Sociologist : When fracking becomes a mental health disaster

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“What’s stressful is the unknowns and how this industry is operating behind a curtain all the time.”

Fracking’s devastating impact on our health and the planet, not to mention its contributions to climate change, are extremely well-documented. What’s not as well understood, however, is how it impacts our mental health.

As it turns out, Colorado State University sociologist Stephanie Malin wrote in The Conversation, the answer is “quite a bit.” As she describes it, the problem is two-fold: stress and other direct impacts caused by the increased noise in the area, and then a feeling of powerlessness to do anything about it.

Citing her own research in the journal Energy Research & Social Science, Malin argues that fracking leads to serious mental health issues throughout Colorado — and that those affected are being overlooked.

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The surprising upsides of worrying

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Anxiety can be exhausting, but there is often a reason for it – and there are some surprising benefits to certain kinds of worrying.

“I’m a near-professional worrier,” admits Kate Sweeny ruefully. She’s struggled for much of her life with anxiety over things she can’t entirely control – including, these days, whether her parents are following social-distancing guidance during the Covid-19 pandemic.

A constant hum of low-grade worry affects many people, but what’s distinct about Sweeny is that it partly motivated her career choices. As a health psychologist at the University of California, Riverside, she specialises in understanding worry and stress.

“Not everybody uses their own life as fodder for research,” she laughs, but she’s found inspiration in her own experiences. One of her surprising findings has been that worrying can be beneficial in a variety of situations, from waiting for exam results to safeguarding health.

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Five traditional industries on the verge of an innovation boom

 

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According to the technology and data company Crunchbase, an astounding $825 million in venture capital investment has flowed into legal and legal-tech sectors just since the start of 2018.What do you think about when you hear the terms “disruption” and “technological innovation?” What industries and sectors come to mind?

Autonomous cars, cloud computing, artificial intelligence, genetic testing, cryptocurrencies and various other technologies likely populate the top of your list.

However, if you strictly limit your perception of innovation to these flashy concepts, you could be missing out on transformational booms that are happening across industries that wouldn’t be categorized as cutting edge.

Because of significant injections of investment capital and a traunch of fresh ideas, new companies and opportunities are arising in traditional fields that may challenge your perception about which markets are hot versus which are not.

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Mood-forecasting tech could help stop bad moods even before they strike

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Wearable devices might even help prevent suicide by giving a heads-up about worrisome behavior.

Watch for sports with smartwatch. Jogging training for marathon.

The same technology that is used to track physical activity could be used to track our psychological health.

Imagine an app or wearable device that could tell a day in advance that an at-risk individual would experience suicidal thoughts — and alert the person and their trusted contacts. That might soon be a reality, thanks to the nascent field of mood forecasting.

We’ve become used to fitness trackers and other electronic devices that monitor our physical activity, and now scientists say similar technology can be used to track our psychological health in ways never before possible.

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Why Millennial men don’t go to therapy

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The most depressed generation won’t get help despite having more access than ever before

About eight years ago, Eugene was in the midst of transferring colleges when he noticed how his mood sagged, seemingly at random times, triggered by the smallest things. He had spent the previous two years at a California State University “smoking, drinking and playing computer games” before realizing that he was treading water and wasting time. He felt envy toward friends who had a career path, but also contempt for other students who were either coasting or were just plain dumb.

Eventually, Eugene dropped out of school, aiming to transfer to a more prestigious private university. But over the next few months, daily routines like pulling himself out of bed and getting dressed loomed over him with daunting effect. “I just didn’t feel great,” he says. “Everything looked bad, and I couldn’t shake it. Then you wake up one day and think things like, Why don’t I just fucking kill myself? That made me step back, and wonder what was really wrong.”

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Up to 1 in 5 U.S. children have a mental health disorder: CDC

Only 21 percent of affected children actually get treatment.

About 7 million to 12 million children in the U.S., up to 1 in 5,  experience a mental-health disorder each year, according to a new report billed as the first comprehensive look at the mental-health status of American children.

 

 

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1 in 10 kids in the U.S. lives with an alcoholic parent: study

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Survey data from 2005 through 2010 and found that, on average, 7.5 million children lived with a parent abusing alcohol during any given year.

According a new government study released on Thursday, more than one in 10 U.S. children live with an alcoholic parent and are at increased risk of developing a host of health problems of their own.

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