Month: August 2014

St. George’s University Hosts Two-Day Conference on Early Childhood Development

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Relationships Help Positive Childhood Outcomes

More than 190 caregivers, parents, and teachers convened at St. George’s University’s Bourne Lecture Hall at the end of June for the inaugural Caregiver Conference on Early Child Development. REACH Grenada and the Windward Islands Research and Education Foundation (WINDREF) brought together experts in early childhood development and infant-parent mental health, to focus on the importance of early adaptive interactions that benefit both the child and caregiver. Also in attendance were representatives from the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) Eastern Caribbean division as well as the Foundation for the Development of Caribbean Children.

“Infant and parent mental health is synonymous with healthy social development,” said Dr. Richard Honigman, REACH Grenada’s Advisory Board Chair and a general pediatrician with over 30 years of experience. “Healthy social development is about how the child fits into the world around them, how they experience and interpret the world, and their place in the world. It embodies relationships with others, smoothing developmental progress and increasing ability to control behavior, express emotions, and the ability to explore.”

Dr. Edward Tronick, University Distinguished Professor at University of Massachusetts Boston and Harvard Medical School, delivered a keynote address on how infants make sense of their world.

“Infants are trying to make sense of all of their new experiences and their parents are critical in helping them do so.” Dr. Tronick stated. “When the child and the parent are successful in making sense of the world for the child, her or she feels secure and develops normally. When making meaning about the world is unsuccessful the child, like an adult, becomes confused, anxious, even fearful, and development is compromised.”

The Minister of Social Development, Hon. Delma Thomas, endorsed the initiative undertaken by the organizers reaffirming the Government’s commitment for strategic alliances geared at social development. “The support we get from organizations such as REACH Grenada, WINDREF, UNICEF and others are always timely,” she stated. “You can rest assured of our commitment to work as partners because we are working towards the same goal. It is therefore critical that as we go forward we continue to share ideas and improve the quality of care our nation’s children receive.”

Over the course of two days, other topics were discussed such as “The Developing Child in Relationships” as well as “How Messy Social Interactions Lead to Positive Infant and Child Development” and “Working with the Child/Family System.” UNICEF and the Foundation for the Development of Caribbean Children have expressed interest in assisting REACH Grenada and WINDREF to plan future conferences, with the hopes of eventually expanding to other nations.

Source: St. George’s University

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New Age Stress Buster That Reduces High Blood Pressure

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Researchers have observed the new mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) technique of reducing high blood pressure or hypertension has some positive changes on patients.

MBSR technique builds on recent research findings that a positive attitude towards life, keeping the mind free of too much stress, anxiety and following simple tips to de-stress and relax play a crucial role in curbing high blood pressure.

Traditionally hypertension and high blood pressure are treated with medication, lifestyle changes and diet.

According to a study by the Case Western Reserve University’s School of Medicine, the new MBSR technique was tried on a sample of about 100 patients aged between 30-60 years with pre-hypertension and high blood pressure, who were not under medication.

These patients were required to go through body scan exercises, meditation and yoga for a period of 45 minutes six days a week. The mindfulness-based stress reduction program also included discussions on stress related topics and assignments to track the patient’s mood and anxiety levels.

The researchers of the MBSR study noticed a considerable reduction in the primary conditions and resulted in a 4.8-mm Hg reduction in systolic blood pressure (SBP) and a 1.9mm Hg reduction in diastolic blood pressure (DBP).

Many more trials must be conducted to further evaluate the effectiveness of the mindfulness-based stress reduction technique, as it could have other applications for multiple maladies. Richard Josephson of Case Western Reserve University’s School of Medicine said, ‘This was one of the first prospective randomized trials of MBSR as a nonpharmocologic treatment option.’

Source : medindia.net

Top Ten Facts About Diabetes

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1. Diabetes is a silent epidemic and according to WHO there are 246 million people in the world living with diabetes. This is almost 6% of the world’s adult population.

2. Diabetes in Asians is five times the rate of the white population

3. India is the diabetes capital of the world. It is estimated that currently there are 40 million people with diabetes in India and by 2025 this number will swell to 70 million. This would mean every fifth diabetic in the world would be an Indian.

4.Central obesity or apple shape of the body and insulin resistance is the main reason for diabetes increase in Indians

5. Diabetes causes 6 deaths every minute and one in 20 deaths in the world is due to the condition. Every year it is estimated that 3.2 million people in the world die due to the diabetes or its related causes.

6. Diabetes is an important ‘silent killer disease’ as there is usually no early symptom of the disease. The commonest early symptom is feeling thirsty

7. Almost 90 to 95% of diabetes is of type 2 or maturity onset type; that affects people in their middle age. Type 1 or juvenile diabetes affects 70,000 children under the age of 15 years every year.

8. The major cause of increase in the incidence of diabetes is a sedentary lifestyle. Exercise and diet can either reduce or delay the incidence of diabetes by over 50%.

9. Diabetes is the number one cause of kidney failure in the world. Besides this every year it is responsible for 5% or 5 million blindness in adults and one million limb amputations. Diabetes is also an important cause of heart disease, stroke and cataract.

10. The current cost of treating diabetes and its complications in the world is estimated as US $ 215-375 billion. The disease is growing fastest in developing countries where there are more people in the lower and middle-income group.

Source: medindia.net