Sunday, October 20, 2013

Concern or Curiosity?

In case you’re unfamiliar with how to identify an OPP car, our local newspaper hosted a full colour front page photo in this week’s edition.  In our neck of the woods, colour photos rarely appear in the paper, unless paid for, so this addition was special.

The headline?  OPP EXTRACT BARRICADED MAN.  For the full story, you need to turn to page 3.  A 27 year old man (not identified) however the street was named in this small town, was sent to local hospital for assessment.
People in our community, spending that Sunday afternoon 10 hours away in Toronto, heard of this story as it unfolded.  Many people knew of it through Facebook or through local gossip.
What a demonstration of the power of communication!  Two questions make me think though.
Is it not clear that the gentleman involved was having a difficult day….was the newspaper sensitive to that?
As a community, if we can express “concern” after someone is having a difficult day…..could we be even increasingly supportive by expressing concern before someone has such a difficult day?  Before the OPP and Crisis Unit and the local media arrived on the scene, could someone in the community have provided some help and support when the problem was unfolding?   Were there no signs that a bad day was brewing?
Are we reacting with concern or curiosity and prejudice?  Please let me know.

Monday, October 14, 2013

It could all be in your?

There is no denying that some people think mental health problems are all in a person’s head.   Mental illness is real, it’s not imaginary and while there is a link to the brain, there may also be a link to the gut

New research is thinking that bad bacteria in your gut can produce toxins and make your brain toxic too….literally (for example, the bad guys might contribute to depression and anxiety)

The good news is that you can also produce helpful bacteria such as the bacteria in yogurt which just might, in turn, lift your spirits!

It’s all new research and if you don’t like yogurt, anything fermented might be just as good (as long as it’s not high in fat or high in sugar) You can also try yummy fermented things like sauerkraut!

Its thanksgiving weekend, so we’re not just talking turkey here (which contains the amino acid tryptophan that also can relax you)  

If you want to find out more: here’s the audio and story link….

Perhaps following your gut is too simple. 

I do know, though, that when I’m feeling down or uptight I need to do something about it or I never feel better. So instead of indulging in that piece of cake and regretting it later, please pass the yogurt!  There seems a new yogurt advertised weekly to tantalize your taste buds…but please don’t flavour it like turkey J

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Pandas, not as cute as you think

This CBC radio show caught my attention this week...the discussion was about rheumatic fever, a child hood illness that I had stemming from strep throat.  Apparently, I "got off" pretty easy and didn't develop Pandas.

Pandas are not the cute and cuddly things that Harper and his wife had a photo op with as they were welcomed to our Toronto zoo
Pandas is a medical term for Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Streptococcal infections.  Scientists believe that Obsessive compulsive disorder can develop quickly in children ( a mental health disorder leading to uncontrollable compulsions, thoughts, behaviours) from strep throat...but when treated quickly, can be averted.  Here's the story. so cute anymore, but something you might want to share with others the next time you see one in a movie, store and next to Harper.  Thanks!