Monday, June 29, 2009

A New Approach to Orphanages

“Fragile Tanzanian Orphans Get Help After Mothers Die”—New York Times
By Denise Grady
Photographed by Béatrice de Géa for The New York Times
Published: June 24, 2009

This is a great article on efforts focused on the surviving children of dead mothers in Berega, Tanzania. This article provides an example that there are other ways of offering child services that can be effective and healthy aside from traditional orphanages.

“ . . . Most of their mothers died giving birth or soon after — something that, in poor countries, leaves newborns at great risk of dying, too. The children are here just temporarily, to get a start in life so they can return to their villages and their extended families when they are 2 or 3 years old, well past the fragile days of infancy and big enough to digest cow’s milk and eat regular food.

And, in an innovative program designed to meet the infants’ emotional as well as physical needs, many have teenage girls from their extended families living with them at the orphanage . . . “

Friday, June 19, 2009

An Emotional Hair Trigger, Often Misread

An Emotional Hair Trigger, Often Misread--New York Times

By Jane Brody

Published: June 15, 2009

Here's a blurb from the article: "Rather, affected individuals seem to be born with a quick and unduly sensitive emotional trigger. The condition appears to have both genetic and environmental underpinnings. Brain studies have indicated that the emotional center of the nervous system — the amygdala — may be overly reactive, while the part that reins in emotional reactions may be underactive."

I found this to be a really interesting article about the enigma that is Borderline Personality Disorder.

Report on Gene for Depression Is Now Faulted

"Report on Gene for Depression Is Now Faulted" --New York Times


Published: June 16, 2009

The nature vs. nurture debate continues.

Here's a snippet from the article: "One of the most celebrated findings in modern psychiatry — that a single gene helps determine one’s risk of depression in response to a divorce, a lost job or another serious reversal — has not held up to scientific scrutiny, researchers reported Tuesday."