diseases and disorders

Women, older people and those with lower incomes are more likely to use sleep medications, study finds, despite potential health harms

CNN — Millions of Americans say they regularly turn to medication to help them fall asleep or stay asleep, a practice that experts say can be dangerous to their health. A new study found that roughly 8 percent of U.S. adults report taking sleep medication every day or most days, with use more common among …

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CDC identifies possible safety issue with Pfizer’s updated Covid-19 vaccine, but says people should still be boosted

CNN — The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said on Friday that there is a possible safety issue with the bivalent Covid-19 vaccine made by Pfizer and BioNTech, but that it is unlikely to pose a real risk. The agency said it continues to recommend people stay up to date with their Covid-19 …

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How worried should people be about the XBB.1.5 variant of Covid? Our medical analyst explains

CNN — A new variant of Covid-19, XBB.1.5, is spreading rapidly in the United States. In December 2022, the proportion of new Covid-19 infections attributable to this branch of Omicron increased from 4% to 18%, according to a January 6 announcement from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and is projected to to …

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Sitting too much is bad for your health, but offsetting the effects is easy, a study shows

CNN — Sure, you’ve heard about the dangers of sitting all day, but with most jobs, there’s not much you can do about it, right? Not according to a new study looking at the effects of prolonged sitting. Five minutes of light walking every half hour can help alleviate some of the increased risk that …

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Mental health-related emergency department visits and return visits are on the rise among children, study finds

CNN — Children’s mental health-related emergency room visits and hospital readmissions are “rapidly increasing,” a new study shows. Between 2015 and 2020, mental health visits to pediatric emergency rooms increased by 8 percent annually, with about 13 percent of those patients returning within six months, according to a study published Tuesday in the journal JAMA …

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Leaked notes from Chinese health officials estimate 250 million Covid-19 infections in December: reports

Hong Kong CNN — Almost 250 million people in China may have caught Covid-19 in the first 20 days of December, according to an internal estimate by the nation’s top health officials, Bloomberg News and the Financial Times reported on Friday. If true, the estimate — which CNN could not independently confirm — would represent …

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New York mayor says NYPD and first responders may unwittingly engage people in mental health crisis

new York CNN — New York City Mayor Eric Adams on Tuesday ordered first responders to enforce a state law that allows them to potentially involuntarily commit people experiencing a mental health crisis as part of an effort to address concerns about homelessness and crime. Adams said it’s a myth that first responders can only …

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China’s Covid protests: Top health officials deflect blame while defending controversial policy

CNN — China’s top health officials vowed to adjust Covid-19 control measures to reduce their impact on people’s lives, while deflecting blame for public disillusionment with the policy itself, in their first press briefing since protests erupted against the strict policy of the government for zero Covid over the weekend. Lockdowns to curb the spread …

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The Covid-19 public health emergency has been extended in the US

CNN — The Biden administration on Friday extended the Covid-19 public health emergency for another three months. US Secretary of Health and Human Services Xavier Becerra officially renewed the declaration, extending it until October 13, 2022. The emergency declaration has been in effect since January 2020, and the latest renewal comes as the Omicron BA.5 …

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Study finds ‘huge’ increase in children going to emergency room with suicidal thoughts

Editor’s note: If you or someone you know is struggling with suicidal thoughts or mental health issues, please call the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline or visit the helpline’s website. CNN — There has been a steady rise in the number of children being seen in emergency departments for suicidal thoughts, according to a new …

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