Long COVID: what it is, impacts, and treatments

“Long COVID refers to a variety of symptoms affecting different organs reported by people following Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) infection” (Taquet, 2021). “The symptoms of Long Covid include fatigue, dyspnea, cardiac abnormalities, cognitive impairment, sleep disturbances, symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder, muscle pain, concentration problems, and headache” (Crook, 2021). Long Covid can be terribly debilitating and have profound effects on the people it impacts. See…

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The causes of Alzheimer’s disease

“Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive neurologic disorder that causes the brain to shrink (atrophy) and brain cells to die. Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia — a continuous decline in thinking, behavioral and social skills that affects a person’s ability to function independently” (from the Mayo Clinic). Featured article: *Tang, Y., Zhang, D., Gong, X., & Zheng, J. (2022). A mechanistic survey…

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Extreme weather and a changing climate

Is there a connection between extreme weather events (torrential rain, polar cold, heatwaves, extended droughts, hail, hurricanes, tornadoes, and more) and a changing climate? Yes. Are extreme weather events happening more frequently? Yes. Are these extreme weather events having a greater impact–-deaths, economic losses, human migration, loss of plant and animal species and even extinction, worsening human physical and mental health, and more. Yes, again….

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Using Facebook and Instagram: effects on well-being and mental health

Can using Facebook, Instagram, and other social media platforms be a genuine hazard to our well-being and mental health? Are the purported benefits of digital social media outweighed by the risks? What does the research say? Featured articles: *Brailovskaia, J., Margraf, J., Schillack, H., & Köllner, V. (2019). Comparing mental health of Facebook users and Facebook non-users in an inpatient sample in Germany. Journal of…

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The health benefits and risks of cannabis

People have promoted the health benefits of cannabis/marijuana for decades. That has been a factor in the loosening of marijuana use restrictions in the United States in recent years. And yet, restrictions at the Federal and some State levels remain intact. What does research actually say about the benefits and risks of medical cannabis? Is there actual evidence or are the reports largely anecdotal? Featured…

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Microplastics: impacts on the environment and human health

Hundreds of millions of tons of plastics are produced each year. Millions of those tons enter our air, soil, and water as waste. As waste, some of this material–still many millions of tons–breaks down into smaller particles, or microplastics (< 5 mm in size); microplastics come from many sources including the manufacture of industrial products and the physical, chemical, and biological breakdown of larger pieces…

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