Brain fitness training: measuring psycho-social dimensions of brain health

Dr. William Bailey’s comments about a study that he and his colleague Jean Turner are conducting on the impacts of BrainHQ training on symptoms of depression, self-efficacy and related psycho-social dimensions in older individuals is worth special mention. We welcome these two University of Arkansas scientists into our community, and look forward to their study…

Building a tree-house

I spent much of the last two weekends working with my two sons-in-law constructing a tree-house for their children (Diane and my grandchildren). It’s a beauty. You enter tree-house paradise via a ladder (still under construction) that wraps around a large oak tree to deliver the kid to a notch that opens out onto a…

Two additional risk factors for PTSD (one surprising; one mundane)

Being ambidextrous is pretty useful as a member of your Little League team, but it turns out to be not quite so positive if your brain is later faced with traumatic experiences. Rather surprisingly, a study of 2,490 individuals exposed to combat in Vietnam revealed that an ambidextrous individual is about twice as likely to…

Why not fix it BEFORE it breaks?

An article in the New York Times published about two weeks ago mirrored by an article in the AARP Bulletin bumptiously extolled the wonderful energies in the pharmaceutical industry directed toward medical strategies for more effectively treating or ‘curing’ Alzheimers Disease. The NYT science writer focussed on Wyeth Laboratories, because they are putting down most…

Racing through life!

Race car driving was the last thing Marilyn Kays expected to be doing at the age of 63. Her late husband called her ‘grandma’ because of her pokey driving. After completing BrainHQ, where she made great individual progress, Marilyn felt more confident than ever before. She noticed that she remembered things like her bank account…

A brain fitness graduate comes home

A couple of weeks ago, Jerry Emmons shared his story with Posit Science. It seems that the 84-year-old was spending much of each day re-living old, painful World War II memories. He had been the only survivor in his crew and the horror was haunting him more and more. “Post-traumatic stress disorder,” said his doctor.…

How to get PTSD. Twice. Worse.

I just read disturbing comments by a highly respected University of California doc Karen Seal [who screens and treats returning veterans from Iraq or Afghanistan at San Francisco’s famous Ft. Miley Veterans Administration Hospital, one of our premier VA Research Hospitals] about the redeployment of young soldiers treated for PTSD and other neurological and psychatric…

EVERYONE doesn’t feel the pain

Neil Pearson wrote an inspirational and informative comment from a soldier on the front lines of pain therapy about my last entry [which described another neurological confirmation of an empathetic response actually engaging the pain centers of the brain, when a subject witnessed realistic (fake) videos of inflicted pain]. If pain is an issue for…