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Two-drug combo helps adolescents with ADHD, aggression Prescribing both a stimulant and an antipsychotic drug to children with physical aggression and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), along with teaching parents to use behavior management techniques, reduces aggressive and serious behavioral problems in the children, according to researchers.
Concussion tests' marketing outpaces scientific evidence, new review says Computerized neurocognitive testing for concussions is widely used in amateur and professional sports, but little research over the past decade proves its effectiveness, a paper published this month says. The review updates a 2005 look at the available research on computerized neurocognitive testing. The authors still urge caution with their use and point out a need for more peer-reviewed studies.
The incredibly annoying psychology of Christmas holiday regression Over the coming days, thousands of adults will return to their childhood homes and spontaneously turn back into adolescents. What gives?Oliver Burkeman
Increasing personal savings, 'Groundhog Day' way Thinking about time as a cycle of recurring experiences -- a reality Bill Murray's character knows all too well in the movie Groundhog Day -- may help us to put more money away into our savings, according to new research.
Women's perceptions of 'normal' female genitalia may be influenced by exposure to modified images Women's perceptions of what is considered normal and desirable female genitalia may be influenced by exposure to modified images, suggests a new study.
New social enterprise set to lead to significant improvements in stroke rehabilitation A program to help stroke survivors become more involved in their rehabilitation has been launched as a social enterprise. As well as helping patients manage the physical challenges they face, it encourages them to set personal targets to boost their confidence and lets them take charge of their rehabilitation. The initiative, already rolled out across the UK and New Zealand, has the potential to help greater numbers of stroke survivors realize their own resourcefulness and be less reliant on medical and rehab support once they are discharged from hospital.
Meditation Can "˜Debias' the Mind in Only 15 Minutes A new study finds that just 15 minutes mindfulness meditation can help free the mind of biased thinking.→ Jeremy Dean is a psychologist and author of PsyBlog. His latest book is "Making Habits, Breaking Habits: How to Make Changes That Stick"
Eight reasons why you're only 0.0004% in control of your Christmas shopping | Patrick Fagan As you trawl the crowded shopping aisles in search of Christmas presents, your mind is playing tricks on you. And here they areMost of us will already have spent some time this month stuffing our trolleys with sprouts that no one will eat and socks no one will wear. There is perhaps no greater riposte to the idea of rationality than Christmas-buying customs.Yet it's all just harmless fun, isn't it? What's the problem in buying a potato-powered clock for your brother, or a Simpsons tie for Dad? Well, every Christmas, Britons waste about £2bn on unwanted gifts. Things go from kooky to concerning – especially for families with squeezed wallets – when so much money is thrown away.So who's in charge here – us or our brains?The best guess is that, of all the information we process, about 0.0004% is done consciously. Without the ability (or desire) to think every decision through carefully, much of our behaviour is guided from the subconscious with some very simple principles at work.Below are eight such processes through which our brain tricks us into splashing our cash at Christmas.1. SuggestionA study in a US pet store found it could triple its sales of an accessory just by asking customers if they'd like to buy it. So why do we buy at Christmas? Because we're asked to!2. ReciprocityHave you ever wondered why we send Christmas cards, gifts or even the dreaded round robin to people we haven't spoken to in years? Because they send stuff to us. Researchers in the US sent Christmas cards to strangers picked at random – and 80% of them responded. We are innately hardwired to reciprocate: scientists found that reciprocity explains 20% of why monkeys groom, while relatedness only explains 3%. In other words, "I'll scratch your back if you scratch mine" is more important than being a monkey's uncle.3. Social proofAnother reason we buy at Christmas is because everyone else does. The power of the five-star movie and the Amazon review is multiplied by millions when most of the western world is seen to be buying turkeys and tacky gifts.4. MoodChristmas shopping is the ultimate in "retail-tainment". There are Santa's grottos, fun fairy lights and jaunty jingles. It is very literally festive, and we spend more when we're in a good mood. One study even linked mood on Twitter with the health of the stock market.5. PrimingFestive cues act as reminders to buy. Studies show that seeing money makes us more individualistic, thinking about old people makes us walk slower and wearing a lab coat makes us smarter. So, when stores put their decorations up in October, they are nudging us to purchase.6. A time for consumptionThe truth is that many of the festivities we enjoy today predate Christ. We eat and drink more when it's cold and dark, probably because our ancestors needed every calorie to survive. There is an innate drive to consume during short, dark days; and the winter solstice is the shortest and darkest day of all.7. ScarcityScarce things are more valuable: supermarkets can even increase sales by using a "limited time only" sign. When there are only so many Furbies available before the 25th, we feel an extremely powerful urge to go out and buy one.8. EmotionSince we can't consciously process everything, the brain's amygdala acts as a doorman and decides what can and can't "come in". Emotional stuff gets VIP treatment. So Christmas advertising such as the John Lewis TV ad go straight to the "heart" of the brain.So, have a good Christmas and enjoy your festive shopping, but remember: your mind could be playing tricks on you.ChristmasPsychologyPatrick Fagantheguardian.com © 2013 Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies. All rights reserved. | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions | More Feeds
Aspirin to treat aggression? The evidence isn't there yet Suzi Gage: Headlines claiming aspirin can treat intermittent explosive disorder are going beyond the evidence available, and might even put people at riskSuzi Gage
Three Core Anxieties and How to Calm Them If you had nine tested ways to overcome your most persistent anxieties, would you use them?read more
Bullying in academia more prevalent than thought Bullying isn't only a problem that occurs in schools or online among young people. It can happen anywhere to anyone, and a nursing scholar is shedding some light on how it is becoming increasingly common in academia.
In addiction, meditation is helpful when coupled with drug, cognitive therapies A treatment for addiction problems based on meditation-like techniques can be helpful as a supplement to help someone get out of addiction. Scientific and mathematical arguments are given for this in a new paper.
Researchers show power of mirror neuron system in learning, language understanding Anyone who has tried to learn a second language knows how difficult it is to absorb new words and use them to accurately express ideas in a completely new cultural format. Now, research into some of the fundamental ways the brain accepts information and tags it could lead to new, more effective ways for people to learn a second language.
When the Goal of Generosity Looms Larger Is giving $100 to your public radio station on the last day of their pledge drive different from giving $100 to the same station on the first day of the pledge drive? Logically speaking, it shouldn't make a difference; a dollar has the same value whether it's donated early or late. But psychologically speaking, people do seem to perceive a real difference. read more
Brain connections may explain why girls mature faster Scientists have discovered that as the brain re-organizes connections throughout our life, the process begins earlier in girls which may explain why they mature faster during the teenage years.
Suicide widely deemed immoral because it 'taints the soul,' study shows People -- even non-religious people -- make the moral judgment that suicide is wrong not because of any specific harm related to the act, but because they believe it taints the purity of a person's soul, according to a report.
MRI method for measuring MS progression validated New imaging research has demonstrated that a magnetic resonance imaging approach called quantitative susceptibility mapping can be an important tool for diagnosing and tracking the progression of Multiple Sclerosis and other neurological diseases.
Research linking autism symptoms to gut microbes called 'groundbreaking' A new study showing that feeding mice a beneficial type of bacteria can ameliorate autism-like symptoms is "groundbreaking," according to a commentary piece about the research.
Therapy dogs: 'Perfect medicine' to help students survive finals College campuses around the country are bringing in dogs to help stressed students.
Study reveals insight into how brain processes shape, color A new study by neuroscientists is the first to directly compare brain responses to faces and objects with responses to colors. The paper reveals new information about how the brain's inferior temporal (IT) cortex processes information.