Behind the Headlines

Your guide to the science that makes the news

Worrying about work out-of-hours 'may be bad for the heart'

Monday Feb 20 2017

"Taking work home can be deadly," the Daily Mail warns. A small study of London-based office workers found those who reported being frequently troubled by work-related issues had patterns of heart activity associated with stress and anxiety…

Could brain scans be used to screen for autism?

Friday Feb 17 2017

"Brain scans could identify babies most at risk of developing autism, study shows," The Guardian reports. Researchers think that looking for distinct changes in infant brains could identify some children with autistic spectrum disorder (ASD)…

Anxiety and depression linked to increased cancer death risk

Thursday Jan 26 2017

"Depression linked to higher chance of dying from cancer," The Independent reports. Analysis of UK data found a link between mental distress and cancer mortality, which remained even after other factors such as smoking were taken into account…

UK survey finds around 1 in 13 women report pain during sex

Thursday Jan 26 2017

"Nearly 1 in 10 British women [7.5%] finds sex painful, according to a big study," BBC News reports. The study's results highlight the arguably neglected issue of pain during sex – dyspareunia – which some women may be too…

Youngest children in class 'more likely to be given ADHD drugs'

Monday Jan 23 2017

"Youngest children in class more likely to get ADHD medication, study says," The Guardian reports. The results of an Australian study have caused concerns that, in some cases, immature behaviour may be misinterpreted as evidence of a behavioural disorder…

Eating disorders in middle-aged women 'common'

Wednesday Jan 18 2017

"Eating disorders…affect a small but substantial number of women in their 40s and 50s," BBC News reports. While often regarded as a "disease of the young", a new survey suggests 3.6% of middle-aged women in the UK are affected by an eating disorder…

A pattern of brain activity may link stress to heart attacks

Thursday Jan 12 2017

"The effect of constant stress on a deep-lying region of the brain explains the increased risk of heart attack, a study in The Lancet suggests," BBC News reports. Research suggests that stress stimulates the amygdala…

Want to feel happier? Take a break from Facebook

Friday Dec 23 2016

"Facebook lurking makes you miserable, says study," BBC News reports after a Danish study found regular users who took a week-long break from the social media site reported increased wellbeing…

Brain tests may predict children at risk of becoming 'social burdens'

Tuesday Dec 13 2016

"Brain tests predict children's futures," BBC News reports. A study found that childhood factors such as low IQ, parental neglect and poor self-control were strongly associated with "socially costly" outcomes in adulthood, including smoking and obesity…

Some psychotic episodes 'may be triggered by immune disorders'

Friday Dec 9 2016

"Sufferers of psychotic illnesses 'may have treatable immune disorder'," The Independent reports. Researchers from Oxford University found around 9% of people presenting with psychotic symptoms also had signs of immune dysfunction…

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