Mock Up Explainer Video Script

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This is a mock-up/unofficial explainer video script for the website diabetes.co.uk, If you would like me to write an explainer video script for your product, email me at tziyad.tz@gmail.com

Learning that you or your loved ones have diabetes can be scary and confusing. http://www.diabetes.co.uk/ has extensive information on every aspect of type 1 & 2 diabetes from the basics of understanding diabetes and how to manage it to over 3000 healthy recipes and extensive advice and support on a wide range of topics.

Join the Diabetes forum and connect with 220,373 people where you can ask questions and share your experiences with like-minded  people. You can also download the forum app on your iPhone or Android phone and access all those great features on the move

Download free guides and watch videos from experts. Need to know how to check your blood sugar levels? Worried about complications like ‘Hyphos’? Want to know what rights and benefits you have as a diabetic? We’ve got you covered.

Having diabetes doesn’t have to be a nightmare. With the right support you can still live a happy and enjoyable life.Sign up today and get a free member pack to help get you started.

The Superhero Technique: A Hack To Get Your Kids To Behave In The Shops

You’ve got kids, you know how it is. You take ’em to the shops and it all starts from there. The girls throw tantrums and the boys get all goofy. They wander off as soon as your backs turned. They sneak stuff into the trolley. They drop subtle hints like “I’m not asking for anything today”. Thing is you only went for a bottle of milk but they cajole you into getting some kind of reward which is OK sometimes, just not all the time!

I’m a curmudgeon at the best of times but what I’ve found is my snarky comments and Dad tantrums don’t really work. They still don’t listen and they’re gonna make a fuss like it or not. That is, until I stumbled across a technique through my sophisticated psycho-evaluation of my children’s cognitive behaviour (just joking!). No, what really happened is I blurted out in desperation “Who wants to be a superhero?” and it worked! At least for now anyway. I had to keep checking they were still there, absolute silence, I kid you not.

Yes, it seems my kids attach real value to being labelled superheros. It was enough to put their wandering feet and far-reaching hands in check. I enjoyed a stress-free trip to the supermarket, got my milk and in the end, the kids got a little something too. They just didn’t have to wrestle it out of me this time. Long live super kids!!!

How The NHS Saved My Life

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The NHS Saved My Life

I’m so glad we have a national health service in the UK. The fact is they saved my life. From my early 20s I was struggling to sleep, my weight was piling on, I was in trouble.

Obstructive/Acute Sleep Apnoea

The sleepless nights got so bad I would fall asleep in the day uncontrollably. I spilt hot tea on myself and fell out of bed numerous times often hitting my head on the bedside cabinet. In 2009 I was diagnosed with acute sleep apnoea. The tests showed I was waking up 60 times an hour. My sleep was no sleep at all. I felt exhausted all the time and had to endure constant mockery from so called friends and colleagues for my falling asleep in public and snoring loudly. It was far more serious than that though. Lack of sleep can lead to a number of health risks like diabetes,rapid weight gain and potential stroke or heart attack. The NHS put me on CPAP treatment. I was given a machine with an oxygen mask that pushes air into my throat to keep the airway open and allow me a good nights sleep. In my most recent check up I found I was hardly waking up at all during the night, the treatment had been successful

Diabetes

in 2011 I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, my blood sugar had shot up to dangerous double figures. The dangers of poorly managed diabetes are pretty terrifying, amputated limbs, teeth falling out, blindness, strokes, and heart attacks.

Truth is, until recently, I wasn’t managing my diabetes very well. I thought I was, I took my medicine, went for walks but didn’t really take much care of my diet. Thankfully, my regular blood tests at the GP flagged up a meeting with the nurse. It took a week or so of monitoring my blood sugar 4-5 times a day plus cutting out high sugar/high carb foods for me to realise the mistakes I was making and what I need to do going forward. All this was thanks to a visit to the nurse otherwise I would have carried on like before and who knows?

What would Life Be Like Without Our NHS?

I often imagine what it was like before 1945 in the UK when medical care was a luxury only the rich could afford. Or what it’s like now for over half the world below the poverty line with no access to medical care. I wonder what I would do if I lived in the United States and had to pay insurance fees for healthcare. Take this quote from the World health organization as something to reflect on:

Approximately 1.2 billion people in the world live in extreme poverty (less than one dollar per day). Poverty creates ill-health because it forces people to live in environments that make them sick, without decent shelter, clean water or adequate sanitation.

http://www.who.int/hdp/poverty/en/

I have no doubt the NHS saved my life as it saves countless others daily. I am aware that there is a lot of debate about the cost of the NHS right now but that’s another discussion for another time. When viewing things through a social wellbeing lens rather than an economic one, it’s easy to see the real value of this great institution. If any doubt remains, try imagining life without it.

I admit that that illness in the first world reflects the more affluent lifestyle people enjoy. Unlike developing countries where poverty, starvation and poor sanitation are the major causes for illness and death, our problems are more about poor choices in what and how much we eat and consume in general. Issues like morbid obesity need to be tackled, I should know. I actively try and lose weight and I encourage anyone else in my position to do the same for the sake of your own health. I just don’t believe shrinking and privatising the NHS would put an end to our modern illnesses like obesity and drug addiction for example. I believe we are all human beings, prone to error. When we get sick, we should get help and support because that’s the humane thing to do. Going back to that day I walked in the surgery and got life changing advice on managing my diabetes, I ask myself, what if I didn’t have that surgery to go to?

Sign this petition to save the NHS https://secure.38degrees.org.uk/index.php/pages/522/

Support the campaign to keep our NHS Public http://keepournhspublic.com/

Awesome Blogs Roundup: 5 Articles That Will Get You Thinking

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In today’s roundup of interesting web content, we learn how to read a book a week, how people become ideas, and that intelligence and ration aren’t necessarily the same. We also get some good tips on learning faster and that old chestnut, beating procrastination…

How To Read A Book A Week (The Verge)

When I actually find a book I like, I can’t put it down but honestly, months go by sometimes where I’m not reading something new. Good tips in this article include the simple act of leaving a book of choice where you like to relax.

The Difference Between Rationality And Intelligence (NY Times)

Research has shown that intelligent people can make irrational decisions based on previous bias. The good news is that with training we can learn to become more rational. Could someone offer this training to our politicians?

When A Person Becomes An Idea (A Life Of Productivity)

A very agreeable piece from alifeofproductivity.com/, the phrase ‘larger than life’ came to mind whilst reading this. We turn on the news first thing in the morning to stories of politicians and celebs and so it goes on throughout the day. The truth is, they are all mundane human beings like you and I. We know who Hilary Clinton is but we don’t what a day in the life of Hilary Clinton looks like. Personally, I don’t believe that not knowing such people intimately detracts from the often terrible decisions they make but I do accept that, yes, they are human.

5 Habits That Help You Learn Faster (Shopify)

A decent short read on the Shopify blog with some genuinely useful tidbits. I try to apply these in my daily routine. What I find especially useful is forcing myself to learn new things. I’ve been the worst of procrastinators in my time. It’s a dark place I don’t wish to go back to. Another important tool is taking notes, something I’ve recently rediscovered, and by taking notes I mean writing them down if you can. It works wonders

Beat procrastination (Zapier)

Upon reading the above title, you may think ‘easier said than done’ and you’d be right. I suffer from all the pitfalls mentioned in this Zapier blog. The fear of hard work and brain drain kills me, I don’t know where to start, and I lack motivation. But, funnily enough, I found I was doing one of the suggested ‘hacks’ in this article already. I stack my to-do list each day. Inevitably, things end up carrying over to the next day but I usually manage to get a fair bit done and feel a bit better about it.

If you liked this roundup, give it a share on your socials. Have a great day!

5 articles on the web that will broaden your horizons

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Learn how to do business and help others, improve your memory, value time more, read more books, and stop losing it at your kids! Check out these five inspirational and educational posts below…….

Helping Others Is Your Most Valuable Offering- Sujan Patel

A good read for content marketers, social sellers and Entrepreneurs, you can grow your business through the not so revolutionary act of being kind and helping others. Not rocket science yet how many of us act on it? Read this great article for some practical pointers on doing business with a big heart.

The Science of Memory: Top 10 Proven Techniques to Remember More and Learn Faster (Zapier)

Drawing from the teachings of Dr. Barbara Oakley & Prof. Terrence Sejnowski on the excellent free MOOC course ‘Learning How To Learn: Powerful mental tools to help you master tough subjects’, the Zapier blog extracts 10 scientifically proven ways to improve your memory. My favourite memory improving tips? Writing stuff down and spaced repetition.

Why you feel busy all the time (when you’re actually not) (BBC)

Yep, I’m guilty of this one but it turns out we might just have more time than we think we do….

5 ways to read more books, and then read them more productively ( A Life of Productivity)

I really need to read more and the tips here never even occurred to me until now. My favourite tip? Underlining the best parts of the book you’re reading to revisit them, genius.

Positive Parenting Concepts For Ditching Frustration

One for the angry Dads and mad Mums!!!! But seriously, raising kids ain’t easy. You may have read ‘parenting hacks’ like these before but there’s no harm in a quick reminder. My favourite tip? Take some time out, be kind to yourself as they say. If you need a few minutes away from your constantly bored kids, take them.

Hope you enjoyed this round up of posts, give it a share on Facebook, Twitter and/or your social media platform of choice

 

Podcast Review: All In The Mind ‘A Stroke Of Reality’

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All In The Mind: An Absolutely Must Listen Neuroscience Podcast

‘All In The Mind’ is a radio show/podcast hosted on Australia Broadcasting Corporation‘s (ABC) Radio National. The subject matter of the show is ‘An exploration of all things mental.’ Each episode deep dives into concepts of Neuroscience such as Autism, Mental Health, and Memory.

I discovered the show using the Pocket Cast app but you can get it at iTunes and other podcast platforms. As I scrolled through the list of episodes, the title ‘A Stroke Of Reality’ instantly grabbed my attention. My father is a stroke victim and I’ve always wanted to know more about the causes of a stroke. Within 28 minutes of listening to this informative podcast, I felt I had a much better understanding.

The true story of young actor and stroke sufferer Luke Webb

This show originally aired on the 4th September 2016 and was hosted by Lynne Malcom. Featured guests are Dr. Caleb Ferguson from the Sydney University of Technology, Stroke Foundation CEO Dr. Sharon McGowan, and stroke sufferer Luke Webb.

The synopsis of the show begins with the startling revelation that strokes can happen at any age. After a brief intro, we hear a first-hand account of how 20-year-old Luke Webb suffered a stroke.

During some leisure time with friends, Luke recalls feeling ‘smoky’ as he describes it. He sensibly opted to get checked up at the hospital. After two hours of check-ups, Luke started to feel the right side of his face drooping and his speech slurring. Then he was unable to raise his right arm. We learn from this that these are the three key signs someone is having a stroke. So that’s:

  • Face drooping.
  • Slurred Speech.
  • Inability to fully raise either arm.

As Dr. Sharon McGowan points out later in the show, should you see or experience any of these signs, call an ambulance immediately.

Dr. McGowan continues with another very important point about the time-scale for effectively treating a stroke:

Every stroke is a medical emergency……..optimally we need to treat stroke within four and a half hours

Going back to Luke’s real life account, he was sent to a bigger hospital to have an MRI scan. It was from this scan the medical staff detected a clot in Luke’s brain which had remarkably flushed itself out. In Luke’s own words:

I was very, very lucky, from the MRI they could tell I had had a clot but it had flushed itself out, ….I remember before and after but I don’t remember (a) lot of in-between, it was really hazy… then I remember waking up that afternoon in a rickety old 40-year-old bed in a geriatric ward, and I couldn’t move my right side, I couldn’t move my leg, my arm. My tongue was hanging out of my mouth….. that’s really all I (can) remember”.

It turns out that Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) as a result of sustained air travel caused Luke’s stroke. It is worth noting that DVT can also be brought on by sedentary lifestyle and obesity.

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What is a stroke?

Next, Lynne Malcom asks Dr. McGowan what exactly is a stroke to which she answers:

…a stroke in its very simplest form is an attack on the brain. So a stroke affects your brain and it cuts off the blood supply to the brain, and that can either be from a burst blood vessel in your head or it can be from a blocked blood vessel in your head. So there are two types of stroke. A blocked blood vessel is the majority, it’s about 80% of strokes, and a burst blood vessel is the other 20%”

What increases risk of stroke?

Obesity and sedentary lifestyle can increase the risk of stroke. Diabetes and high blood pressure are other warning signs to watch out for

How to decrease the risk of stroke

A healthy diet and regular exercise can help decrease the risk of stroke

The Effects Of A Stroke

Dr. McGowan goes on to explain that the effects of stroke vary considerably according to circumstances. Strokes can be fatal in some cases and in most cases will leave the victim with a cognitive and/or physical disability either temporarily or permanently. Factors that affect the severity of stroke include the type of stroke and how quickly a stroke victim receives treatment.

Advances in Neuroscience that are changing how stroke is treated

We are introduced to Dr. Caleb Ferguson, Stroke Foundation ambassador and Post-doctoral Research Fellow at the University of Technology Sydney. He explains about a new type of treatment called ‘thrombolysis’ which has been around for a decade or so:

…a therapy that is an anticoagulant drug, so blood thinning therapy. It’s given through an infusion into a patient’s vein, and it’s given as a bolus or an immediate injection, but then as an infusion thereafter for a set amount of time. And that will thin the blood with an aim or an objective really to dissolve that clot that exists in ischaemic stroke”.

The term ‘ischaemic’ refers to the more common cause of stroke, the blocked blood vessel in the head.

Dr. Ferguson further mentions a second new type of treatment known as ’embolectomy’

“One of the new novel therapies that is available as well is clot retrieval or embolectomy for stroke. And this is quite an exciting therapy that’s available only in select centres, primarily at the moment within metropolitan areas in the major cities within Australia. Just to explain a little bit about what embolectomy or clot retrieval is, so it’s quite similar to what we would do at the moment for a heart attack in terms of retrieving a clot through an artery. This is a procedure whereby patients would undergo an invasive procedure where they would have a sheath inserted, usually in the groin, in the artery there, and this sheath is fed up into the artery within the brain, and it’s almost like a cork screw type device that the interventional neuroradiologist can retrieve that clot and pull that out in that way. So it’s very exciting and that shows a lot of promise to improve patient outcome”.

What The Stroke Foundation does for stroke victims

The Stroke Foundation in Australia provides information and support for stroke victims and their families. The foundation launched a website called ‘Enable Me’ offering resources and tips on recovery and rehabilitation from stroke plus a portal for healthcare workers and stroke survivors to connect, meet up and form strong relationships. They also have a number of other sites focused on educating both health professionals and the public about stroke.

Major stroke charities in the U.K & U.S

A quick google search brought up the Stroke Association in the U.K and the National Stroke Association in the U.S. Both charities offer a comprehensive set of resources on stroke, stroke advocacy, and stroke prevention.

Final Thoughts

I learned a great deal from this podcast. I’ll be going back to listen to more episodes of this highly informative and educational series that unlocks the mysteries of the human brain. As mentioned earlier on, there is a wealth of knowledge readily available via ‘All In The Mind’ on mental health. The show is an invaluable tool in understanding such vital issues which affect so many of us.

You can listen to All In The Mind ‘A Stroke Of Reality’ and other episodes via the link below or on your preferred podcast app.

http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/allinthemind/stroke-of-reality/7808340

Find out more about stroke on the NHS website

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What I’m Learning This Week: Forensic Psychology

The Open University’s free course on Forensic Psychology

Since October 2015 I have been an active learner on an excellent site called Future Learn. The site offers regular self-paced courses or ‘MOOCs’ for free with the option to purchase certificates at a reasonable price.

Many top universities from across the globe provide courses on Future Learn. One of them being renowned distance learning facilitator, Open University.

I’m fortunate to have had access to a variety of stimulating subjects from fiction writing to anthropological social media studies and more.

I find that unique and thought provoking subjects always peak my interest. So, this week I embarked on a short study of Forensic Psychology with the Open University.

Maybe it’s the effect of watching programmes like Netflix series ‘Making A Murderer’ that intrigued me to learn about forensic psychology. I’m on the first week of the course and I have a great deal to learn on the subject but what I’ve learned already is eye opening.

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Relying on eyewitness accounts

I always assumed that forensics I.e. DNA testing, fingerprint scanning etc. are rock solid techniques, totally infallible. I was naïve and I was wrong.

In actual fact, far more weight is placed on eyewitness and verbal accounts than forensic science when it comes to solving crime here in the U.K. This is equally applicable in the U.S too.

I was surprised to discover that a lot of people are wrongfully convicted and the reason why? There are a number of factors like mistaken identity for example. Our short-term memory isn’t great at recalling unfamiliar faces. It can take up to 4-6 weeks for the police to organise suspects for an ID parade. Even the way questions are asked to witnesses could lead them to pick out innocent people.

With all this new information I couldn’t help thinking of the video footage of the police interrogating a then 17-year old Brendan Dassey. Watch it here then decide for yourself whether the police used lead questions to coerce a confession. What we do know is Brendan has now been exonerated after a lengthy incarceration.

Miscarriages of Justice

As part of week one of this 8-week course, I was tested on the causes of miscarriages of justice. I had to drag 8 different factors in order from the highest to lowest common cause. Those factors included police misconduct, forensic blood analysis, and eyewitness misidentification. The data for this exercise was based on findings from Scheck, Neufeld and Dwyer (2000. What they reveal which I got hopelessly wrong in the test is eyewitness misidentification came top of the list. In second and third place were forensic blood analysis and police misconduct.

The Innocence Project

The names mentioned above are not unrelated to this topic. In fact, two of them, Barry Scheck and Peter Neufeld founded The Innocence Project back in 1992. The Open University describes them as

a US organisation dedicated to exonerating wrongfully convicted individuals through DNA testing”.

Most will know about The Innocence Project, especially if they’ve seen ‘Making a Murderer’ where we learn they (The Innocence Project) once successfully exonerated Steven Avery. We also know from the podcast sensation ‘Serial’ they are currently working on the case of Adnan Syed.

Adnan Syed

Whatever your stance may be on their work, The Innocence Project shed much-needed light on major crime-solving issues. The fact is many of the techniques we take to be bulletproof are prone to error and inaccuracy. It becomes clear that crime solving is far more complicated than is portrayed on flashy TV dramas. What concerns me most of all is the margin of error when it comes to convicting innocent people. It pains me to think of the grief and anxiety wrongly convicted suspects and their families go through. How many have their lives taken away and in worst case scenarios are sentenced to death for crimes they never did?

Join the Forensic Psychology course

The Open University course on Forensic Psychology is free to join on Future Learn. Why not gain some insight into a very misunderstood subject and increase your knowledge at the same time?