Inception is here: Researchers “talk” to lucid dreamers for the first time

New studies show that some people can hear and respond to questions while dreaming.

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  • Four research teams in four countries independently communicated with sleeping volunteers.
  • A total of 36 participants correctly responded to questions 18.6% of the time.
  • Researchers believe this could open up new avenues for treating anxiety, depression, and trauma.
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Drinking coffee while pregnant alters the fetal brain

A large new study puts caffeine-drinking moms on alert.

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  • A study finds that the brains of children born to mothers who consumed coffee during pregnancy are different.
  • Neuroregulating caffeine easily crosses the placental barrier.
  • The observed differences may be associated with behavioral issues.
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Could playing video games be linked to lower depression rates in kids?

Can playing video games really curb the risk of depression? Experts weigh in.

Previous studies have concluded there are some mental health benefits to playing video games.

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  • A new study published by a UCL researcher has demonstrated how different types of screen time can positively (or negatively) influence young people's mental health.
  • Young boys who played video games daily had lower depression scores at age 14 compared to those who played less than once per month or never.
  • The study also noted that more frequent video game use was consistently associated with fewer depressive symptoms in boys with lower physical activity, but not in those with high physical activity levels.
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BDSM therapy: Are there therapeutic and relational benefits to being submissive?

In-depth research suggests BDSM practitioners can experience altered states of consciousness that can be therapeutic.

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Sex & Relationships
  • BDSM is an acronym encompassing a variety of sexual practices that include: bondage/discipline, dominance/submission, and sadism/masochism. The practice of BDSM usually consists of partners taking on specific roles in which one partner is dominant and the other is submissive.
  • BDSM practitioners (individuals who frequently engage in BDSM play) can experience various mental health benefits from engaging in their scenes.
  • According to the research, subspace is often characterized by the activation of the sympathetic nervous system, the release of epinephrine and endorphins, and a subsequent period of non-verbal, deep relaxation.
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7 dimensions of depression, explained

From baboon hierarchies to the mind-gut connection, the path to defeating depression starts with understanding its causes.

Videos
  • According to the World Health Organization, more than 264 million people suffer from depression. It is the leading cause of disability and, at its worst, can lead to suicide. Unfortunately, depression is often misunderstood or ignored until it is too late.
  • Psychologist Daniel Goleman, comedian Pete Holmes, neuroscientist Emeran Mayer, psychiatrist Drew Ramsey, and more outline several of the social, chemical, and neurological factors that may contribute to the complex disorder and explain why there is not a singular solution or universal "cure" that can alleviate the symptoms.
  • From gaining insight into how the brain-gut connection works and adopting a more Mediterranean diet, to seeking help from medical or spiritual practitioners, depression is a personal battle that requires a personalized strategy to keep it at bay, as well as more research and understanding.
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Brain hemispheres swap memories to help you see the big picture

Scientists observe how the halves of the brain keep us informed about everything everywhere.

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Mind & Brain
  • Each hemisphere of your brain stores memories of the visual input from your opposite side.
  • Your working memory needs information from both hemispheres for you to effectively function.
  • To keep us aware of what's all around us, each hemisphere copies relevant memories to the other side when your gaze shifts.
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