Category : Health

Health

Ten things to think about when considering medical tourism

Medical tourism is on the rise, with estimates suggesting the industry is growing by 15-25% each year, but it is something that some people still have reservations about. Whether you have already decided to seek treatment abroad, or it is something you are considering here’s a list of things to think about before you opt to travel abroad for medical treatment.

1 There are international groups to review medical facilities abroad and ensure they are up to expected standards – Organisations such as JCI, ISQua, and Temos are particularly relevant to people considering treatment abroad (these accrediting bodies evaluate clinics and hospitals to a set of international standards).  At Medigo, we clearly list the accreditations that a clinic or hospital has earned. Many countries also have national or regional accreditations, too. This doesn’t mean they are of a lower quality, just that they aren’t recognized internationally. Reliable providers will also be nationally certified by their relevant medical organisations.

2 Consider recovery time Certain procedures require more recovery time than others, particularly if you are flying back home, so you need to consider how long you are happy to be away for.  Your doctor should explain how much recovery time is required for your procedure. Also, be sure to allow yourself enough time in the unlikely case that a complication extends your stay abroad.

3 Is there someone who can accompany you? – While you can certainly make the trip alone if you prefer to, it’s almost always a good idea to have somebody accompanying you for support. Clinics often offer accommodation deals for travel partners – it’s good to be aware of these so you can factor in the overall cost for both you and anyone else travelling with you. We’ve seen many people opting to travel with a partner for treatment, with both parties undergoing dental or cosmetic procedures.

4 Will there be a language barrier? – Procedures are generally more expensive in native English-speaking countries, so you need to consider whether language barriers may present a problem if you seek treatment at a clinic elsewhere. Almost every clinic abroad that offers treatments to medical tourists will speak English though.

5 Research clinics extensively – Make sure you choose a clinic that has a good reputation for your particular procedure, and one that is accredited – nationally or internationally. Read up on patient reviews. Obviously, these are not always accurate or vetted on various sites but, for reputable companies, they will be.

6 What will be the overall cost? – For necessary surgeries, the NHS can often cover the cost of the treatment itself, and the stay in hospital for recovery, but not the travel. For cosmetic treatments, you will have to pay the full price out-of-pocket. It’s important to make sure that what is covered in your treatment is all clearly outlined before you travel – this way you can prepare a budget for the overall treatment cost.

7 Make the treatment your number one priority – It can be tempting to choose a clinic based on its location, but it’s important that you first narrow down your options according to where is the best place for the treatment before choosing a clinic. Different countries are renowned for their expertise in particular medical specialties, so it’s advisable to go wherever is best equipped to carry out the treatment you need.

8 Does your travel insurance cover your stay? – Medical travel insurance is different to regular travel insurance – the latter will not cover you should any complications arise causing you to need additional care or extra recovery time. Make sure to do your research, and purchase a policy that will fully cover you in any eventuality.

9 Can you claim some, or all, of the costs back from the NHS? – Consult with your GP before seeking medical treatment abroad, and follow the correct protocol to ensure your costs can be claimed back. Only medically necessary treatments can be claimed back, not elective procedures, but you will need to be assessed by your GP who can verify whether or not they believe the surgery to be mandatory. For example, bariatric surgery can be covered by the NHS, but only if it is considered medically necessary.

10 There are different options for treatment within Europe – Entitlement to free, or reduced cost, medical care within Europe, can vary depending on the route you take. If you choose the S2 route, the NHS will cover the cost of your treatment, but you may be required to contribute to health care costs. Through the EU directive, you will need to pay costs upfront and then apply for reimbursement through the NHS post-treatment. The NHS won’t, however, fund treatment that is obtained outside of the EU.

 

Medical tourism, also known as medical travel, is the practice of individual people leaving their country of residence to seek medical care in another country to save on costs, to find better-quality care, or to avoid the long wait times for treatment at home. In 2015, research by MEDIGO found that nearly 9 million people in the UK would consider medical treatment abroad, and the medical tourism market is growing rapidly. If you are considering treatment outside of the UK, discuss your plans with your GP or dentist, who can advise on the best options for you. For more info, visit Medigo.

 

Ugur Samut is CEO of Medigo.

 

http://dailygenius.com/eat-healthily-travel/

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Health

Seven UNESCO sites you need to visit before they become tourist traps

Following the July 2017 addition of the Lake District in the UK, the city of Ahmedabad in India, the sacred island of Okinoshima in Japan and others to the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites, it is inevitable that tourists will flock to the new destinations. Interestingly, a survey by travel search platform HolidayPirates , found that 59% of their users were more likely to travel to a destination if it was a UNESCO Heritage Sites.

Niamh Walsh, Senior Editor at HolidayPirates shares the ‘lesser known’ UNESCO sites to travel to in 2017, before they become tourist traps.

Mistaken Point, Canada
Not only is Mistaken Point breathtakingly beautiful, but the cliffs were also formed during the Ediacaran Period (580 million years ago) making the location the richest source of large fossils. While the fossils tell us a lot about how the world developed into what we know it as today, the story behind the naming of Mistaken Point is equally as interesting. Sailors named the cliffs after many confused them for Cape Race in the foggy weather, leading to fatalities as the ships turned North and ran into treacherous rocks.

Wadi Al-Hitan, Egypt
Egypt is notorious for the impressive and mysterious pyramids of Giza, but if you would rather travel off the beaten track, then make sure to go to Wadi Al-Hitan, which is also known as Whale Alley. The fossils found in this area are over 50 million years old and show the earliest whales – land animals that moved to the sea.

Rhaetian Railway, Italy and Switzerland
A lesser known, but absolutely magnificent and picturesque railway, located in the heart of the Alps. The Rhaetian Railway starts in Tirano, Italy, and finishes in Chur, Switzerland, taking passengers through the spectacular Alpine scenery and some of the world’s most beautiful landscapes. However, it isn’t just the views of the mountains that are worth admiring, as the railway is also a wonderful example of engineering, spanning 42 tunnels and 144 viaducts and bridges, a feat, considering the mountainous terrain.

Crespi d’Adda, Italy
An alternative to popular Italian destinations like Rome and Venice, Crespi d’Adda is a must if you enjoy 20th century history and beautifully preserved Italian towns. Crespi d’Adda started as a small community which thrived around a textile company, which wasn’t uncommon for Italy in the late 19th and early 20th century as industries developed. However, what makes this little town unusual is the fact that it was created to provide the workers with all the essentials they might need to make their life better. While the company no longer exists, the town is just as it was a century ago.

Trogir, Croatia
Instead of heading to Zagreb, the capital of Croatia, or Dubrovnik, recently made famous by the Game of Thrones franchise, why not take a trip to Trogir. Founded in the 3rd century BC, this town is incredibly old and has a wonderful mix of architecture – from Roman fortresses and churches, to examples of Renaissance and Baroque buildings, which were built during the Venetian period.

Sarlat, France
You may already be familiar with this medieval city without even knowing it, as it is a popular film set location for French, as well as British and American films. Walking across the streets of Sarlat, you will be transformed to 14th century France. We recommend visiting in March, as that is when the annual goose festival takes place, with live geese running around the streets and chefs preparing a glorious outdoor feast.

Willandra Lakes, Australia
Despite the name, this region of Australia doesn’t actually have any lakes, instead the fossil remains and sand foundations are examples of some of the earliest examples of human habitation of the Australian continent. In addition to the archaeological remains of stone tools and early abodes, Lake Mugo in the Willandra region also has, what is believed to be the world’s oldest ritual cremation site.

 

 

HolidayPirates is one of Europe’s fastest growing, free-to-use, travel search platforms and apps, providing users with the best value for money international travel deals. Since its inception in 2012, the company has grown the biggest online travel community in the world, achieved 20 million monthly page visits, 5 million app downloads, having launched services across 10 countries and 7 different languages.

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Education Health

Teens who endure bullying are more likely to smoke, drink and use drugs

Children who are bullied in fifth grade are more likely to become depressed and experiment with drugs and alcohol during their teen years than their peers who didn’t suffer bullying by other kids, a U.S. study suggests.

Researchers followed almost 4,300 students starting in fifth grade, when they were around 11 years old. By tenth grade, 24 percent of the teens drank alcohol, 15 percent smoked marijuana and 12 percent used tobacco.

More frequent episodes of physical and emotional bullying in fifth grade were associated with higher odds of depression by seventh grade, which was in turn linked to greater likelihood of substance use later in adolescence, the study found.

“We drew on the self-medication hypothesis when trying to understand why peer victimization may lead to substance use over time,” said lead study author Valerie Earnshaw, a human development and family studies researcher at the University of Delaware in Newark.

“This suggests that people use substances to try to relieve painful feelings or control their emotions,” Earnshaw said by email. “So, youth who are bullied feel bad, or experience depressive symptoms, and then may use substances to try to feel better.”

For the study, researchers examined data from three surveys conducted from 2004 to 2011 among students at schools in Houston, Los Angeles and Birmingham, Alabama.

Students were asked if they had used tobacco, alcohol or marijuana in the past 30 days and how often they had been victims of bullying by their peers in the previous year. Questions on peer victimization touched on both physical aggression like shoving and kicking as well as emotional taunts like saying nasty things about them to other kids.

At the start of the study in fifth grade, about 10 percent of participants said they had been victims of bulling. This was more common among kids who had chronic illnesses, sexual minorities and boys.

By seventh grade, almost 2 percent of the students reported symptoms of depression.

And by the end of the study in tenth grade, substance use was more common among the kids who had previously reported bullying and depression.

The study isn’t a controlled experiment designed to prove that bullying directly causes depression or that mental health issues directly cause substance use. Another limitation of the study is its reliance on teens to accurately report any episodes of bullying, symptoms of depression or substance use, the authors note.

It’s also possible that teens who are bullied may later wind up drinking or using drugs because their peer groups include many adolescents who do both of these things, whether on sports teams or among crowds of particularly aggressive kids, said Bonnie Leadbeater, a psychology researcher at the University of Victoria in Canada. There is many teens who are addicted to drugs, they need to go rehab otherwise the addiction will destroy their life, here you can find one of the best addiction centers.

“Being ‘trapped’ in these networks can be particularly problematic in high school, where you see the same people every day,” Leadbeater, who wasn’t involved in the study, said by email.

“Youth with multiple networks beyond school through sports, music, art, religious activities, volunteering and work are more apt to find friends and others who see their talents, strengths and abilities,” Leadbeater added. “These strengths are often established in late elementary school.” Kids at this age become more active with all the energy they have to run around, lots of them start to find their role model and start searching up michael schumacher net worth or maybe even cristiano ronaldo too.

The trouble with bullying that leads to mental health problems is that teens with depression and anxiety are more likely to withdraw from peers and lack interest in most things.

“Young teens need to have ways of dealing with peer conflict before it becomes bullying,” Leadbeater said. “Young teens need to believe that getting help is normative and that bullying is not.”

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Health

How to eat healthily when you travel

Whether you are flying to the other side of the globe on a holiday, or just a few hours away for a work trip, it is important that you remember to eat properly and healthily during your travels.

Travelling to the airport, going through security and making sure you head to the right gate can be daunting experiences that demand energy. While some of us might rely on the airline’s free meals, with a recent survey by travel search platform HolidayPirates finding that almost 44% of Brits said they would change airlines if free food wasn’t offered, others would prefer to grab food at the airport, reading some water filter pitcher comparisons is perfect for when you travel because it can help you take water with you to hydrate properly during your trip, last time I contacted a campervan hire in Hobart for my trip I made sure to take with me to hydrate. If you´re more on the older side, age wise, and are looking to get rid of wrinkles instead of lose weight, you can easily find anti wirinkle injections to help your skin look younger.

If you are part of the 72%  surveyed who said they would rather get food at the airport, then you should make sure that the food you eat is both delicious and healthy:

Breakfast

Fruit: Eat a lot of vitamins and fibres when travelling. Airports and airplanes are full of germs so stock up on vitamin C with oranges. Watermelon is another good option as it is rich in antioxidants, and it is also full of water. Three to four slices on the day will help you to stay hydrated during the flight. However, don’t overeat fruit as the sugars may increase your overall blood sugar levels, also to keep fruit always fresh and perfect to eat, you can get a cooler like one of the yeti vs ozark just for that purpose, so are free of germs and ready to eat. You also need to make sure to keep active when you get to your destination, there are some on demand workouts that you can use where ever yo are. When going to the beach to travel make sure to check out best stand up paddle board 2017 – supboarderlife.com for high quality paddle boards.

Dark berries: Opt for the super berries such as blueberries or blackberries, which are full of antioxidants. Research has found that blackcurrants can contain up to eight times the health-boosting antioxidant level of blueberries.

Yogurt: Avoid large portions and fatty foods before or during the flight. Natural yogurt with wholegrain cereals is a good option as it will keep you fuller for longer and at the same time keep the blood sugars balanced. A good alternative that contains more protein is chia pudding and fortunately, some fast food chains started selling this delicious option.

Lunch

Lean protein and wholemeal bread

Skinless chicken and salmon are a great source of lean protein. If you are getting a sandwich try to find sourdough orrye bread, as they are rich in minerals and good at levelling out blood sugar levels all you need to be careful with is the preparation, you can take a part of the chicken and Cut it Fine in small pieces to put it in the sandwich so you enjoy it more. Avoid fatty extras such as mayonnaise and cheese.

Eggs are not just great sources of protein, eggs are also high in minerals, fats and vitamins that are great for improving the skin’s elasticity. The skin often gets very dry when you are on the flight, and needs an extra boost. Medical News Today has suggested that lutein, found in the yolk of eggs can help improve the hydration and elasticity of skin. This is also one of my favourite options, as you can just keep a cooked egg in a container without needing to refrigerate it. Eggs also contain all the nutrients that you need, keeping you fuller for longer.

Dinner

Throughout your travel it is vital you eat often but keep to small portions. Healthy salads are good options for dinner. Leafy greens are high in vitamin A and help to protect your skin, limit dryness and irritation of your skin. Try to get as much dark green salad as possible as a foundation to your salad. Spinach, mache or arugula contain a lot of vitamins and minerals. Try to avoid lettuce if it is iceberg lettuce, as it’s a huge environment villain. Look for salads that contain avocados. They are packed with high amounts of fibre, magnesium, and also possess biotin and Omega fatty acids, which help to prevent dry skin and brittle hair and nails. And it is important to add a good source of protein such as chicken, egg, tuna or fish to your dinner. Foods rich in protein can help minimize the effects of sugary snacks you might have after the meal.

If you are going for a salad, then ask for the salad dressing on the side, or opt for vinaigrette rather than a creamy dressing. Also avoid any spicy dressings or side dishes that can contribute to discomfort and bloating.

Snacks & Drinks

De-caffeinated drinks: Staying hydrated when you’re in the air is important. Chose caffeine-free drinks such as herbal teas and water. Rooibos tea is a good alternative, as it is a caffeine-free but still contains good antioxidants that fight free radicals and inflammations. If you feel like something sweeter, drink coconut water or maple water, which are better alternatives to flavored water. They boast vitamins, electrolytes and minerals and low in sugar, which makes the drinks a good alternative to soft drinks.

Health snacks

Healthy nuts: As a healthy snack, it is great to have a handful of nuts such as almonds, walnuts and pistachios. They can aid in improving heart health by reducing cholesterol levels, increasing brain health thanks to the vitamin E, and reducing stress as healthy nuts are rich in alpha-linolenic acid, which helps to lower stress levels. But as they are high in fat, although it is ‘good fat’ I recommend eating around a handful of nuts per day and I would avoid any nuts that are coated as they can be high in salt.

Edemame beans: Instead of crisps get edemame beans. With low levels of sodium, it is also a good source of dietary fibre, protein, iron, magnesium, as well as Vitamin K and magnesium.

 

Frida Harju is the in-house nutritionist at health app Lifesum.

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Health

Mindfulness meditation ‘works better for women than men’

In a college course that included meditation training, women were more likely than men to report that the practice improved their mood, a small study has found.

Meditation is an increasingly popular form of mental training on college campuses and off. Research suggests it may reduce blood pressure, gastrointestinal symptoms, anxiety, depression and insomnia, according to the National Institutes of Health.

Practitioners direct and redirect their attention to the present moment, often by focusing on their breath.

At the end of a mindfulness meditation course at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island, female students, on average, rated their so-called negative affect significantly lower than at the beginning, indicating better mood. But among male students, the only difference was a very slight increase in their negative affect, possibly indicating a worsened mood, researchers reported in Frontiers in Psychology.

Senior author Willoughby Britton cautioned against concluding that men fail to reap rewards from meditation, though. Instead, the Brown professor of psychiatry and human behavior said the gender differences could reflect variations in the ways men and women tend to regulate their emotions.

“There has just been too much data – both anecdotal and empirical – suggesting that many men benefit from mindfulness,” she said in an email.

Dr. Madhav Goyal, who practices meditation and studies it as a professor at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore, pointed to a group dedicated to practicing meditation.

“Most of the monks who meditate are men,” he said in a phone interview.

Previous research validates the benefits of meditation for men and women, Britton and Goyal both said.

Britton and her colleagues analyzed self-reported surveys from 77 students, 41 men and 36 women who completed 12 weeks of seminars and meditation labs between 2008 and 2011. The labs met three times a week and included about 30 minutes of Buddhist or Daoist meditation practices.

At the end of the course, women self-reported greater gains in their ability to observe their feelings and describe them as well as their ability not to judge or react, the study found.

Men also showed improvements in self-compassion as well as in not judging and not reacting. But they reported an average 3.7 percent increase in their negative affect score, compared to women who showed an average 11.6 percent drop in negative affect.

Though the men’s average negative affect score went up slightly, some of the men probably improved their mood, while the training probably did not lift the spirits of all the women, Britton said.

“We may need to pay more attention to issues of diversity and individual differences that could impact how different people respond to mindfulness interventions,” she said. “The differences we found may not be about gender per se but about different emotion-regulation strategies or goals.”

When faced with challenging feelings, women tend to ruminate, and men tend to find ways to be distracted, Britton said.

“While facing one’s difficulties and feeling one’s emotions may seem to be universally beneficial, it does not take into account that there may be different cultural expectations for men and women around emotionality,” she said.

Men and women may process meditation skills differently, said Goyal, who was not involved in the study. That said, the point of meditation is not to reduce negative affect, though people do use the practice to that end.

The point of meditation is “to learn to be in the present moment and through this practice over time, one gains greater understanding of themselves,” Goyal said.

Sydney Tan, a Brown senior who took the class as a sophomore and served as a discussion leader this year, has seen many men who benefited from the class and some women who struggled with it.

“I actually had more women talk to me about the difficulties of sitting for a long time and being still,” she said in a phone interview.

“It’s more complex than just the duality of this is the women’s experience, and this is the men’s experience,” she said. “It’s more nuanced.”

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Health

Mindfulness-based stress reduction only slightly improves low back pain

Mindfulness-based stress reduction programs (MSBR) appear to improve low back pain only slightly, and only temporarily, a review of previous research suggests.

These programs combine meditation while sitting and walking, yoga, focusing attention on different parts of the body, and incorporation of mindfulness/awareness into everyday life. Earlier studies found MBSR to be helpful for a variety of chronic pain conditions.

But for low back pain, “it was surprising that we could not identify any difference between MBSR, usual care, or other psychological interventions on ‘mindfulness’ and acceptance of pain in the short and long term,” Dennis Anheyer of University of Duisburg-Essen, Germany, told Reuters Health by email.

Anheyer and colleagues looked at data from seven previously published studies involving 864 patients altogether.

The studies that looked at pain intensity and pain-related disability found small improvements with MBSR only over the short term, and even these improvements were of questionable significance, they report in Annals of Internal Medicine.

Some studies showed meaningful improvements in physical functioning in the short term but the improvements not sustained in the long term.

“Our review also showed that studies using MBSR programs that included yoga had better effects on disability and physical functioning than studies using MBSR programs without yoga,” Anheyer said. “Physical activity might therefore be important for these factors.”

Surprisingly, MBSR was not associated with improvements in mindfulness.

The inconsistent findings point to a need for larger, carefully designed studies of MBSR and its various components in patients with low back pain, the researchers say.

In the meantime, patients with low back pain can safely attend MBSR courses, Anheyer said. “However,” he added, “they should not neglect the physical activity. (And) if you practice meditation or any kind of physical activity, do it regularly and continuously.”

Dr. Judith A. Turner from the University of Washington in Seattle, who has studied MBSR and cognitive behavioral therapy for chronic low back pain, told Reuters Health by email, “People with low back pain may find MBSR to be helpful, not only for their pain but also for managing stress and other problems. The risks are minimal, especially when compared to some other treatments for low back pain, such as surgery and opioid medication. Benefits for pain may be modest, but this is true for most treatments for chronic low back pain.”

“It is interesting that interventions that included a yoga component reduced disability, whereas those that did not include yoga did not reduce disability,” she said. “This suggests that MBSR programs might be most helpful for back pain when they include yoga, although more research is needed to confirm this suggestion.”

“This review was of only a small number of studies and some of the studies included had methodological problems that limit confidence in the results,” Turner said. “Nonetheless, patients with chronic low back pain and their health care providers are looking for effective treatments that are alternatives to opioid medication, and MBSR is one such option. Another such option is cognitive-behavioral therapy, which has been demonstrated effective in the short- and long-term for chronic low back pain.”

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Education Health

Bullying may be decreasing in US schools

The various efforts used to curb bullying in U.S. schools may be working, a new study suggests.

The study was confined to one large school district in the state of Maryland. But among the students there, bullying in person or online decreased between 2005 and 2014, researchers found.

“It gives us some idea that what we’re doing continues to work,” said senior author Catherine Bradshaw, of the University of Virginia in Charlottesville.

People should not take the results to mean bullying is no longer a significant concern, she told Reuters Health.

“It continues to be a concern for students who continue to be a part of it,” she said.

Writing May 1st in the journal Pediatrics, she and her colleagues note that bullying has received a lot of media attention over the past decade – and as a result, many people may believe it’s on the rise.

Past research suggests bullying among school-age children is decreasing, they add, but that research was often flawed. For example, some studies did not use a standardized definition of bullying; other studies only analyzed people who were victimized or only elementary, middle or high school students.

For the new study, the researchers analyzed survey responses collected between 2005 and 2014 from 246,306 fourth- through 12th-graders at 109 schools in Maryland.

The survey defined bullying the same way the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta does. The definition includes “actions like threatening, teasing, name-calling, ignoring, rumor-spreading, sending hurtful emails and text messages, and leaving someone out on purpose.”

Among other questions, the survey asked students if they’d been bullied or if they had bullied someone else at least twice in the last month.

Rates of bullying ranged from about 13 percent to about 29 percent. Rates of being a bully ranged from 7 percent to about 21 percent.

Over the 10-year study period, being bullied, being a bully and witnessing bullying became less common. There were also decreases in the rates of student reports of being pushed, threatened, cyberbullied and having rumors spread about them.

Rates of students reporting feeling safe at school increased over the 10 years, too.

“In the more recent years, that’s where we’ve seen a steeper decline in the data,” said Bradshaw.

While the study can’t say why bullying rates decreased over the decade or why the decrease was steeper in recent years, the researchers suggest it may be due to increasing number of anti-bullying policies and an increase in evidence-based anti-bullying policies.

All states now have laws that address bullying, the researchers write.

Can playground design help curb bullying?

The most successful anti-bullying programs are typically science based, intensive, involve the whole school and engage students, teachers and parents, according to Stephen Leff and Dr. Chris Feudtner, of the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine.

“These programs often try to build skills in youth problem-solving abilities, empathy, perspective-taking, and how to be a positive bystander,” Leff and Feudtner write in an editorial accompanying the new study.

14 ways you can tackle cyberbullying

They add that the new data is encouraging, but “we need to sustain our focus to continue the decrease of bullying and victimization in schools across the nation.”

Bradshaw said the nation’s foot must be kept on the gas in order to make progress on decreasing rates of bullying.

“We wan to build momentum and not lose any traction,” she said.

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Education Health

College is ‘the gateway to marijuana’

College is increasingly a gateway for young adults in the U.S. to begin using marijuana and the risk keeps growing the more “normalized” pot use becomes, researchers say.

“We have been expecting marijuana and cbd oil capsules use to increase among young adults,” lead author Richard Miech said.

Young adults today as compared to those of the past are less likely to hold the belief that occasional marijuana use will negatively affect their health, said Miech, a researcher at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.

“We’ve seen again and again that when this belief trends down then marijuana use increases (e.g. in the early 1990s), and, conversely, that when this belief trends up then marijuana use declines (e.g. in the mid-1980s),” he said.

Miech and his colleagues think the recent string of U.S. states having legalized recreational use of marijuana accounts in part for the declining proportion of young adults who believe that occasional marijuana use is harmful to health, but is not forbidden for adults because of their age, and they can purchase it in some states and countries, as other services like adult material and escorting from sites likes zoomescorts.co.uk.

“It is likely that at least some young adults interpret this wave of legalization as a signal that marijuana use is safe and state-sanctioned,” he said.

To see how that is affecting recreational use among young people, the study team analyzed data from annual surveys of more than 50,000 adults and adolescents. The surveys have been ongoing since 1975, and are funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, Miech said.

They focused on participants who were 19 to 22 years old between 1977 and 2015 and had never used marijuana before their senior year in high school. That was around 64 percent of participants.

About 9 percent of 19-year-olds and 15 percent of 22-year-olds not in college started using marijuana after high school and those percentages remained stable through the entire study period, the researchers report in American Journal of Public Health.

Among college students, the proportion that started using marijuana ranged from 13 percent to 17 percent between 1977 and 2012, then those numbers crept up to between 18 percent and 21 percent from 2013 to 2015.

“We found that marijuana initiation did increase among young adults age 19-22 since 2013, but only among those in college. There was no change in levels of marijuana initiation among 19-22 year-olds who were not in college,” Miech said.

The college environment appears to promote substance use, perhaps in part because of the lack of parental supervision, lots of free time and a party culture, Miech said.

“For what it’s worth, higher levels of substance use in college is also seen with binge drinking (5+ drinks in one sitting): youth age 19-22 are much more likely to binge drink if they are in college as compared to their age peers who are not in college,” Miech said.

Parents should know the majority of young adults who attend college do not initiate marijuana use, Miech added, but the number is increasing.

“There are many reasons why college students might try or use marijuana,” said Christine Lee, director of the Center for the Study of Health and Risk Behaviors at the University of Washington in Seattle, who wasn’t involved in the study.

“We surveyed incoming first-year college students on why they tried or use marijuana . . . . For some, experimentation was a motivator. Young adults might just want to try it and see what it is about. For others, they might use marijuana for reasons such as for social bonding, relaxation, boredom, to fit in, or to enjoy the feeling,” Lee said by email.

It would be helpful to begin to identify whether there are high-risk periods for marijuana initiation such as the first six weeks of college, as the study authors suggest, or specific events such as 21st birthdays, particularly for students living in states where recreational marijuana use is legal for those 21 and over. You can also invest in Marijuana stocks.

“If we can identify certain risk periods, it would be easier for colleges to target resources and prevention activities to those times,” she said.

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Education Health

College is 'the gateway to marijuana'

College is increasingly a gateway for young adults in the U.S. to begin using marijuana and the risk keeps growing the more “normalized” pot use becomes, researchers say.
“We have been expecting marijuana and cbd oil capsules use to increase among young adults,” lead author Richard Miech said.
Young adults today as compared to those of the past are less likely to hold the belief that occasional marijuana use will negatively affect their health, said Miech, a researcher at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.
“We’ve seen again and again that when this belief trends down then marijuana use increases (e.g. in the early 1990s), and, conversely, that when this belief trends up then marijuana use declines (e.g. in the mid-1980s),” he said.
Miech and his colleagues think the recent string of U.S. states having legalized recreational use of marijuana accounts in part for the declining proportion of young adults who believe that occasional marijuana use is harmful to health, but is not forbidden for adults because of their age, and they can purchase it in some states and countries, as other services like adult material and escorting from sites likes zoomescorts.co.uk.
“It is likely that at least some young adults interpret this wave of legalization as a signal that marijuana use is safe and state-sanctioned,” he said.
To see how that is affecting recreational use among young people, the study team analyzed data from annual surveys of more than 50,000 adults and adolescents. The surveys have been ongoing since 1975, and are funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, Miech said.
They focused on participants who were 19 to 22 years old between 1977 and 2015 and had never used marijuana before their senior year in high school. That was around 64 percent of participants.
About 9 percent of 19-year-olds and 15 percent of 22-year-olds not in college started using marijuana after high school and those percentages remained stable through the entire study period, the researchers report in American Journal of Public Health.
Among college students, the proportion that started using marijuana ranged from 13 percent to 17 percent between 1977 and 2012, then those numbers crept up to between 18 percent and 21 percent from 2013 to 2015.
“We found that marijuana initiation did increase among young adults age 19-22 since 2013, but only among those in college. There was no change in levels of marijuana initiation among 19-22 year-olds who were not in college,” Miech said.
The college environment appears to promote substance use, perhaps in part because of the lack of parental supervision, lots of free time and a party culture, Miech said.
“For what it’s worth, higher levels of substance use in college is also seen with binge drinking (5+ drinks in one sitting): youth age 19-22 are much more likely to binge drink if they are in college as compared to their age peers who are not in college,” Miech said.
Parents should know the majority of young adults who attend college do not initiate marijuana use, Miech added, but the number is increasing.
“There are many reasons why college students might try or use marijuana,” said Christine Lee, director of the Center for the Study of Health and Risk Behaviors at the University of Washington in Seattle, who wasn’t involved in the study.
“We surveyed incoming first-year college students on why they tried or use marijuana . . . . For some, experimentation was a motivator. Young adults might just want to try it and see what it is about. For others, they might use marijuana for reasons such as for social bonding, relaxation, boredom, to fit in, or to enjoy the feeling,” Lee said by email.
It would be helpful to begin to identify whether there are high-risk periods for marijuana initiation such as the first six weeks of college, as the study authors suggest, or specific events such as 21st birthdays, particularly for students living in states where recreational marijuana use is legal for those 21 and over. You can also invest in Marijuana stocks.
“If we can identify certain risk periods, it would be easier for colleges to target resources and prevention activities to those times,” she said.

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Education Health

Can playground design help curb bullying?

Playgrounds designed with risk-taking in mind may mean more pushing and shoving during recess, but they also might make kids less prone to bullying, a small experiment in New Zealand suggests.

For the study, researchers randomly selected eight elementary schools to get modified playgrounds with lots of loose and moving parts, chances to socialize and build things, and opportunities to play with bikes and skateboards. A control group of eight schools kept their traditional playgrounds.

After two years, children at the schools with modified playgrounds were about 33 percent more likely to report pushing and shoving during recess than kids at schools with traditional playgrounds, researchers report in Pediatrics. With modified playgrounds, however, kids were 31 percent less likely to report bullying to teachers.

“To us, the findings that intervention children reported more pushing and shoving yet were less likely to tell a teacher were fascinating,” said senior study author Rachael Taylor of the University of Otago in New Zealand.

The study doesn’t shed light on why this happened, so it’s hard to say whether kids got better at resolving disputes on their own or perhaps became more resilient to behavior that might have felt like bullying before, Taylor said by email.

Researchers assessed all of the existing playgrounds at the 16 primary schools included in the study, then made changes to half of the spaces to encourage more risk-taking and challenges.

Along with modified physical spaces to play, the study also encouraged schools with altered playgrounds to change rules for recess to allow things like tree climbing, rough-and-tumble play and going outside even on rainy days.

A total of 840 kids started the study, and 630 of them remained after two years. Children ranged in age from 6 to 9 years old.

With modified playgrounds, kids were 66 percent more likely to report playing with a lot of children after one year, and after two years they were also 64 percent more likely to report being happy at school.

After one year, parents of kids who had modified playgrounds were almost twice as likely to say kids had happy relationships with other students. But after two years, the reverse was true.

Teachers didn’t report differences in name-calling or cruel teasing based on whether playgrounds were altered for the study. But teachers did report more physical bullying and deliberate exclusion with modified playgrounds.

The main limitation of the study is that bullying is difficult to assess, the authors note. In addition, the study was too small to detect meaningful differences between girls and boys and had too few teachers to draw many conclusions from what educators observed.

Even so, the results suggest it may make sense to move from play areas that are more structured to spaces that offer an element of risk and fewer rules, said Sarah Clark, co-director of the C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital National Poll on Children’s Health at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.

“Too often, parents’ inclination is to remove anything that could be potentially risky and they push schools to do the same – but that inclination works against kids’ developmental need to use play as a way to challenge themselves,” Clark, who wasn’t involved in the study, said by email. “So parents, back off and allow kids a little more freedom in their play space and style.”

Kids need chances to play with fewer rules, said Dr. Cora Collette Breuner, a researcher at Seattle Children’s Hospital and the University of Washington who wasn’t involved in the study.

So what should parents tell their children about playtime?

“Take risks; Band-Aids are there for a reason,” Breuner said by email. “I will be there when you need me but not when you don’t.”

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