Space porn: These images are (quite literally) out of this world
Smoking’s dwindling band of apologists may claim that, despite the deadly risk, dragging on a cigarette is a great way to reduce stress. Not so, indicates a new study published in the British Journal of Psychiatry. Researchers from Oxford and Cambridge Universities and Kings College London report that quitting helps to cut stress and anxiety. “The belief that smoking is stress relieving is pervasive, but almost certainly wrong,” the authors write. “The reverse is true: smoking is probably anxiogenic [causes anxiety] and smokers deserve to know this and understand how their own experience may be misleading.” The scientists followed 491 smokers at cessation clinics around England. Initially, 106 of the participants (21.6%) were diagnosed with mental health issues — mainly mood and anxiety disorders. After six months, 68 (24%) of the participants managed to quit smoking completely, and these successful quitters showed a drop in anxiety. Just 10 of them (14.7%) had a current psychiatric disorder at follow-up. Why might this be? “There is no obvious causal mechanism other than those who relapse feeling concern arising from the continuing health risks of their smoking,” the researchers write. “Stopping smoking probably reduces anxiety and the effect is probably larger in those who have a psychiatric disorder and who smoke to cope with stress. A failed quit attempt may well increase anxiety to a modest degree, but perhaps to a clinically relevant degree in people with a psychiatric disorder and those who report smoking to cope. Clinicians should reassure patients that stopping smoking is beneficial for their mental health, but they may need to monitor for clinically relevant increases in anxiety among people who fail to attain abstinence.”
Valerie Tejeda is a writer who has contributed to a variety of different publications, including but not limited to: The Huffington Post, Yahoo! Shine, The Fix, Latina, Cosmopolitan.com, Xo Jane, and The Bump. She is currently based in California where she also works towards completing her debut Young Adult novel. Follow her on Twitter @val_tm.More Valerie Tejeda.
NASA astronaut Mike Hopkins
On December 28, 2013, Expedition 38 crew member Mike Hopkins participating in the second of two space walks to replace a degraded pump module on the International Space Station. (NASA astronaut Rick Mastracchio is reflected in his helmet!)
The Soyuz TMA-10M
The Soyuz TMA-10M headed towards the International Space Station with crew members from Expedition 37 onboard.
40 years ago the Apollo 8 mission flew up to the moon, orbited it ten times and then returned to Earth. This picture was taken from that flight and shows the Earth as it seemingly rises in similar fashion to a sunrise.
Sunrise from Expedition 36
NASA Flight Engineer Karen L. Nyberg of Expedition 36 took this photo of the sun rising -- a sight they saw nearly 16 times per day due to the speed of the International Space Station's orbit around the earth.
A pair of NanoRacks CubeSats -- nanosattelite spacecrafts carrying experiments -- were launched by Expedition 38.
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