Behind the Headlines

Your guide to the science that makes the news

Call for changes to infant organ donation guidelines

Tuesday Mar 18 2014

Neonatal donation should 'be allowed', doctors urge

“Allow parents to donate the organs of babies who die, urge doctors,” The Guardian reports. Doctors from Great Ormond Street Hospital argue that current UK guidelines regarding organ donations from infants less…

Parental smoking 'ages' children’s arteries

Wednesday Mar 5 2014

Parental smoking 'ages' children’s arteries

'Passive smoking causes lasting damage to children's arteries, prematurely ageing their blood vessels by more than three years' BBC News reports. A Finnish study has found evidence that exposure to secondhand smoke damages children’s arteries…

Childhood nightmares link to psychotic experiences

Monday Mar 3 2014

Frequent child nightmares linked to psychosis

“Regular nightmares in childhood may be an early warning sign of psychotic disorders,” BBC News reports. While many children have the occasional nightmare, a history of regular nightmares could be the sign of something more serious…

Caesareans linked to obesity in offspring

Thursday Feb 27 2014

C-sections linked to obesity in later life

"Babies born by caesarean section are more likely to be obese adults," the Daily Mail reports, after an analysis found a link between caesarean section and obesity in later life. However, a direct link between the two remains unproven…

Is breast milk really best, American study asks

Thursday Feb 27 2014

Breast milk no better than bottled, researcher claims

"Breast milk is 'no better for a baby than bottled milk' and it increases the risk of asthma, expert claims," reports the Mail Online. The news comes from a large US study of children aged 4 to 14 looking at whether breastfeeding is associated with…

Over a million babies a year die on first day of life

Tuesday Feb 25 2014

Over a million babies a year die within 24 hours of birth

"More than a million babies around the world die on the day of their birth yearly," is the sobering news in The Guardian after a report by the charity Save the Children argued that further action is required to combat child mortality…

Fears pregnant women are ignoring folic acid advice

Thursday Feb 20 2014

Fears pregnant women are ignoring folic acid advice

"Women are ignoring expert advice to take folic acid supplements before pregnancy to protect their unborn children," The Guardian reports. The research has prompted calls for flour to be fortified with folic acid…

MPs vote to ban smoking in cars carrying children

Tuesday Feb 11 2014

MPs vote to ban smoking in cars with children

"MPs overwhelmingly back ban on smoking in cars carrying children," reports The Guardian. The media headlines are based on the passing of an amendment to the Children and Families Bill in the House of Commons, which empowers – but does not compel…

Are energy drinks linked to drug use?

Friday Feb 7 2014

US teen energy drinkers may be more likely to use drugs

"Teenagers who consume energy drinks 'are twice as likely to use alcohol and drugs'," the Mail Online warns. Research suggests that US teenagers who regularly consume energy drinks such as Red Bull are more likely to use drugs as well as smoke and drink…

Study highlights child burns dangers in the home

Tuesday Feb 4 2014

Hidden danger of hot drinks & hair straighteners

"Hair straighteners and mugs top child burns list," reports BBC News. The news follows an attempt by researchers to get a more accurate picture of what causes children's burns and scalds, and provide clues about how to prevent them happening in the…

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What is Behind the Headlines?

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