Health & WellnessS


Babies have an eye for statistics

Babies have many talents - such as the ability to charm a roomful of adults. But statistical reasoning? It's not the first skill that springs to mind regarding a gurgling 8-month-old.

Yet researchers have found that babies do possess an intuitive grasp of statistics. The work, published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA , is amongst the first to show that infants can predict the likelihood of a future event.


Fear of messing up may undermine interracial contact

Democratic consultant Donna Brazile brought home America's reluctance to talk openly about race in a New York Times article that preceded the Barack Obama speech that now has the whole nation buzzing. In essence, she said in her quote, any serious discussion about race has the effect of clearing a room.

Brazile's remark and the presidential hopeful's groundbreaking speech about a subject that politicians generally tiptoe around in public hint at the complexities of race relations in America today. As we approach the second decade of the 21st century, research shows that many Americans feel anxious during interracial interactions whether or not race is even mentioned.

Now a provocative new study from Northwestern University suggests that whites who are particularly worried about appearing racist seem to suffer from anxiety that instinctively may cause them to avoid interaction with blacks in the first place.


Home defibrillators do not increase survival

Chicago - Having a defibrillator at home does not protect heart attack survivors against a cardiac arrest any better than having someone at home with good cardiopulmonary resuscitation training, U.S. researchers said on Tuesday.


Preliminary study links preemies with autism signs

CHICAGO - A small study of toddlers finds that about one-quarter of babies born very prematurely had signs of autism on an early screening test.

The research is preliminary since formal autism testing wasn't done. But the results are provocative, suggesting that tiny preemies may face greater risks of developing autism than previously thought.


Girls get chance to speak their mind

Mentors offer grades 7 and 8 students advice to boost self-esteem, stay safe

Adults may be surprised to hear what grade 7 and 8 girls have on their minds.

When should I become sexually active? What do I do if my boyfriend thinks I'm fat? What should I do if a guy asked me out, but I'm a lesbian?


Relaxation skills help some skip hypertension meds

New York - Learning stress management techniques could help people with a type of high blood pressure common among the elderly to eliminate their need for antihypertensive drugs, a new study shows.

Individuals with the condition, known as isolated systolic hypertension, who participated in relaxation training had a better chance of being able to drop at least one of their blood pressure drugs than individuals in a control group who did not participate in relaxation training, Dr. Jeffery A. Dusek of Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston and colleagues found.

Life Preserver

Seat belts protect unborn babies: study

Washington - A pregnant woman who wears a seat belt greatly reduces the risk that her baby will die or be seriously hurt in a vehicle crash, according to a study that debunks the notion that seat belts are harmful to the fetus.

The University of Michigan researchers estimated that based on their findings, published on Wednesday, the lives of 200 of the roughly 370 fetuses killed yearly in U.S. vehicle crashes would be spared if all pregnant women wore seat belts.

Eye 2

The untrained eye: Confusing sexual interest with friendliness

New research from Indiana University and Yale suggests that college-age men confuse friendly non-verbal cues with cues for sexual interest because the men have a less discerning eye than women -- but their female peers aren't far behind.


Why we don't always learn from our mistakes

If you are struggling to retrieve a word that you are certain is on the tip of your tongue, or trying to perfect a slapshot that will send your puck flying into a hockey net, or if you keep stumbling over the same sequence of notes on the piano, be warned: you might be unconsciously creating a pattern of failure, a new study reveals.


UK: Drugs 'kill 23,000 Alzheimer's victims a year'

More than 23,000 elderly people with Alzheimer's could be dying prematurely in care homes each year after being given drugs to keep them quiet, a report claims today.

Anti-psychotic drugs, which are not licensed to treat dementia but are prescribed to control agitation, sleep disturbance and aggression, are being given to 100,000 elderly people to keep them "quiet and manageable", says a report by Paul Burstow, the Liberal Democrat MP and a campaigner for the rights of elderly people.