Depression Now World’s Most Widespread Illness

“Depression Is Now the World’s Most Widespread Illness”
By Laura Entis as published online in Fortune.com, Mar 30, 2017

This article came out earlier this spring and gave some hard numbers on just how pervasive and destructive depression can be. Here are some of the key statistics.

  • The World Health Organization (WHO) estimated that 322 million people were living with depression in 2015. That makes it the number one cause of ill health and disability worldwide.
  • The majority of people suffering from depression are not receiving adequate care.
  • Even in high income countries it is estimated that half of people suffering from depression did not receive treatment.
  • The cost related to depression add up to $1 trillion annually by WHO estimates.

 

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Poor Sleep May Make You Prone to Colds

Poor Sleep May Make You Prone to Colds
BBC Health online

Continuing on the last post’s theme of sleep and things-that-were-obvious-but-now-verified-by-science, I’m posting this article about the effect of inadequate sleep on the immune system. Inadequate sleep can be caused by many things, including poor impulse control, poor time management, depression, anxiety, and physical conditions such as sleep apnea.

The lead researcher, Dr Aric Prather, is quoted saying “Short sleep was more important than any other factor in predicting subjects’ likelihood of catching cold. It didn’t matter how old people were, their stress levels, their race, education or income. It didn’t matter if they were a smoker. With all those things taken into account, statistically sleep still carried the day.”

Inadequate sleep also makes us more vulnerable to emotions such as anger, anxiety, and sadness and impairs our concentration. Click here to read more.

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Why drinking coffee can give you jet lag – and help you get over it

Why Drinking Coffee Can Give You Jet Lag – and Help You Get Over It
Published by The Guardian

Many people with ADHD have trouble getting to bed on time. This can happen for a variety of reasons including difficulty disengaging from something enjoyable (video games, “binge watching” TV shows and movies, reading, etc.), a lack of awareness of the passage of time, a coexisting condition such as “Delayed Sleep Phase Disorder,” to name a few. But people will often self-medicate with caffeine, compounding the above problems.

While it’s obvious that caffeine before bed isn’t a good idea, a recent study helps us understand exactly why that is. The article explains, “Caffeine resets the clock by delaying a rise in the level of melatonin, the body’s chief sleep hormone. Fluctuating levels of melatonin help determine the natural time to go to sleep and wake up.”

In addition to issues like oversleeping the next day or getting inadequate sleep, “Disruption of the body clock, for instance by working shifts or jet lag, is known to increase the risk of various cancers, heart disease, Type 2 diabetes and neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s.”

Click here to read more.

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How do I deal with seasonal affective disorder?

“How do I … deal with seasonal affective disorder?”
By Phil Maynard
From TheGuardian.com

Given the upcoming end of daylight savings time this Sunday in the United States, I thought this article would be useful and timely. The article mentions a few tips for coping and also links to another article (http://www.theguardian.com/society/2005/nov/17/health.lifeandhealth3) that provides a more complete list of treatment options, including CBT.

As with any disorder, the earlier you intervene, the better off you will be. The symptoms can affect your motivation so as they become more severe it becomes progressively more difficult to apply many of the treatment recommendations.

Adults with ADHD also tend to have difficulty maintaining a regular sleep schedule, so when the clock “falls back” Sunday, it’s extra important to use good sleep hygiene to stay on track.

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Fast-Paced Cartoons May Hurt Kids’ Attention, Memory

Fast-Paced Cartoons May Hurt Kids’ Attention, Memory
By Kathleen Doheny
WebMD Health News

From the article:

“The fast-paced shows may have a negative impact, Lillard says, because of the rapid presentation of the events. These engage the senses rather than the brain areas engaged in memory, controlling inhibition, and problem solving, she says.
When a child sees a cartoon character that jumps from one activity to another, much faster than in real life, she says, ‘they become neurologically exhausted and it inhibits the ability to concentrate.'”

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