More Moms Using Laughing Gas During Delivery

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Some of the dentist’s tools are making it into the delivery room as more and more women are choosing nitrous oxide to help them have their baby.

Moms-to-be breathe in the laughing gas each time they have a contraction and it wears off when they stop.

Nitrous oxide has been the go-to drug at birthing centers in Europe and Canada for decades.

It went by the wayside in the U.S. when narcotics and epidurals became more main stream.

Fewer Men Getting Screened for Prostate Cancer

Fewer American men are receiving prostate cancer screenings.

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force issued a final recommendation against using the PSA test to screen for prostate cancer in 2012 saying the harms of the screening outweigh the benefits.

In one study, researchers found the overall rate of PSA testing dropped 50 percent at primary care clinics operated by Oregon Health and Science University.

Urologists behind these studies fear the task force’s recommendation will lead to more men dying of prostate cancer that could have been detected and treated.

A second study found, despite the controversy surrounding the task force recommendations, many Massachusetts doctors believe the panel made the right call.

Researchers surveyed 73 physicians about PSA screening, and about one-third said it did not decrease a person’s chances for dying from prostate cancer.

Study: Yoga May Help Manage Chronic Pain

Yoga practice may not only help your body’s flexibility and strength, it may also affect how your brain processes and manages pain.

Previous research has linked the amount of gray matter in key areas of the cerebral cortex and sub cortex of your brain to the ability to tolerate pain, as in the more gray matter the greater ability to tolerate pain.

At this year’s American Pain Society annual meeting, Dr. Catherine Bushnell presented research which indicates a link between doing yoga and the amount of gray matter found in a person’s brain.

She says while chronic pain, particularly the sort linked to depression, can reduce a person’s amount of gray matter, it appears practicing yoga has the opposite effect on the brain by prompting gray matter growth in the internal cerebral cortex.

She says some gray matter increases in yogis corresponds to how long they’ve been practicing which suggests a causative link between yoga and gray matter increases.

Further research is needed to confirm these results, however the team notes while yoga is not the only course of action to help manage chronic pain, it may be one of the most easily accessible options to try.

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