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Mental, physical and contagious diseases dominate the headlines

Cheap flights blamed for massive rise in skin cancer rates

New research has shown that rates of the skin cancer, melanoma, have risen by 45% over the course of a decade.

Melanoma is the fifth most common cause of cancer in the UK and is often caused by repeated and unprotected skin exposure to UV rays from sunlight.

Cancer research UK has blamed package holidays and cheap flights for the rise in rates, saying that more people can now afford to head to the sun more frequently. The charity also added that better awareness of the disease has led to more people seeking a diagnosis.

Read more on the SkyNews.

Origins of anorexia are in both the mind and body

Researchers at Kings College London have shown that the eating disorder, anorexia nervosa, is caused by a complex mix of both mental and physical factors.

The study suggests that certain genetic mutations associated with the disease alter the way fats and sugars are processed so that it is easier for individuals to starve their bodies.

Read more in BBC News.

Ebola crisis in the Democratic Republic of Congo declared an international crisis

This week, the World Health Organization has declared the Ebola crisis in the Democratic Republic of Congo a “public health emergency of international concern”.

Since August 2018, more than 2,500 people have been infected and more than 1,600 people have died.

The PHEIC emergency provision is the highest level of alarm the WHO can sound and has only been used four times previously.

The WHO has emphasised for months that it has insufficient money to tackle the problem, with a shortfall of $54m.

Read more in the BBC News.

Child mental health unit referrals up nearly 50%

There has been a near 50% increase in referrals to child mental health units from pupils aged 11 and under, over the past three years.

Head teachers from around the country have raised concerns that the number of serious mental health episodes is on the rise in their schools and that some primary school pupils are being repeatedly rejected for mental health support.

Read more on the BBCNews.


Quote of the week

Harvey Whiteford, professor of population mental health at the University of Queensland:

“In the physical health world, you are what you eat. In the mental health world, you are what you think.”

Read more in The Guardian.


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