PTSD Treatment: Symptoms or Souls?

Richard Geiger,Virginia,veterans,health,veteran health,PTSD,veteran treatment,American Sniper,Veterans Affairs,VA,NCCIH,Josephine Briggs

After the showing of “American Sniper,” the audience around me at our local theater—perhaps like at yours—remained silent. Long minutes passed before people quietly rose and shuffled out. I think we were sharing heartbreak. We were sharing an urgency for dominion over combat trauma called post-traumatic stress syndrome (PTSD). The number of affected veterans and families is growing. And, as many dedicated care-givers work to find solutions, one fact is emerging: one method of treatment Continue Reading

Women’s History: Freedom from Mental Slavery

Richard Geiger,Women's History: Freedom from Mental Slavery,Mary Baker Eddy,Virginia,Christian Science,

March is Women's History Month, celebrating this year's theme of “Weaving the Stories of Women's Lives.” Nineteenth and twentieth century women are conspicuous in weaving a fabric of human freedom—a freedom that continues to lead human progress today. Lucretia Mott helped end the slavery of African Americans. Margaret Fuller, Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony laid groundwork for women's right to vote. We could not imagine continuing social progress today without their Continue Reading

Equal Status, Equal Health

@Glowimages RTI01216.

Equal health for all, regardless of social status! It's a noble call today in response to a widening social status gap in our country. The Affordable Care Act is one effort to try to answer it. The premise certainly seems reasonable: One's health is determined by his physical access to modern medical services. The rich have access; the less rich have less access, or none. Health advantage: the rich, right? Not so fast. There's more to status and health than access to medical services, Continue Reading

Ebola–We Can Make It a Fairer Fight

Ebola--We Can Make It a Fairer Fight,Richard Geiger,Virginia

Time Magazine has rightfully named all of the men and women fighting Ebola as “Person of the Year.” In every battle, those underdogs who win are often the ones who have found a way, even amid insurmountable odds, to make the fight more fair. Ebola is no different. Amid the calls for a larger Western response that funds and sends medical staff, equipment, and drugs, it’s clear that something more is needed to level the battle field. Perhaps that something is mental, rather than physical. Continue Reading

Spiritual Care: Cracking Mental Health’s “Incurable” Barrier

@Glowimages MCG01835.

The state of Virginia is mobilizing to improve the delivery of mental health services. At the same time, and much more quietly, a new model of treatment is emerging among the field's professional ranks—the model of spiritual care. Consider: Before the year 2000, spiritual care was not generally considered proven or scientific, though a few studies suggested some potential. Since 2000, a surge of major studies have concluded that some form of spiritual care is definitely an effective Continue Reading

Taking Charge of Your Own Health: Monitor Body or Thought?

What do you get when you strap 700 health app monitors to your body? If you're Chris Dancy of Denver, Colorado, you get the title “Most Quantified Human” and you now know what your body is doing--your heart rate, blood pressure, etc. On any given day, Dancy wears and monitors dozens of body devices, from a Pebble smartwatch and Google Glass to a BodyMedia armband and Blue heart rate monitor. He eats, drinks, sleeps, and so on, according to the data. He rejoices in taking charge of his Continue Reading

Re-thinking Science?

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We thought we knew what “science” meant. Until 2013, that is. Last year, “science” was the word with the greatest increase in lookups in—a 176% increase over 2012, in fact. And it remained a top lookup throughout 2013. It's not a new word, so why the sudden interest? Perhaps it's because, as Merriam-Webster's Editor-at-Large, Peter Sokolowski suggests, “A wide variety of discussions centered on science this year, from climate change to educational policy. We saw heated Continue Reading