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Update: Four tips to practice good mental hygiene during the coronavirus outbreak

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Time for a new edi­tion of Sharp­Brains’ e‑newsletter, fea­tur­ing this time 14 time­ly news and resources for men­tal health and brain health inno­va­tion.

First of all, let’s remain safe, healthy, and cen­tered dur­ing the cur­rent health cri­sis by fol­low­ing these tips pro­vid­ed by the Greater Good Sci­ence Cen­ter at UC Berke­ley:

1. Stay calm and focused
2. Pay atten­tion to those doing the right thing
3. Show grat­i­tude
4. Remem­ber our com­mon bonds

1) “Of course, all of these guide­lines don’t sup­plant the impor­tance of prac­tic­ing good hygiene. We need to con­tin­ue to fre­quent­ly wash our hands and avoid touch­ing our faces, so that we can lessen the chance of infect­ing our­selves and oth­ers. But we also should remem­ber our men­tal hygiene—staying calm our­selves, being grate­ful espe­cial­ly to those doing the right thing, and remem­ber­ing our com­mon human­i­ty. In this way, we can help to make the world safer for all of us.” Four tips to prac­tice good men­tal hygiene dur­ing the coro­n­avirus out­break

2) “Before any­thing else, prepa­ra­tion is the key to suc­cess.”
–Alexan­der Gra­ham Bell

Thank­ful­ly, neu­rotech pio­neer Tan Le out­lines sev­er­al areas where we can take a prac­ti­cal approach to address changes already under­way and lay the ground­work for a more seam­less tran­si­tion to a new era. Fast For­ward to 2040: How to pre­pare for the new era in brain enhance­ment that will change the way we think, work, and heal

3) Here’s a beau­ti­ful way to explore the anato­my of brain regions and brain func­tions. The Vir­tu­al Brain Web Atlas: How the Mind emerges from the Brain

4) “Before stu­dents decide to slip in their ear­buds, though, they should care­ful­ly con­sid­er both their musi­cal selec­tion and the nature of the task” … because “We found that (1) music gen­er­al­ly impaired com­plex task per­for­mance, (2) com­plex music facil­i­tat­ed sim­ple task per­for­mance, and (3) pref­er­ence for exter­nal stim­u­la­tion mod­er­at­ed these effects. There­fore, the data sug­gest that music’s effects on task per­for­mance depend on the music, the task, and the per­former” Does music facil­i­tate or impair cog­ni­tive task per­for­mance? It depends…

5) Because learn­ing can­not, must not, ever stop: Meet the Top 50 final­ists for the Glob­al Teacher Prize 2020

6) Any plans for the sum­mer? Four ways hik­ing pro­motes cog­ni­tive and emo­tion­al health

7) Har­ness­ing tech to pro­mote social con­nect­ed­ness: Every Wednes­day start­ing today we can join scientist/ entre­pre­neur Rana el Kaliou­by online to dis­cuss her new book! Vir­tu­al book tour to explore the fron­tier of Emo­tion­al Intel­li­gence and Tech­nol­o­gy

8) On-field or off-field, train­ing goes on: Sports teams find cre­ative ways to cross-train the brain off-field

9) “You Can’t Man­age What You Can’t Mea­sure” has­n’t yet reached pub­lic health … but it will. To screen, or not to screen (for demen­tia), that is still the ques­tion

10) Sum­ma­riz­ing a recent study, “children’s sleep should be eval­u­at­ed as part of an ADHD eval­u­a­tion as sleep dif­fi­cul­ties are more com­mon … address­ing sleep issues in chil­dren with ADHD is a fea­si­ble and rel­a­tive­ly low-cost approach that can be a valu­able treat­ment com­po­nent for many chil­dren.” Study: A brief sleep inter­ven­tion can bring mea­sur­able and sus­tained ben­e­fits to chil­dren with ADHD

11) Some may and will dis­agree, but net net this offers a major oppor­tu­ni­ty to har­ness smart­phone use data for good: Ver­i­ly and LivaNo­va accel­er­ate efforts to detect and treat depres­sion

12) Poten­tial big news in the neu­ro­mod­u­la­tion mar­ket; coro­n­avirus or not we all have awe­some brains and will expe­ri­ence brain/ men­tal health needs in the future: Medtron­ic might acquire LivaNova’s neu­ro­mod­u­la­tion busi­ness

13) What if “An employ­er wants to reduce the risk of on-the-job dis­abil­i­ty, so it screens appli­cants for neu­ro­log­i­cal mark­ers that they are pre­dis­posed to chron­ic pain and depres­sion…” Let’s antic­i­pate the poten­tial mis­use of neu­ro­log­i­cal data to min­i­mize the risks–and max­i­mize the ben­e­fits

14) The first brain teaser/ test here is espe­cial­ly rel­e­vant these days … Sev­en fun brain teasers to hon­or our unique Brains and Minds dur­ing Brain Aware­ness Week 2020

 

Have a good and healthy Spring,

The Sharp­Brains Team

Trend: Rethinking (and treating) chronic pain as a brain disease

Can stim­u­lat­ing the brain treat chron­ic pain? (Sci­ence Dai­ly):

We’ve pub­lished numer­ous brain stim­u­la­tion papers over sev­er­al years, and we always learn some­thing impor­tant,” said senior author Flavio Frohlich, PhD, direc­tor of the Car­oli­na Cen­ter for Neu­rostim­u­la­tion and asso­ciate pro­fes­sor of psy­chi­a­try. “But this is the first time we’ve stud­ied chron­ic pain, and this is the only time all three ele­ments of a study lined up per­fect­ly. We suc­cess­ful­ly tar­get­ed a spe­cif­ic brain region, we enhanced or restored that region’s activ­i­ty, and we cor­re­lat­ed that enhance­ment with a sig­nif­i­cant decrease in symp­toms” Keep on read­ing

Three Ways to Bring Mindfulness Into Therapy

Meditation

Many ther­a­pists have come to regard cul­ti­vat­ing moment-to-moment aware­ness as a cura­tive mech­a­nism that tran­scends diag­no­sis, address­es under­ly­ing caus­es of suf­fer­ing, and serves as an active ingre­di­ent in most effec­tive psy­chother­a­pies. The clin­i­cal val­ue of Read the rest of this entry »

Research on Applied Neuroplasticity: Rewiring the Brain to Ease Pain

Rewiring the Brain to Ease Pain (Wall Street Jour­nal):-

How you think about pain can have a major impact on how it feels. That’s the intrigu­ing con­clu­sion neu­ro­sci­en­tists are reach­ing as scan­ning tech­nolo­gies let them see how the brain process­es pain. That’s also the prin­ci­ple behind many mind-body approach­es to chron­ic pain that are prov­ing sur­pris­ing­ly effec­tive in clin­i­cal tri­als. Some are as old as med­i­ta­tion, hyp­no­sis and tai chi, while oth­ers are far more high tech.”

Link to Study Towards a phys­i­ol­o­gy-based mea­sure of pain (PloS One): Read the rest of this entry »

Grand Rounds: 22 Health and Medicine Questions and Answers

Wel­come to Grand Rounds, the week­ly col­lec­tion of best health and med­ical blog posts. This week we invite you to enjoy a broad range of insights, tips, and first-hand sto­ries, pre­sent­ed as a Q&A con­ver­sa­tion with blog­gers will­ing to answer, below, a total of 22 good ques­tions.

On Health and Med­i­cine

  1. What can one-word pre­scrip­tions deliv­er
  2. How does food pro­cess­ing change food´s nutri­tion­al val­ue
  3. Can diet Increas­es Risk of ADHD
  4. Is alco­holism an ill­ness
  5. What´s bet­ter: steady dete­ri­o­ra­tion over 10 years, or sym­p­­tom-free life for 9 years fol­lowed by rapid dete­ri­o­ra­tion in year 10

On Patient Life

  1. As we talk about wellness…what about devel­op­ing self-com­pas­sion
  2. Can patients with chron­ic pain still live a full life
  3. What is the patient-doc­tor eti­quette for using Face­book and Twit­ter
  4. Should patients in an ide­al world con­tract direct­ly with their doc­tors
  5. What are patient advo­cates focus­ing on these days

On Health Care pro­fes­sion­als Read the rest of this entry »

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As seen in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, BBC News, CNN, Reuters,  SharpBrains is an independent market research firm tracking how brain science can improve our health and our lives.

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