web analytics
January 16, 2017 / 18 Tevet, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘behavior’

Haifa Researchers say Cannabis Oil May Help Epileptic Children

Wednesday, December 14th, 2016

by Ilana Messika Researchers at the Neurology Unit at the Rambam Medical Center in Haifa say trials conducted with an oil made from cannabis showed positive results for children suffering from epilepsy.

Dr. Aharon Schif, a specialist in pediatric neurology at the Ruth Rappaport Children’s Hospital, the Center’s pediatric wing, and head of pediatric neurology Dr. Sarit Ravid said that several children of various ages suffering from epilepsy responded well to treatment with the experimental oil. The children had already undergone conventional drug therapy.

Medical cannabis oil droplets are specifically enriched with Cannabidiol (CBD), one of the chemical compounds identified with cannabis but different from the one existing in regular marijuana. For this reason, the cannabis does not act like an intoxicating drug.

“Researchers currently believe that cannabis decreases neural transmission during periods of intense cellular activity like in an epileptic seizure,” explained Drs. Schif and Ravid to Tazpit Press Service (TPS).

“Preliminary results indicate that medical cannabis can be used to improve behavior, alertness, language, communication, motor skills and sleep in epilepsy patients,” Schif added.

The Epilepsy Foundation defines epilepsy as “a chronic disorder, the hallmark of which is recurrent, unprovoked seizures.” Electrical events in the brain will produce those symptoms affecting any part of the body. Different people suffer a variety of types of seizures.

According to Rambam’s statistics, epilepsy affects approximately 0.7% of children living in Israel, about a quarter of whom are considered “seriously ill,” do not respond to drugs and suffer from frequent seizures of very high intensity. Schif and David said that approximately a third of epilepsy patients suffer from drug-resistant epilepsy, meaning a failure to stop seizures by at least two medications. The efficacy of other medications is also limited, which is why there is a great interest in developing new treatments.

“The general treatment options for the treatment of epilepsy are medications, adequate protein (or ketogenic) diet, vagus nerve stimulation surgery,” they said.

The use of cannabis to treat epilepsy was already described in early 19th century. But only in the last three years have the medical community, parent groups and the media expressed growing interest in its administration cases of intractable epilepsy in children.

The cannabis treatment was approved by the Israeli Ministry of Health about two years ago, if the patient meets certain requirements, and only for certain hospitals. Rambam is the only hospital to provide the treatment in Northern Israel.

Despite such promising results, however, Schif and Ravid pointed out that the trial is still considered controversial because the long-term side affects are unknown remaining uncertainties

“We should emphasize however, that medical reports on the positive effect of medical cannabis for epilepsy are still preliminary. Further clinical trials are warranted. There is also not enough evidence on the long-term side effects of cannabis in pediatric population,” Drs Schif and Ravid said.

TPS / Tazpit News Agency

Iran Gets Points for Good Behavior in Exceeding Heavy Water Quota

Friday, November 11th, 2016

It turns out that John Kerry’s State Dept. grades Iran on a curve, as can be seen from an exchange between State Department spokesperson Mark Toner and a reporter on Wednesday. The reporter pointed out Wednesday’s IAEA report which found Iran to be in violation of the heavy water stockpile provision, for a second time.

Can Iran still be considered to be adhering to its commitments?

Toner confirmed that, “indeed, the IAEA has observed that Iran has slightly exceeded its 130 metric ton heavy water stockpile limit under the JCPOA by 100 kilograms,” but stressed that “that’s about one-tenth of a metric ton,” which doesn’t sound so bad, until one does the math and realizes it’s about 220 pounds of heavy water.

Heavy water is used as a moderating agent in reactors fueled by natural uranium, so the amount of heavy water Iran has been creating should be more than enough to scare us.

All of which was lost on Toner, who actually told this reporter: “It’s important to note that Iran made no effort to hide what it was doing from the IAEA. During the course of its ongoing heavy water production, Iran produced a little more heavy water than permitted but is now taking steps to address the issue by shipping the excess quantity out of the country, we expect in the coming days. So the IAEA flagged us. Iran made no attempt to hide it, and they’re taking immediate steps to address it.”

Yes, world peace has been secured for 100 years… The sheer absurdity of Toner’s comments was not lost on the pesky reporter, and the following harsh back & forth ensued:

Reporter:  And that’s supposed to make – that’s supposed to be a relief, that they made no effort to hide it?

Toner:  No, I just wanted to – I said —

Reporter:  So it’s okay if they blatantly violate it and don’t try and to – don’t try to cover it up?  I don’t get it.

Toner:  Well, Matt —

Reporter:  It’s a violation, is it not?

Toner:  Well, look, it is – so they exceeded the limits.  They acknowledged it.

Reporter:  Right.  That’s a violation, is it not?

Toner:  Well, again, it’s – but they’re addressing it.  I mean, this is something that —

Reporter:  But did they – so you don’t think – they violated the deal and you can’t – and you won’t say that they violated the deal?  I don’t —

Toner:  So they – again, yes, they exceeded the allowable amount of heavy water that they were permitted.

Reporter:  Is that or is that not a violation of the agreement?  Whether or not they’re taking steps to address it, they still violated it, didn’t they?

Toner:  I’m not sure whether that constitutes a formal violation. I’d have to look into that, to be honest with you. I mean, they certainly exceeded, again, what their – their allowable amount of heavy water.  Whether that constitutes, again, a formal violation of JCPOA writ large, I’m not certain about that.  Again, what’s important here is that this was detected, it was acknowledged, and they’re taking steps to address it.

Thank God, only two more months of this remain…

David Israel

The Truth About Syria

Monday, August 26th, 2013

Originally published at Rubin Reports.

If you are interested in reading more about Syria, you’re welcome to read my book The Truth About Syria online or download it for free.

WHY SYRIA MATTERS

“It is my pleasure to meet with you in the new Middle East,” said Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in a speech to the Syrian Journalists’ Union on August 15, 2006.1 But Bashar’s new Middle East was neither the one hoped for by many since Iraqi President Saddam Hussein’s 1991 defeat in Kuwait nor expected when Bashar himself ascended the throne in 2000. Actually, it was not even new at all but rather a reversion, often in remarkable detail, to the Middle East of the 1950s through the 1980s. The Arab world, now accompanied by Iran, was re-embracing an era that was an unmitigated disaster for itself and extolling ideas and strategies which had repeatedly led it to catastrophe.

No Arab state had more to do with this important and tragic turnabout than does Syria, this development’s main architect and beneficiary. Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and other Arab states wanted quiet; Iraq needed peace to rebuild itself. Even Libyan dictator Muammar Qadhafi, pressed by sanctions and scared by his Iraqi counterpart Saddam’s fate, was on his good behavior. Only Syria remained as a source of instability and radicalism.

Thus, a small state with a modest economy became the fulcrum on which the Middle East shifted and which, in turn, shook the globe. Indeed, Bashar’s version of the new Middle East may well persist for an entire generation. Does this make Bashar a fool or a genius? That cannot be determined directly. What can be said is that his policy is good for the regime, simultaneously brilliant and disastrous for Syria, and just plain disastrous for many others.

To understand Syria’s special feature, it is best to heed the all-important insight of a Lebanese-American scholar, Fouad Ajami: “Syria’s main asset, in contrast to Egypt’s preeminence and Saudi wealth, is its capacity for mischief.”

In the final analysis, the aforementioned mischief was in the service of regime maintenance, the all-encompassing cause and goal of the Syrian government’s behavior. Demagoguery, not the delivery of material benefits, is the basis of its power.

Why have those who govern Syria followed such a pattern for more than six decades under almost a dozen different regimes? The answer: Precisely because the country is a weak one in many respects. Aside from lacking Egypt’s power and Saudi Arabia’s money, it also falls short on internal coherence due to its diverse population and minority-dominated regime. In Iraq, Saddam Hussein used repression, ideology, and foreign adventures to hold together a system dominated by Sunni Arab Muslims who were only one-fifth of the population. In Syria, even more intense measures were needed to sustain an Alawite regime that rules based on a community only half as large proportionately.

To survive, then, the regime needs transcendent slogans and passionate external conflicts that help make its problems disappear. Arabism and, in more recent years, Islamism, are its solution. In this light, Syria’s rulers can claim to be not a rather inept, corrupt dictatorship but the rightful leaders of all Arabs and the champions of all Muslims. Their battle cries are very effectively used to justify oppression at home and aggression abroad. No other country in the world throws around the word “imperialism” more in describing foreign adversaries, and yet no other state on the globe follows a more classical imperialist policy.

In broad terms, this approach is followed by most, if not all, Arab governments, but Syria offers the purest example of the system. As for the consequences, two basic principles are useful to keep in mind:

1. It often seemed as if the worse Syria behaved, the better its regime does. Syrian leaders do not accept the Western view that moderation, compromise, an open economy, and peace are always better. When Syria acts radical, up to a point of course, it maximizes its main asset—causing trouble—which cancels out all its other weaknesses. As a dictatorship, militancy provided an excuse for tight controls and domestic popularity through its demagoguery.

2. Success for the regime and state means disaster for the people, society, and economy. The regime prospers by keeping Syrians believing that the battle against America and Israel, not freedom and prosperity, should be their top priority. External threats are used to justify internal repression. The state’s control over the economy means lower living standards for most while simultaneously preserving a rich ruling elite with lots of money to give to its supporters.

Barry Rubin

Bullying Must End!

Friday, August 9th, 2013

Dear Dr. Yael:

My husband and I are having a problem with our seven-year-old daughter. She is having difficulty with socializing and was bullied this past year by another girl. She is a very sweet girl, and it is hard for her to respond when someone is mean to her. I don’t know how to help her and it is breaking my heart to see her going more and more into a shell. I spoke to her teachers and they tried to be more on top of the situation, but I am concerned about this coming school year. My daughter is already starting to dread going back to school because she is nervous that the bullying will continue. What can we do to help her avoid another difficult year?

A Heartbroken Mother

Dear Heartbroken Mother:

It is very frustrating to watch a child being bullied and to not know what you can do to help. The most important thing to do is to empower your daughter and help build her confidence. This can be done in several ways.

Does your daughter have any other girlfriends that would help her stand up to this bully? Getting other girls to help your daughter may make her feel more confident (and less hurt) by the bullying girl. And the girl who is bullying her may be much less likely to continue the bullying if she sees that it will not be tolerated by others. Research has shown that the most effective way to stop bullying is to get the bystanders to become proactive. Even though the other kids who are standing around may not be outwardly contributing to the bullying, they are in essence contributing to it because they are not standing up for the victim, thus allowing the bullying to continue. Someone proactive will defend the victim and not let the bully get away with demeaning anyone or making anyone feel bad. If even just a few girls decide that they will not let bullying occur, they can make a huge difference. Remember that in numbers there is strength. While I am not advocating for the children in your daughter’s class be mean to the bully, they must be assertive and make it clear that bullying behavior will not be tolerated in their school.

It is imperative that you make every effort to raise your daughter’s confidence level so she can have the self-belief to answer the bully and not look hurt while doing so – a very challenging feat. It would be helpful to come up with some witty comebacks and then role-play. Once your daughter feels comfortable with various responses, she will be more likely to use them when needed. Practicing the situation beforehand will help her feel more secure and less scared. Make sure to distinguish between nasty and aggressive remarks on one hand and confident and assertive remarks on the other. While a mean remark may sting the bully and make your daughter feel better in the short term, it will not be effective in the long term – as no one truly feels better when he or she makes someone else feel bad.

There is a huge difference between standing up for oneself and retaliating against others. Retaliation will likely continue the negative cycle and may even get your daughter in trouble. Defending oneself is a sign of self-assertion and strength, not meanness. Appropriate comebacks to bullying include “I’m surprised that such a nice girl like you would speak that way” or “I’m really sorry you feel that way.”

It may also be beneficial to get your daughter involved in some kind of chesed project and/or extracurricular activity. When people give to others, they feel useful and better about themselves. Many young girls and boys assist Tomchei Shabbos and other tzedakah organizations.

Another idea is to have your daughter aid a mother with several young children. These are great ways to do something positive on behalf of the frum community while your daughter strives to raise her sense of self. Getting involved in a specialty class (e.g. art, gymnastics, or dance) will also help her succeed in other areas and improve her self-esteem. These classes can also be great places to make new friends who share similar interests. Any kind of active class will pump your daughter with adrenaline, making her consistently feel better.

Try to minimize criticizing your daughter while maximizing your compliments and words of positive reinforcement. Seek opportunities to praise her for things she accomplishes and for the way she acts. Point out her special qualities in meaningful and sincere ways. For example, instead of saying “great job,” say “I really liked how you handled yourself when your little brother hit you. I could tell that you were upset, but you controlled yourself and acted like a true bas Yisrael. You really are a special girl!” This demonstrates that you were paying attention to her actions, and your praise lets her know that what she did was exemplary. She is then able to internalize the praise because it is meaningful.

If none of these ideas help your daughter, please seek professional help in order to build your daughter’s confidence and give her tools to use in stressful social situations. Never forget that “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure!” Getting your daughter help now can save you from years of future therapy. Hatzlachah with your trying situation!

Note to parents whose children are bullying others: Get your children professional help to rectify their abusive behavior. Bullying is a serious problem for the victims and perpetrators alike. It is not something that children generally grow out of. Most children who bully feel insecure about themselves and in order to feel better feel the need to put others down. But in reality this creates a negative cycle that makes the bullies feel increasingly worse because being mean to others does not make them feel better about themselves.

Help them express what is bothering them so they can stop taking out their pain on other children. Now is the time to assets them in gaining more effective coping skills, thereby improving their middos. If they don’t change for the better at a young age, they may have difficulties in the future regarding issues like job security, getting married, and staying married.

Bullying is unacceptable and it’s easier for a bully to change his or her behavior at a young age. So please help your precious children learn to socialize appropriately. In the end they will be nicer to others – while feeling better about themselves.

Dr. Yael Respler

In Hebrew: ‘Behavior’

Sunday, May 5th, 2013

הִתְנַהֲגוּת To behave is to conduct oneself in a certain way. It is therefore not surprising that the Hebrew word for to behave comes from the Biblical root meaning conduct or drive נ.ה.ג (n.h.g).

To behave is לְהִתְנַהֵג (leh-heet-nah-HEG), a reflexive-intensive התפעל verb.

And following the verbal-noun pattern, behavior is הִתְנַהֲגוּת (heet-nah-hah-GOOT).

For example, הַהִתְנַהֲגוּת שֶׁל הַיָּלְדָה הִיא לֹא מְקֻבֶּלֶתthe girl’s behavior is unacceptable – (hah-heet-nah-hah-GOOT shel hah-yahl-DAH hee loh meh-koo-BEH-let).

Some other words of the same root are מִנְהָגcustom or tradition (meen-HAHG),לִנְהוֹגto drive (leen-HOHG) and לְהַנְהִיגto lead (leh-hahn-HEEG).

Visit Ktzat Ivrit.

Ami Steinberger

Self Esteem And Its Impact On Marriage

Thursday, December 6th, 2012

Self esteem is one of the most important factors influencing human behavior. Despite what some people believe, self esteem can be a critical issue in marriage, where unresolved identity issues from childhood can place unwanted stress on a relationship.

Low self esteem can be very painful and difficult to overcome. Our sense of self is something we come into the world with and it follows us through life like a shadow. If we lose it, we are lost. If we have we it, we can face all of our trials and tribulations and maintain our sense of satisfaction and emotional well-being. Most parents understand the role self esteem plays in childhood. When children grow up, we teach them how to take losses in stride and how to win and lose with grace. We teach children that it’s them, and not just their grades, that matter.

Once childhood passes, unresolved self esteem issues can last for a lifetime. For example, in marriages where one person suffers from low self esteem, both parties may feel that their spouse never properly fulfills their emotional needs. And, where both suffer from feelings of low self esteem, there may be perpetual disappointment in the relationship.

Expectations make this issue even more complex. Couples tend to enter marriage with the belief that any hurt they may have experienced in the past will be healed by their spouse. They may also hope that their spouse will somehow make them feel good about themselves and nurture their self image.

A couple once came to talk with me about difficulties they were having in their marriage. The issue burning in their minds was the negative behavior of their teenage son. The father found it difficult to parent his rebellious teenager with confidence, and the wife had given up hope in her children and in her marriage as well. Overall, they were both visibly angry at one another, withdrawn and disappointed in their relationship.

I sensed there was more hiding below the surface. The husband, it turned out, had lost his mother at a young age and was raised by his father, who was too preoccupied with their financial survival to pay much attention to his son’s emotional needs. The wife had also had a very difficult childhood. She grew up with a father who had a temper and would often yell at her without reason. Early on, she had learned how to adapt and “disappear” from the house when he was around.

Years later, these two individuals would continue their childhood patterns and be caught in an endless cycle of emotional turmoil. Here is how the self esteem issues spiraled out of control: whenever he sensed that his wife was not responsive to his emotional needs, he would start yelling at her. His wife, who was mistreated by her father and had learned how to avoid conflict, would physically and emotionally withdraw from him and try to hide. This would intensify his feelings of rejection and make him even angrier.

To break the cycle, I suggested that both work on their self esteem. They could begin by exploring how their childhood traumas were now influencing their present-day behavior. Through becoming aware of these inner issues, they would be better equipped to respond to their deeper emotional wounds and start healing their feelings of rejection and neglect.

Here is a list of childhood family issues that may be interrupting your ability to have a happy marriage as an adult:

* Divorce
* Learning disabilities
* Lack of friendships
* Illness
* Physical or emotional abuse
* A sick parent
* A death in the family

Children who are exposed to conflict at home (which tends to coincide with a negative and hostile relationship between the parents) are more at risk for aggression, internalizing by withdrawing, depressive symptoms, and feelings of low self esteem.

Also, an adult who lost a parent when he or she was a child may feel a sense of loss that can carry on for a lifetime. Losing someone at a young age can diminish self-confidence, create feelings of despair, and leave individuals with feelings of anxiety and uncertainty.

Part of the healing process is to become aware of these inner issues and to begin discussing them with one’s spouse. Talking about them in an honest and open way can help them become aware of each other’s feelings of abandonment. Here are some tips on how to nourish each other’s level of self esteem:

Rabbi Daniel Schonbuch

Rivlin: Knesset Must Regulate Politicians’ Ability to Switch Parties

Thursday, December 6th, 2012

Speaker of the Knesset Reuven Rivlin (Likud) criticized the practice of switching between parties by various Members of Knesset and Knesset candidates , calling on the next Knesset to regulate such behavior, Israel’s Channel 10 website reported.

“We need to ask ourselves what is transpiring in our political culture,” Rivlin said. “To my regret, what was in the past an exception, has in recent days become routine and accepted behavior.”

“The next Knesset must answer to the constitutional and democratic question: can a candidate that competed in the primaries of one party join soon after in another party?”

The latest candidate to switch parties was former Labor Chairman Amir Peretz who just resigned from Labor and will be joining Tzipi Livni’s party, “The Movement,” as the second candidate on that party’s list after Livni herself.

Peretz claims that one of the reasons for his leaving the Labor party was that its new chairman, Shelly Yachamovitch has not publicly ruled out the possibility of joining a government with Benjamin Netanyahu.

Many members of Kadima have either resigned or have also left their party for Livni’s new party in recent days.

In the Israeli political system, to be elected to the Knesset a candidate must win a secure spot in a party slate or start a new party himself.  Running with a party on a spot below the number of seats polls show that party will receive is political suicide.

Many polls show that Kadima will not pass the voting threshold and will not have any seats in the next Knesset.

Jewish Press Staff

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/rivlin-knesset-must-regulate-politicians-ability-to-switch-parties/2012/12/06/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: