Cool the hype around genetics and health care

We are a long way from identifying definitive biomarkers to illness and personalized gene therapies are likely generations away

Cool the hype around genetics and health careBy Nicole Letourneau and Suzanne Tough University of Calgary Genetics will save the day – that’s the message you see constantly in the media and even in academic literature. But it's a message that can distract us from providing quality care now. Newspapers herald breakthroughs in finding genetic biomarkers for autism. Magazines trumpet finding a…

Body image issues begin early

How we can help our children be comfortable and happy in their own skin

Body image issues begin earlyMy five-and-a-half-year-old granddaughter has an eye for fashion. She has her favourite outfits and she is fond of accessories. She likes to wear beads like Granny and my earrings are a source of great interest. It’s all very cute and sweet, but I wonder if I should compliment her less frequently on her attire. I…

Diabetes may double risk of developing depression

Two of the primary risk factors for the disease are obesity and lack of exercise

Diabetes may double risk of developing depressionDiabetes is one of the leading health problems affecting North America today and is rapidly on the rise. It is also well known that this disease can cause serious health complications such as vision loss and amputation as well as life-threatening problems like stroke, heart disease and kidney failure. Indeed, diabetes, which affects the body’s…

Using tech to connect with patients

Chris Nedelmann of Copeman Healthcare Centre talks about bridging the gap between practitioners and patients with a virtual care app

Using tech to connect with patientsChris Nedelmann is CEO of Copeman Healthcare Centre. What is Copeman and its history? Nedelmann: We started in Vancouver 14 years ago. We operate four advanced primary care facilities in Western Canada – two of those are in Vancouver, one on the North Shore and one downtown. We have a new facility in Calgary but the…

The war on drugs must be fought at addiction’s social roots

The answer to addiction will not be found in the industries of incarceration and prescription

The war on drugs must be fought at addiction’s social rootsOn Oct. 21, pharmaceutical opioid distributors McKesson Corp., AmerisourceBergen and Cardinal Health, and drug manufacturer Teva Pharmaceuticals agreed to a US$260-million settlement just hours before opening arguments were scheduled to begin in the first opioid-era federal lawsuit in Ohio. This is the first of hundreds of similar lawsuits filed by cities, counties, Native American tribes…

Giving people the tools they need to overcome challenges

Shelly Qualtieri talks about her business as a counsellor, coach and facilitator

Giving people the tools they need to overcome challengesShelly Qualtieri is a counsellor, coach and facilitator with Shelly Qualtieri – Counselling & Coaching  Tell me what you do and what your business is about? Qualtieri: I’m the entrepreneur and heart and soul behind Shelly Qualtieri – Counselling & Coaching. I’m a counsellor and a registered social worker (RSW). The core of my business…

The search for the transformed life

Well-being educator Deena Cottingham talks about how stress is at the root of chronic conditions and what to do about it

The search for the transformed lifeDeena Cottingham is a well-being educator and coach. Tell me about what you do? Cottingham: I empower people who are seeking a fuller sense of well-being and fulfilment in their lives. There are many facets that need acknowledging in order to unblock the flow of that natural way of being. Blocks may show up as…

Mental health therapies should be fully funded by medicare

For every $1 invested in psychological services for depression, there’s a $2 return to society

Mental health therapies should be fully funded by medicareToo often goes untold are the stories of thousands of people who die by suicide every year in Canada – our friends, relatives, colleagues and neighbours. What’s also not well documented is how frequently many of them may have struggled with depression, often for months or even years, and how many may have lacked adequate…

Mental health therapies should be fully funded by medicare

For every $1 invested in psychological services for depression, there’s a $2 return to society

Mental health therapies should be fully funded by medicareToo often goes untold are the stories of thousands of people who die by suicide every year in Canada – our friends, relatives, colleagues and neighbours. What’s also not well documented is how frequently many of them may have struggled with depression, often for months or even years, and how many may have lacked adequate…

Genetics strongly influence our predisposition to mental illness

It is becoming increasingly clear that our genes influence everything from our personality traits to specific psychiatric disorders

Genetics strongly influence our predisposition to mental illnessNature has been pitted against nurture for centuries. People have always pondered the question of whether human behaviour is primarily dictated by genetic hard-wiring or by our experiences and environmental factors. The debate has lasted so long because we know comparatively little about the functioning of the human brain. As a result, disorders of the…

Understanding what causes stress and how to handle it

Ask yourself (and maybe someone close to you) the following questions to get a better understanding of what causes it and how to handle it

Understanding what causes stress and how to handle itStress afflicts us all and is a common precursor to mental distress. While there is plenty of good advice about how to manage stress, I don’t think we spend enough time talking about how to anticipate, and avoid, it. It starts with self-awareness. What is your stress profile? How each of us responds to stress…

Clinical trials important to ensure patient safety

All new treatments used in Canada and the U.S. must go through a rigorous clinical trial process before approval

Clinical trials important to ensure patient safetyIn this age of fast advancing technology and almost-daily medical discoveries, researching new treatments with clinical trials is of critical importance in assuring their safety and effectiveness. It is important to learn how well new treatments work and also to compare them with established techniques and medications to learn where there are advantages and disadvantages…

How to build a strong self-image

Your self-image plays a major part in how you live your life. It determines the quality of your life and, often, how successful you will be

How to build a strong self-imageYour self-image plays a major part in how you live your life. It determines the quality of your life and, often, how successful you will be. It also sets the tone, rhythm and meter for all your relationships, both personal and professional. According to psychotherapists, a strong self-image can be the foundation for achieving a…

How to spot the narcissists among us

Narcissists have an exaggerated sense of self-importance, and a preoccupation with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty

How to spot the narcissists among us  Is narcissism actually a disorder or is it just a description of someone who happens to be more self-absorbed than most? We all know people who seem to focus almost solely on themselves with little interest in the feelings or contributions of others. But where does selfishness end and narcissistic personality disorder begin? Narcissistic…

Siblings who become caretakers often lack adequate support

Individuals with developmental disabilities live longer than ever and that means the responsibility for care is shifting to siblings

Siblings who become caretakers often lack adequate supportA combination of better medical care and good lives in the community mean longer life expectancies for individuals with a developmental disability. That’s good news. But many are outliving their parents, who have taken care of them over their lifetimes. Once parents are no longer able to provide the same level of support or care,…
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