The Health News United Kingdom October 8 2017

  • Researchers are seeking about 500  NHS patients to try out a new “universal” vaccine against seasonal flu. The experimental vaccine works differently from the one currently available, which has to be remade each year based on a “best guess” of what type of flu is likely to be about.
  • A large survey has found that a majority of girls with low body esteem will skip meals and avoid seeing friends and family, participating in extracurricular activities or seeing a doctor. The research, based on interviews with 5,165 girls aged 10 to 17 in 14 countries, also found that more than half of girls with low body esteem struggle to be assertive.
  • A study suggests that anxiety and depression caused by childhood bullying decreases over time, showing that children are able to recover. The University College London study of 11,000 twins found anxiety problems were still present two years on, but had disappeared after five years.

News on Health Professional Radio. Today is the 8th of  October 2017. Read by Tabetha Moreto. Health News

http://www.bbc.com/news/health-41467097

Researchers are seeking about five hundred NHS patients to try out a new “universal” vaccine against seasonal flu. The experimental vaccine works differently from the one currently available, which has to be remade each year based on a “best guess” of what type of flu is likely to be about.The new jab targets part of the virus that does not change each year. This means the vaccine should work against human, bird and swine flu, say the team at University of Oxford.

Last winter’s vaccine cut the risk of flu in adults under the age of sixty five by about forty percent, but barely worked in people over sixty five, despite being a good match for the type of flu in circulation. As people age, their immune systems are often weaker and their bodies may not respond as well to a vaccine as younger people’s bodies. Professor Sarah Gilbert and colleagues believe that using their vaccine alongside the current one could help.It is the world’s first widespread human testing of such a vaccine, according to the National Institute for Health Research, which is supporting the project.

Patients aged sixty five or older and living in Berkshire and Oxfordshire will be invited to take part in the trial. Half of the five hundred volunteers will receive the usual seasonal flu jab and a placebo or dummy jab, while the other half with get the regular vaccine plus the new experimental one.The new vaccine uses a novel way to get the body to ward off flu. Flu viruses look a bit like a ball covered in pins. Current flu jabs work by getting the body’s immune system to recognise and attack the pin heads or surface proteins of the virus.

The NHS is braced for a bad flu season this winter, following the worst outbreak in many years in Australia and New Zealand. Flu is easily transmitted and even people with mild or no symptoms can infect others.

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2017/oct/05/poor-body-image-makes-girls-less-assertive-and-risks-health-study-finds

A large survey has found that a majority of girls with low body esteem will skip meals and avoid seeing friends and family, participating in extracurricular activities or seeing a doctor.
The research, based on interviews with five thousand one hundred sixty five girls aged ten to seventeen in fourteen countries, also found that more than half of girls with low body esteem struggle to be assertive. The survey, carried out by Edelman Intelligence for the two thousand seventeen Dove Global Girls Beauty and Confidence Report, found that only forty six percent of girls globally had high body esteem, while the figure was even lower in the UK or thirty nine percent. Of the countries included, only China and Japan fared worse.

Seven in ten girls (nine out of ten in the UK) with low body esteem told the researchers they stopped themselves from eating or otherwise put their health at risk. Eight out of ten (nine out of ten in the UK) said they avoided seeing friends and family or trying out for a team or club.
In each case, the figure among girls with high body esteem was much lower. The report concludes that higher levels of body esteem have a lasting impact on a girl’s confidence, resilience and life satisfaction. Girls with low body esteem are more likely to succumb to beauty and appearance pressures, withdraw from “fundamental life-building activities” and fail to reach their potential, it says. It found that girls with low body esteem feel particular pressure from photographs of beautiful girls or women in magazines but the majority of girls acknowledge that they present unrealistic aspirations. Seven in ten of all girls surveyed understood that images were altered or airbrushed and the same proportion agreed that very few women looked like those on screen.

The other countries featured in the report, chosen for their diversity of culture and tradition around beauty, were Australia, Brazil, Canada, Germany, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Russia, South Africa and Turkey.

http://www.bbc.com/news/health-41503014

A study suggests that anxiety and depression caused by childhood bullying decreases over time, showing that children are able to recover.  The University College London study of eleven thousand twins found anxiety problems were still present two years on, but had disappeared after five years. It said minimising the effects of bullying in schools was very important.
Psychiatrists said bullying could have serious effects on young people’s mental health for a long time. The researchers, writing in JAMA Psychiatry, said the results showed the potential for resilience in children exposed to bullying.
By surveying more than eleven thousand twins at the age of eleven, fourteen and sixteen, researchers were able to look at the associations between bullying and mental health.
They said bullying was only partly to blame for the mental health problems experienced by bullied children but could cause: anxiety; depression; hyperactivity and behavioural problems.
Although, these effects lessened over time, sixteen-year-olds who had been bullied at the age of eleven were still more likely than those who had not to have paranoid thoughts and a tendency for their thoughts to become derailed, the study said. Study author Jean-Baptiste Pingault, from the division of psychology and language sciences at UCL, said the findings offered a message of hope.”Bullying certainly causes suffering, but the impact on mental health decreases over time, so children are able to recover in the medium term,” he said. Children and young people needed access to specialist mental health professions who could provide the right services to meet their needs.

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