch the arms of my desk chair to steady myself, had to take a few deep breaths. My mother took her own life in 2009, and whenever I hear news of a suicide, it both reopens that grief and sends my heart ... Read More »

Why long-term separation from parents harms kids

Oft 2b

As a society, we often wax eloquent about how important it is to nurture, support and protect our children. David Rosenberg The Conversation The sad reality, however, is that all too often major, life-changing decisions are made without any consideration of their potential lifelong and devastating impact on kids. Case in point: children separated from their parents at borders as new immigration policies are debated. Separation from parents for even short periods can cause anxiety disorders that can last a ... Read More »

The desperate global need for medical diagnostics

Enf 2b

Prince, a three-year-old boy, is brought to the emergency room in Monrovia, Liberia, with fever and a decreased level of consciousness. He is critically ill. He is treated for malaria. Authors The Conversation Time is the only way to tell if this was the right treatment choice — but time may not be on his side. An astute nurse asks a visiting doctor if she can borrow a blood glucose monitor and nails the diagnosis: Type 1 diabetes, requiring urgent ... Read More »

Syrian refugees in America: The forgotten psychological wounds of the stress of migration

Kama 1a

War in Syria and the refugee crisis have been the subject of a heated debate in United States politics, leading to a travel ban and drastic reduction in the number refugees to the U.S. this year. Arash Javanbakht The Conversation We occasionally hear about brutal deaths and starvation of civilians in Syria from the news, as a far concept happening in another world. This is a group of people who may justifiably feel betrayed by the world. But what do ... Read More »