Rise in Youth Suicide After Netflix’s 13 Reasons Why

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From the 2001 Cerebrum essay, “Suicide in the Young” by Kay Redfield Jamison, Ph.D.  Illustration © Kristina Swarner

On March 31, 2017, a controversial series called, 13 Reasons Why premiered on Netflix. The show tells the story of a young high schooler who commits suicide and leaves behind a series of 13 cassette tapes for the people she held responsible. In the month following the show’s 2017 release, mental health experts, superintendents, and school counselors criticized the series for its glorification of suicide and worried it would lead to an increase in copycat behavior of self-harm among vulnerable individuals. After researchers examined data from the past five years, the show was found to be linked to a spike in suicide rates among US youths aged 10-17.

The National Institutes of Health published the study earlier this week, conducted by researchers at universities, hospitals, and the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). They examined whether the show’s release impacted rates of suicide, based on annual and monthly data on suicide-related deaths of individuals between ages 10 and 64 that occurred between January 1, 2013 and December 31, 2017—a time span encompassing the period before and after the show’s first 13 episodes. Continue reading

Now Open for Submissions: 2019 Brain Awareness Week Video Contest

Are you interested in producing a short video to communicate an aspect of brain science that fascinates you? Does teaming up with a member of the world’s largest organization of scientists and physicians sound exciting? What about the chance to win $1,000 and a trip to Neuroscience 2019 in Chicago?  If you answered “yes” to all of these questions, then the Society for Neuroscience’s Brain Awareness Video Contest is just for you!

Submissions are now open for the 2019 contest, and anyone interested in explaining a neuroscience concept to a lay audience can enter. The Society for Neuroscience offers tips on creating a great video on their site: BrainFacts.org.

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Free Brain Awareness Week Handouts and Resources

Now in its 24th year, Brain Awareness Week  (March 11-17) is rapidly approaching, and this is the time for partners (and everyone) to take advantage of the free downloadable materials we have available on dana.org. Our printable fact sheets and puzzles make great handouts during this week-long celebration of the brain, as well for other neuroscience outreach events throughout the year. Our lesson plans offer ready-made activities for the classroom, to help inspire the next generation of neuroscientists. 

In one of our lesson plans, you can learn about neurotransmission, while also making neurons out of pipe-cleaners!

On our Fact Sheets page, you’ll find information for adults on neuroscience topics including stroke, neurotransmission, the senses, learning and memory, neurodegenerative diseases, mental illness, addiction, and more. Our fact sheets for Kids cover topics such as how the brain works, exercise and the brain, brain development, and addiction. Most of these materials are also available in Spanish, French, Portuguese, Italian, and German.
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Glossary of Brain Science Terms

Do you enjoy reading about the brain, but occasionally run into a neuroscience term you don’t know or that sounds familiar, but you just can’t quite put your finger on its meaning? The Dana Foundation’s Glossary of Key Brain Science Terms is a handy companion for those instances.

brain_glossary_cover_imgWant to know the difference between explicit and implicit memory? We’ve got you covered. Aren’t quite sure what brain plasticity means? We offer a concise explanation.

The Glossary has more than 150 defined terms and can be bookmarked on your computer for easy reference or printed to have on hand.

We hope you find it useful!

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