How to keep your aging mind sharp

Research supports the ‘use it or lose it’ theory of mental ability

How to keep your aging mind sharpJust as we need to exercise our bodies to keep them healthy as we age, we must also exercise our minds to keep them from deteriorating. Research shows that people who engage in more activities that stimulate the mind have sharper cognitive functioning as they age than people who do not challenge their brains. In…

Perfectionism is a form of theft

Attempting to make everything perfect steals time from your clients, your employer, your family and yourself

Perfectionism is a form of theftFor her entire career, Phoebe has really struggled with how to manage her time. She has a great attitude and the quality of her work is first-rate, but it seems to take her twice as long as anyone else to bring a project to completion. Recently she moved into a new role, replacing someone who…

Early intervention important when fighting depression

If you are depressed you should not procrastinate and you should not settle for partial treatment

Early intervention important when fighting depressionIn the fight against depression, time is the enemy. Early intervention is critical when treating this chronic disorder and it often determines the success of treatment. What many people are unaware of is that depression can be a progressive disorder that gets worse as time goes on. Not only does the person experience more severe…

Patients can suffer from multiple mental disorders

It is important for physicians to thoroughly screen for all conditions if the patient is to be treated properly

Patients can suffer from multiple mental disordersThere are two difficulties in the diagnosis and treatment of mental illness: the fairly common occurrence of more than one diagnosis at the same time in the same patient, and the similarities and overlapping symptoms of many psychiatric disorders, making it difficult to make a clear distinction or choose appropriate treatment methods. These difficulties may…

Ireland’s abortion referendum puts it all on the table

If you probe the granular views of most people, I suspect you’ll find they’re somewhere between the two extremes

Ireland’s abortion referendum puts it all on the tableThere is no abortion law in Canada. Canadians uneasy about that can look across the Atlantic for an alternative way of doing things. On May 25, the Republic of Ireland goes to the polls in an abortion-related constitutional referendum. Abortion was outlawed in Ireland by the Offences Against the Person Act passed by the United…

Suffering from chronic pain? Don’t give up hope

Many people have ongoing pain where there is no obvious injury, or continue to have pain at the site of an injury long after it has healed

Suffering from chronic pain? Don’t give up hopeChronic pain impacts the lives of many Canadians every day. Thousands wake up every morning to pain, deal with it throughout the day and don’t even escape its clutches as they sleep. Neuropathic pain is a very common chronic condition that poses a challenge for doctors. It's the result of a primary lesion or dysfunction in…

Madness, murder and antidepressant drugs

From Alexandre Bissonnette to Stephen Paddock to Nickolas Cruz to many more, the connections are chilling

Madness, murder and antidepressant drugsThe sentencing hearing for Alexandre Bissonnette (the Quebec man who has pleaded guilty to committing mass murder in a mosque) has been disclosing new details each day about what led up to that tragic event in January 2017. Portions of his initial interrogation have been released on video. Be forewarned: it’s disturbing to watch someone speak…

Making sense of violent attacks

In the aftermath of this week's tragedy in Toronto, how do we come to the grips with such violence? And who do we blame?

Making sense of violent attacksLike most columnists, I’m usually inspired to write on topics that are aligned with my areas of interest. My usual fare is politics, history and economics, but I’ll sometimes write about art, sport, music, and even animation and comic strips. Every once in a while, I’ll pick an issue that doesn’t perfectly fit in one…

MedicAlert a voice for autistics in crisis situations

The MedicAlert Autism Program allows emergency responders to make better decisions to help people in times of need

MedicAlert a voice for autistics in crisis situationsThe silver identification bracelet that indicates an existing condition to first responders has been a valuable tool for decades. In 1953, a teenage girl named Linda Collins cut her finger badly. At the hospital, she received a tetanus shot, had a severe allergic reaction and almost died. After that incident, her parents began attaching a…

When the doctor says sorry

It’s been a dozen years since health-care apology laws came to Canada. Do they work?

When the doctor says sorryMy introduction to the complex and emotional world of adverse events in health care occurred in 2001 when I chaired a committee to review an inquest report into the tragic deaths of 12 infants in a pediatric surgery program in Manitoba. Justice Murray Sinclair, who conducted the inquest, had concluded that at least five of…
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