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Americans began to travel less before states started to issue stay-at-home orders, and that may have curbed coronavirus case numbers, a new study suggests.

"Our results strongly support the conclusion that social distancing played a crucial role in the reduction of case growth rates in multiple U.S. counties during March and April, and is therefore an effe...

For those who try to catch up on lost sleep during the weekend, French researchers have some bad news: Once Saturday and Sunday have come and gone, many will find they're still seriously short on sleep.

The finding centered on adults who regularly get only six hours of sleep or less on weekdays. That's far less than the seven to eight hours per night that most people need, said study ...

It was a silent spring.

For long weeks, Americans stayed at home, away from work or school, hoping to curb transmission of the new coronavirus and build capacity at stressed hospitals.

Now, as summer begins, the nation is "reopening" -- but in many states, coronavirus cases are surging once again. For those states and their inhabitants, was it all too soon?

"Can th...

Both cyberbullies and their victims can suffer from symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), a new British study finds.

Cyberbullying is bullying online rather than in person. It's so pervasive that pediatricians should routinely ask their patients about it as part of psychological assessment, the researchers said.

"Parents, teachers a...

Poverty and crowded living conditions increase the spread of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19, a new study suggests.

Researchers reached that conclusion after testing nearly 400 women who gave birth at two hospitals in New York City during the peak of the COVID-19 outbreak.

"Our study shows that neighborhood socioeconomic status and household crowding are strongly assoc...

Not getting enough sleep can kill your mood the morning after, Norwegian researchers report.

"Not in the sense that we have more negative feelings, like being down or depressed," said lead author Ingvild Saksvik-Lehouillier of the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim. "But participants in our study experienced a flattening of emotions when they slept less than ...

Since the early days of the coronavirus pandemic, experts have worried that social distancing and stay-at-home orders would lead to a surge in loneliness. But a new U.S. study suggests it has not played out that way.

In a national survey, researchers found that one month into state lockdowns, Americans were no more likely to feel isolated and lonely than they were pre-COVID-19. In fac...

Ouch! Many of us swear when we get hurt, and a new study shows it actually does help.

Turns out that swearing can significantly increase your pain tolerance -- but only if you use real swear words, and not G-rated versions that mimic them, British researchers report.

For the study, 92 volunteers held their hands in an ice bath. To assess their pain threshold, researc...

It's often said that physical activity rates are too low, but a new report takes a different angle and reveals the good news that exercise prevents nearly 4 million premature deaths a year worldwide.

For the study, the researchers analyzed data from 168 countries on the percentage of people who were getting recommended levels of exercise. The World Health Organization recommends at ...

If you're working from home because of the coronavirus pandemic and expect to keep doing so, you need to be sure your work station is set up properly, an orthopedic specialist says.

You also need to take regular breaks to move around, according to Terrence McGee, a physical therapist at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore.

In an office, many people have ...

A ruptured appendix is one medical emergency that a general surgeon colleague of Dr. Jacqueline Fincher hadn't treated for more than 15 years in their small town of Thomson, Ga.

That's because the signs and symptoms of appendicitis are so well-known that nearly everyone gets to the hospital well before an inflamed appendix has a chance to burst.

B...

Children of mothers with long-term depression have an increased risk of behavioral problems and poor development, researchers say.

The new study included nearly 900 Australian mothers and 978 of their children. Levels of depression were examined in the mothers before, during and after pregnancy. The investigators also analyzed their children's development and behavior.

One i...

Back off, Mom and Dad: Teens who feel their parents are overly controlling may have more difficulty with romantic relationships as adults, a new study suggests.

The study, which followed 184 teens, found that those with domineering parents had a future that was different from their peers: On average, they did not go as far in their education, and they were less likely to be in a roman...

Sex, and lots of it, has long been the primary preoccupation of young adults, but more of them are now going months and years without any intimate encounters.

New research shows that one of three men between the ages of 18 to 24 have not had any sex during the past year, putting to rest all the talk of the "hookup culture."

Men and women aged 25 to 34 in the United States al...

The grosser someone sounds when they cough or sneeze, the more likely you are to suspect they have a contagious infection -- even if it's not true.

That's the upshot of a new study in which participants were asked to judge whether people were -- or weren't -- infected with a communicable disease by the sound of their coughs and sneezes.

On average, they guessed about four ou...

Therapy designed to address mental health issues may also tamp down chronic inflammation, a new review suggests.

In so doing, interventions like behavioral therapy may help to rein in not only anxiety, depression and stress, but also the risk of developing heart disease or cancer, researchers say.

The finding is based on a look at 56 studies that collectively involved more ...

Very sensitive people may owe about half of their heightened feelings to their genes, a British study of twins suggests.

Researchers looked at pairs of identical and fraternal 17-year-old twins to gauge how much differences in sensitivity owed to genes or the environment.

While identical twins share the same genes, fraternal twins don't, so findings among identical twins a...

The latest cancer prevention guidelines may change your typical backyard barbecue: Gone are the hot dogs and booze. In are veggie kebobs and maybe a swim or some badminton.

The American Cancer Society's new cancer prevention recommendations suggest, among other things, adding more physical activity to your days. About 20 minutes a day is the minimum, but 40 minutes or more daily is ...

Video games often stand in the way of exercise and healthy eating among male college students, a new study shows.

"It's important to understand that video games are a risk factor for poor lifestyle habits that may contribute to poor health," said researcher Dustin Moore, a graduate student at the University of New Hampshire.

"We know that habits developed in adolescence a...

A wristband that zaps a key nerve may help quell the uncontrollable tics of Tourette syndrome, according to British researchers.

"We think we've come up with a safe and effective piece of technology that we believe is relatively cheap that will give control over tics to people with Tourette syndrome," said lead researcher Stephen Jackson, a professor of cognitive neuroscience at the ...

Handgun owners are at substantially heightened risk of suicide in the years after buying their first gun, a large new study finds.

The study of more than 26 million California residents found that first-time handgun owners were nearly four times more likely to die by suicide in the coming years versus non-owners.

Their risk of suicide by firearm, specifically, rose to a stri...

Lassie desperately trying to get Timmy out of the well isn't a myth -- your dog really wants to save you, a new study suggests.

"It's a pervasive legend," said researcher Joshua Van Bourg, a graduate student in psychology at Arizona State University in Tempe. "The difficult challenge is figuring out why they do it."

To tease out an answer, Van Bourg's team tried an ...

As if the childhood obesity epidemic isn't bad enough, new research warns that over one million more American boys and girls stand to become obese if coronavirus-related school closures continue through the end of the year.

The culprit: a steep rise in sedentary behavior following the spring shutdown of school and afterschool sports and activities across all 50 states.

"If s...

Fatter wallets lead to fatter people, according to a new study.

Researchers examined the link between nations' wealth and their obesity rates. They discovered citizens get plumper as their country gets richer.

"As most people currently live in low- and middle-income countries with rising incomes, our findings underscore the urgent need for effective policies to break -- or a...

When bike-sharing services open in cities, more people start to commute by bicycle and take public transit, new research shows.

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, bike commuting had increased by 20% in cities where bike-share systems were introduced, according to study author Dafeng Xu, assistant professor of public policy and governance at the University of Washington in Seattle.

When kids and teens chafe under COVID-19 quarantine, how can parents stop the meltdowns and misbehavior?

Start with understanding: Young people miss their friends and their freedom. Younger kids might respond by throwing tantrums. Teens might isolate themselves, ignore social distancing rules or sneak out to see friends.

To curb negative behavior, experts from Penn State Childre...

People with physically demanding jobs take more sick leave. They also have higher unemployment rates and shorter work lives, a new Danish study finds.

"This study showed that high physical work demands are a marked risk factor for a shortened expected working life and increased years of sickness absence and unemployment," study co-author Lars Andersen and colleagues wrote. Andersen is...

Grief is touching the lives of countless Americans as the COVID-19 death toll mounts.

The death of a family member or close friend can be among the most difficult things you'll have to deal with, so the American Psychological Association outlines ways of coping with that loss -- whether or not it is coronavirus-related.

Talking about the death with friends or others can help...

Autism may be a risk factor for eating disorders, a new study suggests.

Previous research has shown that 20% to 30% of adults with eating disorders have autism, and the same is true for between 3% and 10% of children and teens. But it wasn't clear if autism developed before eating disorders or vice versa.

To find out, researchers assessed autism traits in nea...

In a finding that illustrates how distracted driving laws are saving lives, researchers report that car crash deaths among teens plunged by one-third during a period when the number of U.S. states with such laws on the books tripled.

"We found that states which had primary enforced distracted driving laws had lower fatal crashes involving 16- to 19-year-old drivers and passengers," sa...

Researchers may have gained new insights into a mystifying condition that causes children's behavior to change so severely and abruptly, it can be like they woke up as a different person.

The condition is known as pediatric acute-onset neuropsychiatric syndrome, or PANS. It is diagnosed when a child has a dramatic -- sometimes overnight -- onset of psychiatric and neurological symptom...

Most Americans voluntarily stayed at home during the early days of the COVID-19 tsunami, before states began issuing official "shelter-in-place" orders, new research indicates.

Why? Because statewide emergency declarations coupled with news -- of first infections, first fatalities and school closures -- were motivation enough to get folks to stay home. This was more motivating than qu...

The coronavirus pandemic has families spending plenty of "quality time" together, but living under the same roof 24 hours a day can tax relationships, an expert in child development says.

This is "a completely new and unique situation," said Murray Krantz, a professor in the College of Human Sciences at Florida State University, in Tallahassee.

Luckily, there are ways to red...

High school students who have early start times are more likely to show up late or cut school entirely, a new study finds.

As schools across the United States think about reopening, they might want to bear this in mind.

"The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that high schools begin class after 8:30 a.m., but we know that most schools start much earlier," said resear...

When the President of the United States offers medical advice, many Americans will heed the call. Never mind that the recommendations may be unfounded and potentially dangerous.

That's the cautionary finding of an analysis published April 29 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

Researchers examined Google search patterns following President Donald Trump's public embrace of the...

With most Americans weeks into sheltering-in-place, couples are in a situation probably none ever planned for: Being in each other's faces all day, every day -- with no clear end in sight.

Experts say the new closeness is likely playing out in many ways: Some couples will find they enjoy the extra time with each other; others will be counting the days until they can be with a human ot...

Whenever societies are placed under stress, conspiracy theories blaming this or that nefarious agent for secretly fomenting the threat inevitably arise.

It's no different during the current coronavirus crisis.

Some of the evidence-free hoaxes circulating now include theories that the virus is a military bioweapon created in a Chinese lab; that it was made and even patented ...

Young adults may be waiting too long to seek help for eating disorders, a new study suggests.

Researchers surveyed 300 young adults, ages 18-25, in Australia. They found the majority had eating, weight or body shape concerns.

"Concerningly, only a minority of people with eating disorder symptoms had sought professional help and few believed they needed help despite the probl...

A woman overcome by toxic fumes from her kitchen sink is rushed to the hospital; a toddler is treated in the ER after swallowing hand sanitizer.

As Americans' obsession with disinfecting their homes against coronavirus rises, so are the number of poisoning emergencies like these, a new government report finds.

"Exposures to cleaners and disinfectants reported to NPDS [the Na...

Doctors are increasingly worried that people are mistaking stay-at-home orders to mean they should avoid emergency medical care -- including for serious lung diseases.

People with chronic lung conditions, such as emphysema and moderate to severe asthma, are among those at higher risk of becoming seriously ill with COVID-19. And medical experts have been urging them to be vigilant abou...

Letting a baby watch a smartphone, tablet or TV at 12 months increases the odds the child will develop autism-like symptoms during the next year, new research suggests.

On the other hand, if parents spent active play time with their child every day, the odds of autism-like symptoms decreased.

"At 12 months, watching TV or DVDs was associated with more autism symptoms a...

Beware of your fridge, pantry and couch during the coronavirus pandemic.

Being cooped up at home with easy access to food can lead to overeating. Couple that with routine housekeeping, working from home, homeschooling your kids and tending to loved ones, and it's a sure-fire recipe for weight gain, experts at the University of Georgia in Athens warn.

"These tasks have been a...

Today's youngsters are as socially skilled as previous generations, despite concerns about their heavy use of technology, like smartphones and social media, new research shows.

The researchers compared teacher and parent evaluations of more than 19,000 U.S. children who started kindergarten in 1998 -- six years before Facebook appeared -- with more than 13,000 who began school in 2010...

The coronavirus hits older people and those with chronic medical conditions hardest. But many of these folks didn't take the virus seriously as the outbreak took off in the United States, a new study finds.

Before stay-in-place orders were announced, investigators called nearly 700 people in the Chicago area who were part of five U.S. National Institutes of Health studies. Most were ...

Stay-at-home orders and other social distancing measures have kept people from going out in four key U.S. cities, likely blunting the spread of COVID-19, federal health officials report.

The number of people leaving their homes fell gradually but persistently as officials closed schools, restaurants and bars in New York City, New Orleans, San Francisco and Seattle, according to a stud...

You've been told over and over not to touch your face during the coronavirus pandemic, but that's easier said than done.

Most people touch their face up to 23 times an hour and don't even realize they're doing it, a psychologist says.

"Typically, we'll do something like shaking someone's hand and then failing to wash our hands properly, followed by touching our faces and t...

In the age of TV marathons, sticking to a consistent bedtime can be a challenge, but new research shows it could help reduce your risk of heart problems.

For the study, the researchers assessed the link between a regular bedtime and resting heart rate, and found that people who went to bed later or earlier than normal had a higher resting heart rate.

"We already know an incr...

Mindfulness may explain why many older people feel their life has gotten better with age, a new study suggests.

Mindfulness is being aware of your experiences and paying attention to the present moment in a purposeful, receptive and non-judgmental way, and it can help reduce stress and promote good mental health, according to the Flinders University researchers.

The study a...

The COVID-19 pandemic has spawned a wave of scammers looking to take advantage of older adults, experts warn.

Social distancing has created an easy playground for "fraudulent telemarketers and internet scammers," said Karen Roberto, a gerontology expert from Virginia Tech in Blacksburg.

"Elder financial abuse costs older Americans more than $3 billion annually, but we know t...

It takes multiple measures of social distancing to slow the spread of the new coronavirus, a study from Singapore concludes.

That finding is based on a computer model of a simulated setting in Singapore. Coronavirus cases are on the rise there, but as of March 23, schools remained open and workplace distancing was only recommended, not national policy.

Researchers concluded ...

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