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NHM Health Focus:
Brain Health

March 2009

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Brain Basics:
 – Brain Basics: Know Your Brain (NINDS)
 – Brain Backgrounders (SFN)
 – Brain Facts (SfN)
 – Biomedical Informatics Research Network (NIH)
 – National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
 – Basics of Brain Imaging (NIDA)
 – International Brain Research Organization (IBRO)

How People Learn
 – How People Learn: Brain, Mind, Experience, and School (NAP)
 – Inside the Teenage Brain (PBS)

Brain Health for Students
 – The Brain is the Boss (KidsHealth, Nemours)
 – The Brain and Nervous System (TeensHealth, Nemours)
 – Neuroscience for Kids (Eric Chudler, U. of Washington)
 – ThinkFirst For Kids (National Injury Prevention Foundation)
 – Brainy Kids (Dana Foundation)
 – Preventing Accidental Injury (Safe Kids USA)

Brain Disorders, Injuries and Disease
 – Traumatic Brain Injuries (MedlinePlus) (NLM)
 – Brain Diseases (MedlinePlus) (NLM)
 – BrainWeb and Brain Information (Dana Foundation)

 – National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
 – Addiction is a Brain Disease (NAS)

March is Brain Injury Awareness Month. The focus of the 2009 campaign sponsored by the Brain Injury Association of America is Sports and Concussions, specifically youth sports.

In addition, Brain Awareness Week (March 16-22, 2009) is an international effort organized by the Dana Alliance for Brain Initiatives to advance public awareness about the progress and benefits of brain research, the results of which have wide ranging impact.

The impact of brain injury and illness is great.

  • Each year at least 1.4 million people sustain a traumatic brain injury. Of these, about 50,000 die, 235,000 are hospitalized, and 1.1 million are treated and released from an emergency department. (NCIPC)
  • An estimated 26.2 percent of Americans ages 18 and older – about 1 in 4 adults – suffer from a diagnosable mental disorder in a given year. (NLM)
  • As many as 1 in every 33 children may have depression; in teens, that number may be as high as 1 in 8. (KidsHealth)
  • In 2004, the cost of stroke was estimated at $53.6 billion, with a mean lifetime cost estimated at $140,048. Effective prevention remains the best treatment for reducing the burden of stroke. (American Heart Association)

"Today, one out of five Americans suffers from a brain-related disease or disorder, ranging from cocaine addiction to learning disabilities, from Alzheimer's disease to spinal cord injuries. Recently, significant advances have been made in brain-related research, including 'imaging' techniques, that allow scientists to study actual functioning brains; genetic-based research; and the development of new drugs." The Dana Alliance for Brain Initiatives

The Dana BrainWeb has links to validated information on brain research topics from sleep, pain and memory, to the developing and aging brain, to injuries, addiction, and more.

Access Excellence @ the National Health Museum has these resources related to brain health:

Let's Collaborate: Science Seminar - Another Day, Another Neuron - On Becoming a Neuroscientist
Activities Exchange: Classic Collection - How We See: The First Steps of Human Vision
Activities Exchange: Activities-to-Go - Travel Brochure of the Body Systems
Resource Center: Career Center - Interview with Eric Lander
What's News: Science Updates - Sizing Up the Brain
Health Headquarters: Question of the Week - Depression and School
Health Headquarters: Question of the Week - Amusement Park Safety
What's News: Science Updates: - Nobel to Brain Researchers

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