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WEDNESDAY, July 7, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Is it possible to become addicted to gaming on the internet?

Yes, warns new research that discovered when young people get too hooked it may trigger sleep difficulties, depression, anxiety and, in some cases, even suicidal thoughts.

Phone interviews conducted among nearly 3,000 American college students between 2007 and ...

Telehealth is increasing in popularity in the United States, partly due to the pandemic. But some children with autism have difficulty sitting through these virtual appointments.

Yet those visits can be a helpful part of a child's ongoing medical care, and their convenience may help limit time away from work and school, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics' Healthy Children web...

Your health and fitness apps may have privacy issues that put your personal information at risk, researchers warn.

"This analysis found serious problems with privacy and inconsistent privacy practices in mHealth [mobile health] apps. Clinicians should be aware of these and articulate them to patients when determining the benefits and risks," lead study author Muhammad Ikram and his co-aut...

Fewer temptations at checkout?

People may spend more money when they buy their groceries online, but they also tend to buy fewer unhealthy, "impulse-sensitive" foods like candy and cookies, new research shows.

For the study, the researchers looked at the shopping habits of 137 primary household shoppers in Maine to compare their in-store and online purchases. The shoppers had shopp...

Bots, not individual users, drive much of the COVID-19 misinformation on Facebook, according to a new study.

Bots are large numbers of automated accounts controlled by single users.

"The coronavirus pandemic has sparked what the World Health Organization has called an 'infodemic' of misinformation," said study leader John Ayers, a scientist who specializes in public health surveilla...

Most Americans mistakenly believe they can spot fake news, which makes them more vulnerable to the false information, a new study claims.

The research included nearly 8,300 people who were asked to evaluate the accuracy of a series of Facebook headlines and then rate their own abilities to identify false news.

About 90% of participants said they had an above average ability to tel...

Many Americans have used telehealth and would turn to it for mental health care, a new online poll shows.

Conducted by the American Psychological Association (APA) from March 26 to April 5, the poll found that 38% had used telehealth to consult with a health professional, up from 31% last fall.

In all, 82% have used it since the start of the pandemic, the poll found. Most consultati...

Is too much screen time turning kids off of books?

New research suggests that's so: Toddlers who regularly spent time on electronic devices -- including tablets, smartphones and TVs -- were less likely to read print books with their parents at age 3. That, in turn, translated to even more screen use by age 5.

The findings do not prove definitively that early exposure to electronic d...

Plenty of teens are burdened with a chronic and often paralyzing fear of being harshly judged by others. Unfortunately, many can't get in-person treatment that could help.

But now a team of Swedish researchers says that an entirely online version of a widely used behavioral therapy technique can deliver significant relief to those affected.

The finding could pave the way for easier ...

Virtual doctor visits for children grew this past year during the pandemic, but a new poll shows U.S. parents are divided on whether they will continue using this option in the future.

The C.S. Mott Children's Hospital National Poll on Children's Health at the University of Michigan found that about one in five children had a virtual visit with their doctor for check-ups, minor illnesses...

When the COVID-19 pandemic kept young kids indoors, their time spent watching TV and other screens rose dramatically.

That's the finding of a new study that investigated the screen time of kindergarteners from low-income families in Ohio. The researchers found that their use of television, video, movies, short clips, and apps or games on any electronic device topped six hours a day in May...

Looking for a morale boost or some solid encouragement? If so, socializing the old-fashioned way -- live and in-person -- will likely do more to lift your spirits than online interactions, new research suggests.

It's the key takeaway from a survey of more than 400 college undergraduate students.

"We wanted to see if the social support provided over social media was associated with b...

Health care in rural America has become ever more scarce during the coronavirus pandemic, with folks finding it increasingly difficult to find a doctor or get to a hospital.

For a decade, rural areas have been losing hospitals to financial problems, forcing residents to either drive long distances or shrug their shoulders and forgo needed care.

Add to that a nationwide shortage of d...

Outspoken pandemic denier Ted Nugent announced this week that he's tested positive for COVID-19, after 10 days of symptoms so severe that at times he "literally could hardly crawl out of bed."

But despite his illness, the Republican rocker from Michigan remains skeptical about COVID vaccines.

"I haven't taken the vaccine, because nobody knows what's in it," Nugent said in a Facebook...

Video conferencing has surged during the COVID-19 pandemic, but many workers are developing what some call "Zoom fatigue."

Now, new research suggests a prime factor behind the trend: A lack of inclusion. The study finds that when people feel they're really part of the group being gathered together, video conferences become less exhausting.

In the study, researchers asked 55 Americ...

Finding a new doctor can be a daunting task. For help, many older adults turn to online reviews, a new study finds.

In fact, many people rate online reviews as highly as they would a recommendation from friends and family when picking a doctor, the new research found.

"Doctors and policymakers should know that many older adults are viewing and valuing online ratings and reviews when...

DJ Khaled, Halsey and other musicians are selling electronic cigarettes to young people through product placement in music videos that receive hundreds of millions of views, a pair of new studies report.

Overall, music videos identified as featuring e-cigarette product placements during a four-month period in 2018 received more than 1.6 billion total views on YouTube, researchers report i...

Illegal drug sales on the dark web are common, hard to detect and are fueling America's opioid epidemic, a University of Texas study reveals.

Opioids include prescription painkillers (such as oxycodone) and illegal drugs (such as heroin and fentanyl).

"People are struggling from the effects of addiction," said Tiffany Champagne-Langabeer, senior author of a new investigation of ille...

Here's yet another reason to keep your teenager from spending countless hours online and on popular social media: New research suggests it increases cyberbullying, particularly among teen boys.

"There are some people who engage in cyberbullying online because of the anonymity and the fact that there's no retaliation," said lead investigator Amanda Giordano. She is an associate professor...

Despite being the dating-app generation, young adults are largely saying no to casual sex, and less drinking and more video games are two reasons why, a new study suggests.

Surveys in recent years have been finding that compared with past generations, today's young adults are not as interested in "hooking up."

The new study is no exception: It found that between 2007 and 2017, the n...

If you're one of the many people who've switched to working at home during the COVID-19 pandemic, you need to take care of your eyes, the American Academy of Ophthalmology says.

Staring at a screen too long can lead to digital eye strain. Symptoms include blurry vision, headaches and tired, dry eyes. It happens because we blink less often when using screens. Blinking keeps the surface of ...

Preschoolers who spend a lot of time watching movies and shows on TVs and other screens are more likely to develop emotional and behavioral problems by age 5, a Finnish study warns.

But despite their reputation, video games did not appear to promote any emotional problems in youngsters, researchers concluded.

"We found that high levels of screen time at the age of 1.5 years is relat...

One in four U.S. households use smart speakers to check the weather, play music and query search engines. But a new technology may soon have folks asking, "Hey Google, how's my heart?"

Researchers from the University of Washington, Seattle, have developed a skill for Amazon Alexa and Google Home that allows the devices to check heart rhythms.

Like a bat using echolocation to hunt fo...

Readers pay attention when social media sites label an article as "unverified" or "suspicious," a new study suggests.

But how an article is presented -- including author credentials and writing style -- doesn't affect readers' views about its credibility.

The findings show that big tech companies such as Facebook and Twitter have a responsibility to combat the spread of misleading a...

Could endless hours spent scrolling through social media and watching TV trigger binge eating in preteens?

Apparently so, new research suggests.

"Children may be more prone to overeating while distracted in front of screens. They may also be exposed to more food advertisements on television," said study author Dr. Jason Nagata. He is an assistant professor of pediatrics at the Unive...

For Morgan Compton, 7, who has attended school remotely for nearly a year, the stress of the pandemic manifests itself in meltdowns.

On one particular day, Morgan "threw a fit and decided to go upstairs," said her mother, Tracy Compton. Hearing the sound of his daughter's tears, Compton's husband, John, who also works from home, got involved.

Meltdowns are familiar to any paren...

You've had a stroke and arrive at a hospital, but the stroke specialist is off-duty. Never fear: Telemedicine may help save your life.

Especially during the COVID-19 crisis, so-called 'telestroke' services -- where health workers use video to consult with a stroke specialist who could be miles away -- is helping to lead to better patient outcomes, new research shows.

"Our findings p...

As the amount of time young teenage girls spend glued to Instagram, TikTok and other social media sites goes up, so does their long-term risk for suicide, a new study warns.

The finding stems from a decade spent tracking social media habits and suicide risk among 500 teenage boys and girls, the longest such effort to date, the study authors said.

"We found that girls who started usi...

A majority of dermatology patients are happy with telehealth appointments in place of in-person office visits, a new study finds.

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced many medical specialties to move from in-person to online appointments, but dermatology had already seen increased use of telehealth visits over the last decade, according to the George Washington (GW) University researchers.

People who are hesitant about getting the COVID-19 vaccine don't have to work hard to find internet rumors and theories that will fuel their fears regarding the vaccine's safety.

That's because anti-vaccine groups and individuals are working overtime to promote frightening, false theories about the two COVID-19 vaccines that have now been administered to more than 24 million Americans, in...

Too much screen time can make your toddler more distractible, British researchers warn.

The use of smartphones and tablets by babies and toddlers has soared in recent years.

"The first few years of life are critical for children to learn how to control their attention and ignore distraction, early skills that are known to be important for later academic achievement," said lead autho...

You have probably seen the social media posts: Your good friend's co-worker is raising money online to help pay for cancer treatments or another friend needs funds to pay medical bills after a car crash.

Crowdsourced fundraising seems to, at least partly, fill a gap between out-of-pocket health care costs and what people can afford.

A new study looked at what the role of one of the ...

As Americans await their COVID-19 shot, a new study of a different vaccine shows the power of Facebook posts in fueling "anti-vax" resistance to immunization.

The study included more than 10 years of public Facebook posts on the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine. It found that nearly 40% of 6,500 HPV vaccine-related posts from 2006 to 2016 amplified a perceived risk. The data suggest the...

Tinder, Grindr and other dating apps have a reputation for encouraging casual hookups, but a new study suggests app users may be looking for -- and finding -- love in all the right places after all.

Unlike more traditional dating sites such as Match.com and EHarmony, these apps are largely based on rating photos. You swipe right if you like what you see, or left if you don't. It...

One in four doctors has been personally attacked or sexually harassed on social media, a new study finds.

Women are more likely to be sexually harassed, while both men and women are attacked based on religion, race or medical recommendations, researchers say.

Doctors received negative reviews, coordinated harassment, threats at work, public exposure of their personal information and...

Telemedicine rapidly expanded during the COVID-19 pandemic as people turned to their phones and computers rather than leave their homes for health care.

But some groups of people were left behind in the telemedicine boom, a new study reports.

Middle-aged and older folks are much less likely to complete their scheduled telemedicine visits, as well as Medicaid recipients and those who...

In late December, Dr. Ada Stewart asked her staff to check on a patient who had missed an appointment.

She soon learned that the patient had no transportation for the 45-minute drive, so Stewart offered to conduct the appointment by phone instead.

"It still accomplished so much. I was able to see how their diabetes was doing, how they were preparing for the holiday seaso...

Adults living with kidney failure are receptive to using mobile devices to help with their care, according to a new study.

Mobile health can provide many benefits for patients, especially for those whose care is complicated and who have dietary restrictions, researchers said. Whether people on dialysis are ready to incorporate mobile technology in their care would be a limiting factor.

You can't believe everything you read on social media, but those who rely on it for their news tend to think otherwise.

A new study found that the more a person turned to social media as their main source of news, the more likely that person was to believe misinformation about the COVID-19 pandemic. Levels of worry about the coronavirus amplified people's belief in that misinformation.

Young adults who spend hours a day on social media are at heightened risk of developing depression in the near future, new research suggests.

In recent years, a number of studies have linked heavy social media use to an increased risk of depression.

"But then you have to ask the chicken-and-egg question," said study author Dr. Brian Primack, a professor of public health at the Unive...


Nearly all cases of COVID-19 are completely harmless. Masks deprive people of oxygen. COVID-19 is a hoax, dreamed up by politicians to control your life.

None of these statements is true, and yet every one has spread like wildfire through social media at one point or another this year.

That's because such misinformation exploits specific vulnerabilities in people's ability to th...

One way to to influence meat consumption -- and perhaps curb climate change -- is through social media messaging, according to a new study that used Facebook Messenger.

"The results of the research are really encouraging," said study co-author Wouter Poortinga, a professor of environmental psychology at Cardiff University in Wales. "It shows that we can make changes to our diet, and if we...

Young men's attitudes about body image and fitness can be affected by Instagram influencers, according to a new study.

It included 300 American men, ages 18-30, who were shown images of bare-chested men and male fashion images similar to those posted by Instagram influencers, as well as other types of images.

The participants were significantly less satisfied with their own bodies a...

Parents' constant refrain, telling their teens to turn off the TV, stop playing video games or put down the cellphone, may not be necessary.

And new research suggests those worried about their kids becoming addicted to technology may even be able to breathe a sigh of relief.

The amount of time young people spend on technology -- and parental limits on that time -- had no lasting eff...

The use of telemedicine led to an increase in the number of inner-city kids in Los Angeles who kept asthma-related doctor appointments during the coronavirus pandemic, new research shows.

The researchers examined "show rates" -- how often parents kept an appointment for their children instead of not showing up -- over the first four months of the pandemic.

Allergists who run a schoo...

Young adults are the loneliest Americans, according to a new study that examined the causes of loneliness throughout adulthood.

Researchers analyzed responses from more than 2,800 people nationwide (ages 20-69) who participated in an online survey.

They found that levels of loneliness were highest among 20-somethings and lowest among respondents in their 60s. Loneliness reached anot...

Walking away from TV, laptops and cellphones and spending more time in sports and other extracurricular activities boosts teens' mental health, Canadian researchers say.

Spending less than two hours a day browsing the internet, playing video games and using social media was linked to increased levels of life satisfaction and optimism and lower levels of anxiety and depression, especially ...

As the COVID-19 pandemic spread throughout the United States, many people changed the way they live: As shopping, education and work shifted online, so did routine health care appointments.

However, while telemedicine seemed to make it easy to check in with a primary care doctor, a new study suggests that wasn't the case for everyone.

Researchers found that certain patients with con...

Is your kid suddenly clamoring for a fast food meal or a sugary cereal you've never even heard of? He or she may have seen the product featured on a favorite "kid influencer" video.

In a new study, researchers viewed the top 50 kid influencer videos on YouTube and found that 9 out of 10 featured unhealthy foods. Nearly 1 in 3 promoted a fast-food chain.

But, what in the world is...

Virtual follow-up care for surgical patients provides as much face time with doctors as in-person care, according to a new study.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, many surgical patients are being offered virtual follow-up appointments instead of in-person visits, the researchers noted.

Their study included 400 patients who had minimally invasive laparoscopic removal of their...