research

Fulbright-to-Fulbright: The End

All good things must come to an end. I will admit my “end” was bittersweet, open-ended, and odd. Guess what? That’s ok! Some of you may have ‘the next thing’ lined up all ready to go. Others may not. If you are in this latter category, not to worry, I’ve got you covered! And even if you do have ‘the next thing’ to go to, you may still find the advice relevant.   ONE: Warning: you may or may not finish your project. Another tough thing to deal with when you lean towards having a “Type-A personality” like myself, is dealing with the lack of closure. I tend to seek completeness or sense of conclusion. But you might not get the “typical” closure you expected or desired. You will soon realize you didn’t need it. You will evolve to recognize those small interactions, like engaging with strangers on the street, building relationships with new colleagues abroad, all add up to this larger experience called ‘The Fulbright’. What you gained from the experience is far more than one line on your CV.   TWO: Join the Alumni Association. Participate in the Fulbright Conference. Continue to grow your work, projects, and networks. Take initiative. This was the case before the Fulbright and it is the same case after the Fulbright. You will have to continue to take initiative, seek answers, and...

Fulbright-to-Fulbright: The Middle

The Fulbright scholarship is one of several United States Cultural Exchange Programs whose goal is to improve intercultural relations,  diplomacy, and competence between the people of the United States and other countries through the exchange of persons, knowledge, and skills. It is one of the most prestigious and competitive fellowship programs in the world. Yet, even after being competitively selected, sometimes when you are in country, you can’t see what impact you are having by being there or what you are truly gaining from the experience. It is only when you leave when you realize the impact of your time. But to get you through where you are right now, here are some notes to reassure you that you will be okay, you are doing enough, and you are growing so much even though it may not feel like it.   ONE: First 1-3 months allow yourself to observe. Don’t beat yourself up to try to get things done give yourself the time to observe. Scope the scene. Part of the experience is leaning into the discomfort you are feeling, you will eventually learn to find comfort in discomfort. By embracing these silent challenges, you will find your edges, and finding your edges makes you self-aware. Being self-aware is growth.   TWO: You will get frustrated. You will get resistance. The Fulbright is challenging. And for good reason. If it weren’t challenging, you wouldn’t...

Fulbright-to-Fulbright: The Beginning

You made it! You made it this far. And for what its worth, I am proud of you! After a year of working on the proposal and statement, attending interviews, anticipating the announcement of semi-finalists and then surviving the anxiety-ridden months until finalists are revealed, I remember the day I received the notification. And so will you. Forever. But what I also remember is the one-day of pure serenity, of not having to wait in anticipation or respond just yet. Just to be. That sweet brief silence you experience. Savor it. Because after the silence broke, in flooded the paperwork, the visa applications, the immunization records, the travel insurance, the *fill in your list here*, till I was on the flight and we were ready for take off. Here are my 2 cents to help at the beginning of your journey. Indulge yourself at the pre-departure orientation with all of the scholarly energy in the room. Ask all the questions you can think of and be curious!   ONE: Pack some nice clothes. I know you are trying to be minimalist and realistic at the same time, but a few pieces won’t harm anyone. I ended up buying some formal clothes when I got there for various spontaneous occasions, which is another way to go. At the Fulbright pre-departure orientation, I remember someone suggested bringing perfume or cologne. I...

Fighting Allergies Without Injections?

Where I live in Texas it’s cedar season, which means it’s allergy season. Texas is notorious for its large number of pollen-producing plants including ash, mountain cedar, ragweed, grass and oak… the list goes on and on. When pollination comes around each year, it seems like everyone is coughing, sneezing and congested, with an itchy throat and watery eyes.   Image: Source   To cope with allergies, I’ve heard some pretty creative (though NOT doctor recommended nor evidence-based) solutions including sleeping with a wet washcloth over the face, eating “local” honey to expose the body to pollens or drinking apple cider vinegar. With my friends going to such extremes to fight allergies, you can imagine how excited I was to see a new paper in JAMA reporting on a 3-year study of sublingual immunotherapy for grass pollen allergy sufferers.   Image: Source   Sublingual immunotherapy is being explored as an alternative to injection therapies (or subcutaneous immunotherapy), where small amounts of allergens are injected into patients over the course of months and years to build immunity and prevent the allergic reaction. Allergy shots have been used for nearly 100 years and evidence shows that they are highly effective, especially against many pollen species. It is also more cost-effective than simply treating allergic symptoms. With sublingual immunotherapy, instead of injections, the patient takes either a drop solution or tablet under...

QUIZ: The Link Between Medicine and Music

Aside from the health benefits of listening to your favorite tunes, there are plenty of links between medicine and music. There’s a long history of band names, song themes and product marketing drawing inspiration from medical terms – this quiz tests how much you’ve been paying attention. Are you a music trivia genius? A medical fact repository? A healthy mix of both? Let’s find out! Test your knowledge on music medicine! The Ultimate Medicinal Music Test Which rock duo recorded the bluesy indie hit “Girl, You Have No Faith in Medicine”? What was Robert Palmer suffering from when he sang “Doctor, doctor, give me the news…”? Which dental anaesthetic did alt-rockers Eels think would sooth their soul in 1996? What was the name of the 2009 Marrow track released via a USB shaped like a pill container? Which Gregory Isaacs song shares its name with a popular cold & flu brand? Can you name the 80s band that took their name from the stimulant Dextroamphetamine? In 2017, Dexter Holland gained a PhD for his HIV research; which famous pop-punk band does he sing for? Which beloved rock star famously finished a full set after he fell from the stage and broke his leg in 2015? What percentage of different humans’ brains respond exactly the same way to musical stimulus? Diagnosis: One Hit Wonder Better luck next time. Either you’re not...

The Dark Side of Blood Thinners: What Side Effects Can the Drugs Cause?

What are blood thinners you may ask? They are a type of medication, formulated to keep one’s blood from clotting or prevent an existing clot from increasing in size. In that, it can either be antiplatelet or anticoagulant. Each form of drug works differently from the other. For instance, an antiplatelet, e.g., aspirin, blocks the release of thromboxane. It is a hormone that initiates clumping of the blood, which may result in clotting. On the other hand, anticoagulants, interfere with the production of proteins, in the blood. If you are given blood thinner prescription, you should take caution by sticking to it just as you would to the guidelines of a nursing personal statement. Situations where your doctor may prescribe a blood thinner include: • To reduce the risk of blood clots after a surgery • People with congenital heart defect • Those that suffer from valve or heart diseases • If you had a replacement of a heart valve Side Effects of Blood Thinners When used in the correct dosage, blood thinners are effective in preventing blood from clotting. A blood clot can lead to life-threatening blockages, heart attacks, and even strokes. However, blood thinners also come with side effects and risks, such as: a. Prolonged bleeding If you are taking blood thinners and by an unfortunate event, get wounded, a minor wound, wound would take some time...

How To Avoid Winter Depression

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a type of depression, often known as Winter Depression, that comes and goes in a seasonal pattern. The symptoms are more apparent and tend to be more severe during the winter, often beginning in autumn and lasting throughout the darker months. Some sufferers may feel the effects right up until the weather improves and days become lighter in the spring. The symptoms can include a persistent low mood, lack of energy, loss of interest in every day tasks, sleeping for longer than normal and finding it difficult to get up in the morning, irritability, a tendency to over-eat or under-eat and social withdrawal. Although the symptoms can vary in severity, they can greatly impact day-to-day activities and have a real effect on the sufferer’s life.   Aside from the different forms of counseling such as Mindfulness Therapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, and the use of light therapy to simulate light within your own home and reduce the negative effects that darker days can have. Within everyday routines it is important to maintain a healthy diet and add in elements such as complex carbs and Omega-3 to sustain energy levels and to boost mood. Overall it’s essential for sufferers to remember that they are not alone and there are strategies to take to relive symptoms. Mattress Online have looked into the treatment and prevention of SAD...

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