Keyword: psychology

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Profession in crisis

Burn-out and heavy drinking in surgeons: Is there a way out?

Burn-out, depression, heavy drinking: Surgeon's seem to be in deep trouble, according to an editorial published in the Journal of ISAKOS (JISAKOS). It is high time for the profession to fix this problem itself before the government steps in, urges leading surgeon Professor Niek van Dijk of the Academic Medical Center in Amsterdam, citing various published studies - and offers solutions on how to…

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Behaviour prediction

The psychology of taking risks

An anxious person will avoid risks whenever possible. This in itself is not exactly a surprise. However, researchers have found a way to visualize this process in the brain - with interesting implications for behaviour prediction. A team of psychologists from the German Friedrich Schiller University Jena, together with partners from Würzburg, Germany and Victoria, Canada they conducted an…

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Hand in hand

Why being left-handed matters for mental health treatment

Being left-handed apparently means a lot more than gripping things differently than most, researchers find. This sheds a new light on mental health treatment, because current therapies for the most common mental health problems could be ineffective or even detrimental to about 50 percent of the population. For more than 40 years, hundreds of studies suggest that each hemisphere of the brain is…

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High-proof posting

Social media usage linked to underage drinking

Social media often features celebrities drinking cocktails, boozy how-to posts, and party pictures. This is the environment American teens are immersed in every day, with 71 percent of teens using more than one social media site, spending an average of nine hours a day using media. Despite the popularity of social media and alcohol-filled posts, little is known about the influence social media…

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Up in smoke

Cannabis: It matters how young you start

What a difference a year or two can make: If you started smoking marijuana at the start of your teens, your risk of having a drug abuse problem by age 28 is 68 per cent, but if you started smoking between 15 and 17 your risk drops to 44 per cent, according to a new study by Université de Montréal researchers. All the more reason, they say, to educate kids early, in primary school, about the…

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Benefits of country life

Kids with pets, rural upbringing become stress-resilient adults

Children raised in a rural environment, surrounded by animals and bacteria-laden dust, grow up to have more stress-resilient immune systems and might be at lower risk of mental illness than pet-free city dwellers, according to new research published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS). The study, co-authored by researchers from the University of Ulm in Germany…

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Aging study

Perceptions of old age change as we age

Does life really begin at 40? Is 50 the new 30? For people in these age groups, the answer appears to be yes. But for young adults in their teens and early 20s, turning 50 equates to hitting old age. A new study of more than a half-million Americans led by a Michigan State University scholar shows just how skewed views of aging can be – particularly among the young. The findings come as people…

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Early alcohol tasting

Just one sip won't hurt your child? Guess again

Parents who allow their young children to occasionally sip and taste alcohol may be contributing to an increased risk for alcohol use and related problems when those kids reach late adolescence, according to a new study by a University at Buffalo psychologist. The findings contradict the common belief that letting kids sip and taste alcoholic drinks is harmless, and might even help to promote…

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Beyond skepticism

Why vaccines are an especially tough sell on conspiracy theorists

People who believe Princess Diana was murdered or that John F. Kennedy’s assassination was an elaborate plot are more likely to think that vaccines are unsafe, despite scientific evidence to the contrary, according to research published by the American Psychological Association. “Vaccinations are one of society’s greatest achievements and one of the main reasons that people live about 30…

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Brain MRI-mining

The birth of psychoradiology

The emerging field of psychoradiology is taking a major step ahead. A new study highlights MRI’s role in identifying people with attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and classifies subtypes of the condition, a leading Chinese researcher explained at the ESMRMB annual meeting.

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Speech analysis

Psychotic or not? Software can tell by listening to your voice

Computer-based analyses of speech transcripts obtained from interviews with at-risk youths were able to predict which youths would later develop psychosis within two years, with an accuracy of up to 83 percent. In two independent cohorts of young people at risk for psychosis, a disturbance in the flow of meaning when speaking, otherwise known as being tangential or going off track, predicted who…

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Mirror neuron activity

This is where your brain makes up its mind about moral dilemmas

It is wartime. You and your fellow refugees are hiding from enemy soldiers, when a baby begins to cry. You cover her mouth to block the sound. If you remove your hand, her crying will draw the attention of the soldiers, who will kill everyone. If you smother the child, you’ll save yourself and the others. If you were in that situation, which was dramatized in the final episode of the ’70s and…

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The psychology of food

Gluten-free diet - hope or hype?

Walk into the local grocery store and you’re likely to find an array of products with the words “gluten-free” splashed across the label. Everything from cereal to frozen pizza to pasta — and even water — is getting the gluten-free treatment. According to a recent survey, 30 percent of Americans said they were cutting down or avoiding gluten altogether. And yet, only four percent of the…

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Psychology

Stress makes it harder for us to sense new dangers

Being under stress diminishes our abilities to predict new dangers that we face, a team of psychology researchers finds. Its work runs counter to the conventional view that stress enhances our ability to detect and adjust to these changing sources of threat. “Stress does not always increase perceptions of danger in the environment, as is often assumed,” explains Candace Raio, a postdoctoral…

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Algorithmic tool

Google screens for depression - is that really a good thing?

With one in five Americans experiencing clinical depression in their lifetime, should Google offer an online screening test for depression? US based clinical psychiatrist Ken Duckworth says providing a screening test to people who are already seeking information online “could raise awareness to improve identification and treatment.”

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Behavioral study

New understanding for autism through eye tracking

New research has uncovered compelling evidence that genetics plays a major role in how children look at the world and whether they have a preference for gazing at people’s eyes and faces or at objects. The discovery by researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis and Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta adds new detail to understanding the causes of autism…

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Schizophrenia

When the internal clock is out of order

Persons suffering from schizophrenia have a different perception of time than healthy individuals, a new study finds. There is far more variation in the way that a time interval is perceived by people with schizophrenic disorders than by those who do not have the condition. Patients with schizophrenia are also less precise when it comes to judging the temporal order of events.

National security

Counterterrorism strategy is having little impact in the NHS

British NHS organisations are obliged by law to report people it fears at risk of becoming terrorists under the Prevent strategy - part of the UK government’s counterterrorism plan aimed at stopping people becoming terrorists. But new data collected by The BMJ has uncovered low levels of referrals to Prevent since the duty took hold, suggesting that it is having little impact in the NHS.

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Perception

Do football fans of rival teams see the same game differently?

When on the 26th of April, FC Bayern München and Borussia Dortmund confront each other, a great many football enthusiasts will watch the semi-final of the DFB (German Football Association) cup together. Experience shows that after such a game, fans will remember it differently - that is, in favor of their own team. At what point does this distortion actually begin?

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Psychological consequences

Cortisol excess hits natural DNA process hard

High concentrations of the stress hormone, Cortisol, in the body affect important DNA processes and increase the risk of long-term psychological consequences. These relationships are evident in a study from the Sahlgrenska Academy on patients with Cushing’s Syndrome, but the findings also open the door for new treatment strategies for other stress-related conditions such as anxiety, depression…

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