Thursday, February 27, 2014

Painless Needles?!

Avoiding the doctors office when I know I need to get a shot of some sort is typical behavior for this girl. The uneasy feeling of a large needle going into my arm just doesn't seem to sit well with me!  But wait, there may be a bright side to my dilemma and anyone else who feels my pain.

The Bite
Japanese scientists have discovered an almost painless needle. Yes, I said painless! With the use of the normally considered pestering mosquito, a mechanical engineer named Seiji Aoyagi and his team have created a semi-painless hypodermic needle. They have based this needle on the proboscis of the mosquito.  You are probably thinking that a mosquito bite does hurt.  But the truth is, the bite is painless. What you feel is the itching due to the bacteria mixing with your blood after the feeding of the mosquito is complete.  The jagged edge of the proboscis is the reason for the painless bite. It only affects a small surface area of the nerves, therefore causing little to no pain.  Aoyagi has created a similar jagged needle to have the same affect on human patients.  The normal smooth needle tends to affect a larger surface area of the nerves, therefore causing more pain.  Aoyagi plans to further his research in hopes to perfect the almost painless needle to be completely patient friendly, and painless!  I may now respect my mosquito bites a little bit more, since they seem to be doing more good than evil!

To read the full story and learn more about how the research was conducted here is the full article: Mosquito inspires near-painless hypodermic needle

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Fun Fact


Having trouble falling asleep? That seems to be the case for me too. Random google searches about science fun facts are how I find myself killing time.

My first late night fun fact deals with the ocean tides.  The Moon and the Sun are responsible for the low and high tides.  Due to gravitational attraction, the moon's position above us causing a high tide makes sense, right? But we still experience low tides! The Moon not only has a gravitational affect on the water, but the land too. That means the part of the Earth closest to the Moon is actually pulled towards it, creating the low tide.  The Earth becomes egg shaped at that time! I learn something new everyday, or should I say night.

The soothing sound of the ocean often helps me sleep. Google searching ocean sounds at the moment!

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Your Brain on Music

Music Keeps me sane!
One thing I do on a daily basis is listen to music. I know many people around the world are exactly like me in regards to their love for music. I often say "music is the one thing that keeps me sane". That quote is relevant more than ever to me now.  

Music on the brain
While searching for some new musical artists to listen to, I came across a news story NPR presented about the human response to music.  Research on how music affects the human brain has taken place for years now, but more current research being conducted deals with music being used as a healing tool.  Some stroke patients are using a technique known as "melodic intonation therapy" to allow the undamaged parts of the brain to take over for the damaged areas through music coaxing, with the end goal to help them regain speaking abilities.  Scientists believe that more neurological diseases may have hope for future healing power through something so simple as music. 


Music World Wide
Music is everywhere around us. My generation especially seems to be fixated on the latest music and artists.  Bet you would have never guessed to think that your favorite song could have the potential to one day "keep you sane"!  Read the full NPR new report here The Power Of Music To Affect The Brain