Medicine wheel
Health & Health Care

What We Can Learn from the Medicine Wheel

Curve Lake Cultural Centre While we're used to looking through a Western lens at health and wellness, I think there can be a great deal of value in looking at other ways of understanding. The medicine wheel is used by certain North American Indigenous peoples to tie together culture, traditional knowledge, health, and healing. Traditionally,… Continue reading What We Can Learn from the Medicine Wheel

How does your local health system work? Icons representing different aspects of health care
Health & Health Care

How Does Your Local Health Care System Work?

i was talking recently with Luftmentsch of Vision of the Night about the health care systems in. the UK and Canada, and I thought it would be interesting to take a look at what a patient scenario might look like in particular health care system. Health care systems overview First, let's take a quick look… Continue reading How Does Your Local Health Care System Work?

Does adrenal fatigue exist? - diagram of HPA axis
Health & Health Care, Science, Pseudoscience, & Media Literacy

Is Adrenal Fatigue Real?

The term adrenal fatigue was first used by chiropractor James Wilson in 1998, and became popular with a book he published in 2001.  I've written before about some of the quacky dabbling of chiropractors outside the neck and back pain issues we commonly associate them with.  You can probably guess from that alone where I'm… Continue reading Is Adrenal Fatigue Real?

nurse administering intramuscular injection
Health & Health Care, Science, Pseudoscience, & Media Literacy

How Vaccines Work (and What That Means for COVID-19)

While COVID-19 is caused by a novel coronavirus, and there's still much to be learned about the virus and the illness, coming up with a vaccine doesn't mean totally reinventing the wheel.  How vaccines work is based on knowledge about how the immune system works, and the immune system doesn't abruptly change just because a… Continue reading How Vaccines Work (and What That Means for COVID-19)

Health & Health Care, Science, Pseudoscience, & Media Literacy

What’s This Curve We’re Flattening?

In the age of COVID-19, everyone keeps talking about flattening or bending the curve.  But what the heck kind of curve are they talking about? Epidemiology looks at the patterns of diseases across populations.  This is a fundamental part of public health.  Epidemiological curves, also known as epidemic curves or epi curves, are used to… Continue reading What’s This Curve We’re Flattening?

Spanish influenza epidemic poster from 1918
Health & Health Care, Science, Pseudoscience, & Media Literacy

Spanish Influenza: The Last Big Pandemic

Alberta Board of Health/Public Domain It was 102 years ago that the last major global pandemic happened, known as Spanish influenza, and in many ways, COVID-19 pales in comparison. The Spanish influenza pandemic that began in 1918 didn't actually originate in Spain; that's just where it was first publicly reported.  Its origins are unclear, although… Continue reading Spanish Influenza: The Last Big Pandemic

Tips on how to spot fake news
Health & Health Care, Science, Pseudoscience, & Media Literacy

Separating Reality from Fake Health News

HoIFLA, Wikimedia Commons During this global pandemic, there's a lot of wild and wacky news out there in the world.  This infographic from the International Federation of Library Association and Institutions gives some handy tips for separating the facts from the crap.  In this post, I'll go through those tips with respect to spotting fake… Continue reading Separating Reality from Fake Health News

Coronavirus COVID-19
Health & Health Care

What the Experts Have to Say About COVID-19

Note: This post has not been updated since March and thus some of the information contained here may not reflect the current state of knowledge.  Please refer to the World Health Organization or your local public health agencies for the most up-to-date information on COVID-19. With far too many people ignoring public health advice around… Continue reading What the Experts Have to Say About COVID-19

chiropractic spine logos
Health & Health Care, Science, Pseudoscience, & Media Literacy

Is Chiropractic What It Claims To Be?

Spine Logo vector created by roserodionova - http://www.freepik.com Let's say your back hurts.  You go to a chiropractor, over a few visits they crack a few joints, and that's all she wrote, right?  That's certainly what I used to think about chiropractic.  The thing is, though, there's some modern back cracking practice built on some… Continue reading Is Chiropractic What It Claims To Be?

Health & Health Care

Gate Control Theory of Pain

What does the gate control theory of pain have to do with a mental health blog?  Well, co-occurring mental illness and chronic pain are remarkably common.  For example, among people with fibromyalgia, over 50% experience depression.  The rates of anxiety disorders are also over 50%.  People with depression and anxiety disorders are also at increased… Continue reading Gate Control Theory of Pain