1. DANIEL WEBER RESEARCH: SHOCKING RESULTS ABOUT FALLING MALE SPERM COUNTS

    By Daniel Weber, PHD MSC

    Sperm counts among western men have halved in last 40 years – study

    Reasons for the shocking drop are unclear, say researchers, and represent a huge and neglected area of public health

    The Guardian
    July 25, 2017

    Sperm counts among men have more than halved in the last 40 years, research suggests, although the drivers behind the decline remain unclear. The latest findings reveal that between 1973 and 2011, the concentration of sperm in the ejaculate of men in western countries has fallen by an average of 1.4% a year, leading to an overall drop of just over 52%.

    “The results are quite shocking,” said Hagai Levine, an epidemiologist and lead author of the study from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. While infertility treatments such as IVF can offer solutions to potential ramifications of the decline on one level, little has been done to address the root of the issue, said Levine, pointing out low sperm counts might also be an indicator of poorer health among men more generally. “This is a classic under the radar huge public health problem that is really neglected,” he said.

    It is not the first time researchers have highlighted concerns about sperm counts, but previous studies have been criticized, with some saying the decline could be down to changing laboratory methods, or studies failing to take into account whether participants were selected on the basis of infertility problems.

    But the authors of the latest study say they have addressed such concerns, analyzing only studies that used the same sperm count method, were of a reasonable size and involved men not known to have infertility problems or disease, among other measures. The study, published in the journal Human Reproduction Update by an international team of researchers, drew on 185 studies conducted between 1973 and 2011, involving almost 43,000 men. The team split the data based on whether the men were from western countries – including Australia and New Zealand as well as countries in North America and Europe – or from elsewhere.

    After accounting for factors including age and how long men had gone without ejaculation, the team found that sperm concentration fell from 99 million per ml in 1973 to 47.1 million per ml in 2011 – a decline of 52.4% – among western men unaware of their fertility. For the same group, total sperm count, the number of sperm in a semen sample, fell by just under 60%. In addition, a less dramatic decline in sperm concentration since the 1970s was seen for western men who were known to have conceived with a partner, but there was no clear trend for total sperm count in this group. By contrast, no such trends were seen for men in other countries although the authors caution that far fewer studies have been carried out among such populations.

    Richard Sharpe, an expert in male reproductive health and professor at the University of Edinburgh, welcomed the study, saying the research has tackled many of the problems of previous analyses, adding that it “is about as close as we are going to get” to being sure of the decline. But he stressed it still unclear what is behind the drop, meaning that it is difficult to address. “That is primarily because we have seriously under-invested in male reproductive research,” he said.

    Tina Kold Jensen of Syddansk University in Denmark, who was not involved in the current research, said she was surprised by the new findings. “I thought it would probably have stopped,” she said of the decline, pointing out that she had been involved in a 15-year Danish study focusing on young men recruited for military service which found no drop in sperm counts. But, she noted, that might be because many of the men had poor sperm counts anyway.

    Levine agreed that research into potential causes was needed. Numerous possibilities have been mooted, with research suggesting links to body weight, a lack of physical activity, smoking, and exposure of pregnant women to chemicals found in myriad household products, known as endocrine disruptors.

    But controversy remains. While Allan Pacey, professor of andrology at the University of Sheffield, said the latest study is the best he’d ever read on the decline, he said the jury is still out on whether the trend is real. “You need to go out to answer that question. For example you take a random sample of every 18-year-old in the UK and you test 10,000 18-year-olds every year prospectively over the course of 20-25 years,” he said, emphasizing that Jensen’s study using such an approach had found no decline. “We have got very little epidemiological evidence to say what might be causing it, so we are still scratching our heads a little bit in my view,” said Pacey.

    But he agreed there is cause for concern around male reproductive function, pointing out that rates of testicular cancer are on the rise, and stressed that men who are concerned about their sperm count and who wish to have children should not delay. “If you are a guy with a low sperm count and you try for a baby when you are 21, you are probably not going to notice you’ve got a problem,” Pacey said. “But if you are trying with your partner when she is 35 then that’s when the heartache comes, because by then you have got low sperm count, you’ve got an older partner and you haven’t got a lot of time to try and fix it medically.”

  2. Some Interesting News!

    By Annie, Best Answer For Cancer

    I ran across a very interesting piece of news recently that I want to share with you. The Susan G. Komen organization is pulling out of Arizona. Mary Budinger, an Advisory Board member who lives in Arizona, sent me two articles from the Arizona Republic newspaper which says SGK: “will close in July because of dwindling donations and event participation … 7,500 people ran in the 2016 Race for the Cure, a number significantly lower than in previous years, which at one time saw upward of 30,000 participants.” Lower participation and donations are attributed to the fact that Arizona’s weather permits many organizations to hold races and outdoor fundraising events. The executive director suggests there is simply too much competition.

    Nice try, but there is much more to it than that. I’ll let Wikipedia hit some of the high points: “In 2012, Komen’s controversial attempt to withdraw funding for mammogram referrals provided by Planned Parenthood caused a significant decline in donations, event participation and public trust. The organization was further criticized for its use of donor funds, the CEO’s 64% pay raise after the significant drop in donations, its administration costs, its choice of sponsor affiliations, its role in commercial cause marketing, and its use of misleading statistics in advertising. In March 2013, Komen dropped from Charity Navigator’s highest rating of four stars down to three stars and then to two stars in 2014.”

    I still remember when SGK slathered their pink on M&M candies and buckets of fried chicken—foods no cancer patient should touch—in return for sponsorship money. The organization chooses to beat the drum for annual mammograms, despite a mountain of evidence that they represent a poor early detection technology. Why not make the choice to promote some form of thermography? Why not wage a war on sugar, cancer’s favorite food? Why not come out against trans fats which we’ve known for decades to be carcinogenic? Why not give voice to the 2005 research by Environmental Working Group which detected 287 chemicals in umbilical cord blood, of which 180 are known to cause cancer in humans or animals? Or give voice to the more recent work of Dr. Thomas Seyfried? You get the idea.

    Seems the American public is getting the same idea. SGK, founded in 1982, started out with a promise to find a cure for cancer. In 2016, SGK announced their “Bold Goal to reduce the current number of breast cancer deaths by 50% in the U.S. by 2026.” Given how they choose to operate, it is hard to imagine SGK could even make a small dent in the coming fatalities.

    It is my opinion that so many people have had cancer now, or known family members and friends who have had cancer, that they have glimpsed the harsh realities of the cancer industry’s machinery. And SGK, advocating for the status quo, is part of that machinery. Increasingly, the public is rejecting the status quo.

    So to all of you on the front lines of innovative, integrative care—keep it up. The public is waking up and rejecting the status quo. Yes, many still fall for the mainstream marketing because getting the diagnosis of cancer can scare the living daylights out you. Having some good survival statistics for alternative therapies can help people look at the options that are available.

    I strongly encourage all of you to participate in one of our clinical studies to get quotable survival stats for alternative medical therapies. Write me and I’ll tell you how. I also encourage us all to amplify our messaging and let people know good options exist.

    Our efforts ARE making a difference! Change IS happening!

    Thank you for all you do,
    Annie

  3. What Screen Time and Screen Media Do To Your Child’s Brain and Sensory Processing Ability

    By: Amy (Friedy) Guttman-Singer and Evelyn (Roizy) Guttman (HandsOnOT)

    It’s a scene we’re sure you’ve witnessed again and again. A family is sitting in a restaurant having dinner. The four year old is clearly fed up with sitting, and starts to complain, jump on her seat or run around. But a few moments later, she’s quietly in her seat again, enabling her parents and older siblings to enjoy a peaceful meal and conversation for the next 30 minutes. What happened? Her father handed her his iPhone. It’s a scene we see repeated in doctors’ waiting rooms, supermarkets, public transportation… and while we entirely understand it, it also saddens us. So many caring, well-meaning parents are unaware of the developmental damage caused to their children by exposure to screen time and screen media.

    Screens - Televisions. Computer monitors. Tablets. Smartphones. Dumb phones. Children’s toy computers. Kindles. The Apple watch. If it gives off electromagnetic radiation in the visual spectrum, it’s a screen. In many ways screens have changed our lives for the better. In other ways, they’ve changed our lives and the lives of our children – and not necessarily for the better.

    The original official policy of the American Academy of Pediatrics (made in 1999 and reaffirmed in 2011) states that “pediatricians should urge parents to avoid television [or other media] viewing for children under the age of two years.” Children between 2 and 5 should be limited to “no more than 1 hour per day.” In 2016 they issued a policy adjustment stating that pediatricians should discourage any media use under the age of 18 months, except for video-chatting (as often happens with far-away relatives). Between 18 and 24 months, if a parent wants to introduce screen media, then they should choose high-quality apps and use it together with their toddlers. (Although the policy indicates that the educational benefits for children under the age of 24 months are low, and come mainly from parent interaction with the child, and not from the media itself.). While the original policy of the AAP called for children older than 5 to be viewing no more than 2 hours of media daily, the update 2016 recommendations explains that in today’s world, when media is everywhere, a one-size-fits-all approach doesn’t work. Families need to make themselves aware of the risks and benefits of media use, and create individualized plans for their children, including enough sleep and physical exercise.

    Reasons given by the AAP – and other research studies – include associations with obesity, sleep issues, aggressive behaviors, less time spent in developmentally helpful interaction with parents and siblings, language delays and attention issues. Reference is made to the potentially harmful effect of media exposure during the rapid brain development period of age 0-2, but most studies – and even the AAP policies – don’t delve into the details of the impact on your child’s brain.

    We’d like to give you a peek behind the scenes, and show you what happens to the brain when it’s in the process of viewing screen media.

    Screens Give Your Body the Blues

    We’ve all been fooled by the “what color is white light?” question. Answer: all of them! Natural daylight, provided by our sun, is made up of all the colors of the visual spectrum, although there does tend to be a little more blue light emitted than the other colors.

    emission spectrum natural daylight comments

    The blue light of natural sunlight does some great things for our body. It boosts attention, reaction times and mood, and it suppresses melatonin (the hormone that regulates your circadian rhythms and makes you sleepy when it increases) so you can be awake and alert during your active hours. That’s great for your body – in the daytime. When your body is supposed to be winding down for sleep, however, it’s another story. Most of today’s devices are illuminated by LEDs, which have a much higher percentage of blue lightwaves than any other light source – natural or artificial. Here’s what “white” light is really made of in the following artificial light sources:

    emission spectrum artificial light comments

    (The above image comes from the Molecular Vision Journal. The markup is our own.)

    White LEDs are almost entirely blue light, combined with a chemical compound to make it look white. Night-time exposure to LED-illuminated devices (most of the screens out there today: computers, tablets, phones, flat screen TVs, e-readers, video games) suppresses melatonin and disrupts the natural sleep cycle. A Scientific American article describes a study where volunteers spent several evenings reading for a prolonged period of time before a 10PM imposed bedtime. Some used printed books and some used e-readers. Those who used e-readers took longer to fall asleep, had less REM sleep and felt sleepier and less alert for hours after they woke up in the morning – even if they had gotten the same amount of sleep.

    We repeatedly see sleep cycle issues in the children who come to our clinic. When we probe, we almost inevitably hear that they’re playing video games, using social media or watching TV for an extended period before they go to bed.  Sleep cycle disruptions are a siginificant contributor to ADHD and other mood and behavioral issues. One of the first things we work with these parents and children on is significantly reducing screen time before bed. Blue light – it’s not for night!

    Fast Forward

    Okay, fine, you might be saying. I’ll curtail the screens at night, and let my children play their video games, use the computer and watch TV in the afternoon. We wish it were that simple. If your child’s screen use is focused on reading chapter books off a Kindle or typing in a word processing program, no problem. (Again, as long as it’s not at night when the blue wavelengths in the white LEDs will impact sleep patterns). But who among our kids spends his primary media time doing that? Our kids are playing fast-paced video games, watching cartoons and TV shows with plenty of action and jumping from photo to chat to status update on social media.

    The rapid-fire changes that happen in most screen activities, from video games to recorded entertainment to social media updates, affect two parts of the brain: the visual processing system and the vestibular system

    The Eyes Have It

    Let’s discuss the visual processing system first. The faster the changes in the sensory information you’re taking in, the faster your brain needs to process it in order to keep up. If the pace required is so fast it exceeds your brain’s threshold, you may experience sensory overload. That’s the “STOP! TOO MUCH! I CAN’T TAKE IT ANYMORE!” feeling – the one we sometimes get when we’re trying to cook dinner AND our baby is screaming and smelling like a horrendously dirty diaper AND our 3 year old is yanking on our shirt hem and whining he’s hungry AND our 6 year old is shoving a drawing in front of our eyes and yelling, “Look, Mom! Look at it!”

    Too much to process. Shut down. Good night. (Well, we wish. We parents usually have to recover pretty fast in situations like that.)

    The rapid-fire changes on typical screen entertainment are much faster than the typical visual changes of ordinary, unscreened life – the visual changes that our brain has been wired over the millennia to deal with.

    Yet these rapid changes don’t often cause perceptible visual sensory overload. They usually come in just under the threshold. The child can keep up with the processing, but their brain is working super-fast to do so.

    Often parents of children with ADD/ADHD diagnoses will tell us, puzzled, “I don’t understand. My child has trouble focusing on most things, but when it comes to TV or video games, I can’t get him to stop. I can wave my hand in front of his face, touch him or say his name loudly and it’s like I’m not there. He seems super-focused!”

    And he is. Children (especially with ADHD) often get into a state of hyper-focus, because their brain is so super-busy processing all the fast-changing visual information. This hyper-focus affects children more than adults (and in younger children more than older children) because the visual system itself is still developing, so the younger a child is, the more they have to focus in order to deal with all the information coming in. Eventually you pull them away from the screen. And pandemonium breaks loose. If they were super-focused before, they are now super-UNfocused. They’re hyper. They’re acting out. They’re in an awful mood. What HAPPENED?

    Coming off the Visual Fast-Track

    Your child’s brain was in super-fast, super-busy mode, processing all that visual stimuli. Suddenly all that visual stimuli stops. There’s nothing left to process. But the brain is still in super-fast, “hyper” mode. Until it readjusts to real life and a normal pace (which takes time), your child will be bouncing off the walls in an unconscious attempt to find stimuli moving at the artificially fast pace of his brain.

    That’s not all. The visual system is closely linked to the vestibular system – the sensory system that controls balance and your perception of where your body is in space. The vestibular system also has a significant impact on mood. The perception of linear, acceleration is calming (as most of us have experienced when rocking, swinging, walking or driving a cranky baby to sleep) and the perceptional of rotational acceleration is arousing. When your child’s visual system was super-busy processing, it locked up the vestibular system, putting mood on an artificially even keel. Remember your child’s lack of response when you waved your hand in front of his face? He wasn’t in a bad mood; he wasn’t in a good mood; he was in NO mood. Now his vestibular system has been released from its freeze, and it’s having just as hard a time readjusting. Mood swings, anyone?

    Let’s take a look at how to get your child from screen time back to real life without crashes and meltdowns.

    Jump My Sillies Out

    When you end your child’s screen time, don’t just let her chill out. Because she WON’T be chilling out. She’ll be jumping out of her skin.

    To reset the pace of her body and brain, jump her back INTO her skin. Use the vestibular system. Get your child moving. Jump, swing, run around. The linear acceleration will reset the vestibular system and calm the entire body. This is even if your child has had “active” screen time, like working out with a Wii or playing Pokemon Go or some other augmented reality game. They may be getting exercise, but they’re also overstimulating their visual processing system. The screen offsets the vestibular benefit of the movement, so you’ll still need some “unplugged” movement in order to reset the vestibular system and get the body back on track.

    Long-term Consequences

    Using physical activity is a good short-term technique to reset the vestibular and visual system and get your child back into normally-paced life more smoothly. As a long-term strategy, it leaves much to be desired. As we mentioned above, a child’s visual processing system is still significantly developing before the age of 2, and final development isn’t reached until 8 or 9 years old. It’s still unclear exactly what the effects of media exposure with its rapid-fire changes are for a developing system.

    There is a concern, however, that repeated incidents of super-busy processing during stages of development could cause permanent changes in the processing pace that the brain seeks. Your two-year old could potentially grow up feeling “comfortable” in the super-fast pace of screen media stimulation and uncomfortable in the normal pace of everyday life.Her performance might be high in gaming and internet information processing, but what about performance in low-tech activities such as building relationships? Parenting? Achieving greatness at anything, from sports to music to business? These true, satisfying achievements happen only at the pace of the natural world, not at the artificially accelerated pace of the screened world. They require focus, dedication, persistence and patience – even when the going seems slow, frustrating and boring in the moment.

    Set Your Child Up for Success

    We appreciate how much parents want to give their child the tools and resources to achieve the most they can. That’s why it pains us. Because while the parent thinks they’re doing something positive – or at least neutral – for their child by setting them in front of screen media, they’re actually interfering with the child’s natural, healthy development. The younger the child is, the greater the interference and future consequences.

    Why set a child up for issues and limitations that may or may not be conquerable?

    Why put a child on track for difficulties in life from age 2?

    We work all the time with children to enable them to overcome behavioral and emotional limitations caused by processing issues, so they can have a happy, functioning life full of achievement and satisfaction. You, as a parent, have an even more powerful role to play. You can give your child the best shot at that life from the outset, and minimize the chances of needing external intervention. As a caring, dedicated parent, we know you want it. And you can do it.

     

  4. MRI Scan Could Spare Some From Prostate Biopsy

    If your doctor suspects you have prostate cancer, undergoing a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan immediately after an initial screening might spare you the medical risks of a prostate biopsy and improve your chances of an accurate diagnosis.

    The results of a new British study suggest that MRI scans identified aggressive prostate cancers in men with the disease nearly twice as often as a transrectal ultrasound (TRUS)-directed prostate biopsy. However, among men without aggressive prostate cancers, the MRI incorrectly classified the disease more than twice as often as a TRUS-directed prostate biopsy. The study’s authors contend that if an MRI was used before biopsy to diagnose prostate cancer:

    • Nearly one in five deadly cancers missed with current testing methods would be detected
    • Unnecessary prostate biopsies would be reduced by 27 percent, and
    • Diagnosis of non-aggressive cancers also would be reduced.

    The authors, whose findings were published online in January 2017 in The Lancet, note that an MRI scan provides a detailed, computerized image of the prostate and surrounding tissue. By contrast, 12 cores of prostate tissue are taken at random during a TRUS-directed biopsy, so tissue that contains an aggressive cancer elsewhere in the prostate can be missed. They add that biopsies are uncomfortable and can cause bleeding and serious infections, so avoiding some of those procedures would prevent those risks.

    In the United States, limited access to qualified personnel to interpret prostate MRIs and the added expense of the scan has discouraged many doctors from ordering the test and third-party payers from covering the cost. And an MRI still may not be effective enough to be used routinely to detect—and rule out—malignant prostate cancers.

    What the study found
    In The Lancet study, 576 men suspected of having prostate cancer, based on initial screenings or family history, had a standard MRI followed by two types of prostate biopsy—a TRUS-directed biopsy and a prostate-mapping biopsy. The test was performed at hospitals and radiology labs throughout the United Kingdom.

    The study’s authors note that an MRI scan “tends to detect higher-risk disease and systematically overlooks low-risk disease.” For men who had prostate cancer that most physicians would recommend treating, the MRI missed 12 percent of the cases while the TRUS-directed biopsy missed 52 percent. But for nonaggressive cancers, the MRI missed 55 percent while the TRUS-directed prostate biopsy misclassified them just 1 percent of the time.

    “Detecting prostate cancers that need to be treated is a real clinical issue for those of us in the trenches treating prostate disease,” says Joel Piser, M.D., a urologist in Berkeley, Calif. “The primary concern in evaluating prostate or bladder symptoms is to rule out a significant malignancy. PSA (prostate-specific antigen) testing has helped but is far from perfect.”

    Piser says he uses the MRI to stage all newly diagnosed prostate cancer patients to gain valuable information on the extent of the disease and to help predict which patients will benefit from treatment versus active surveillance.

    He says the MRI is a great clinical test to help reduce the chance of missing significant cancers in men who have excessive risk factors for biopsies, such as those with prosthetic heart valves, men taking anticoagulation medication, and for those who have an extreme fear of biopsies.

    However, not all doctors who treat prostate cancer are convinced that MRI testing will become a part of regular prostate screening just yet. “For that to happen, MRI testing would have to show improved performance in identifying high-grade cancer and would have to be able to exclude high-grade cancer in men without the disease,” says H. Ballentine Carter, M.D., professor of urology and oncology at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore. “Further evaluation is needed. In addition, the performance and interpretation of MRIs would need to be standardized.”

    Bottom line
    If initial screening results from a blood test or digital rectal exam suggest you might have prostate cancer, make an appointment with a urologist for a follow-up evaluation. Make sure it includes a digital rectal exam and a repeat prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test and/or other special blood tests, such as the PHI (prostate health index) or the 4Kscore Test, to determine whether you need a prostate biopsy, Carter says. If the results suggest that a clinically significant prostate cancer may be present, you may want to consider getting an MRI scan to help inform and guide a prostate biopsy.

  5. Link between ‘Gamers’ and ‘Shooters’

    The article below shows a direct link between violent media content and aggressive behavior, posing an increasing risk to innocent human lives and society at large. It is sad that we have reached this stage and this article brings home the point of needing to address this trend.

    Article By Canadian OT, Cris Rowan

    On January 22, 2016, a 17 year old boy from La Loche, Saskatchewan in Canada shot 11 people killing four, including two brothers in the shooter’s home, and 7 students and teachers at his school.  The boy was described as a ‘loner and chronic gamer’.  Previous news reports indicate that in fact all mass shooters are gamers, but of course parents, not all gamers are shooters! Extensive research dating back to the 1990’s has clearly documented the causal effect of violent media content on aggression, with the American Academy of Pediatrics in 2009 declaring media violence as a public health risk. Game Transfer Phenomena where gamers carry perceptions from the virtual game into real life, is now documented with research studies. With all this evidence showing harmful effects of video games, why does society continue to ignore the concurrent escalation of physical and sexual violence? The purpose of this article is to raise public awareness regarding the causal relationship between video gaming and both physical and sexual violence. It is imperative at this time that parents, teachers, health professionals, and governments take immediate steps toward a massive public health campaign, and enact a ban of all violent media content for children under the age of 12.

    More than one a day. That is how often, on average, mass shootings (four or more people dead) occurred in the United States in 2015, leaving a total of 462 people dead and 1,314 wounded.  With the escalating rise in video gaming, extensive research is documenting concurrent rise in aggression and violence. A 2010 meta-analysis of over 1000 studies on the effects of media violence by Craig Anderson and colleagues, reports statistically significant effects of violent video games on aggressive behavior, aggressive cognition, aggressive affect, physiological arousal, empathy/desensitization, and antisocial behavior.  In 2009 the American Academy of Pediatrics reports media violence is causally linked to child aggression stating “Although shootings in schools around the world periodically prompt politicians and the general public to focus their attention on the influence of media violence, the medical community has been concerned with this issue since the 1950s. The evidence is now clear and convincing: media violence is 1 of the causal factors of real-life violence and aggression. Therefore, pediatricians and parents need to take action.”

    Research literature explains the underlying mechanism linking media violence to aggression, which is termed Game Transfer Phenomena (GTP), defined as a physiological state where gamers retain perceptions and act out behaviours endemic in the game.  A 2015 study of 2362 gamers between the ages of 18-22 years by Angelica B Ortiz de Gortari and Mark Griffiths from Nottingham Trent University reported the five areas of ‘real life’ human function that were altered following video game play (excerpted from linked research).

    • Altered visual perception: 77% retained video game imagery with eyes closed; 31% with eyes open.
    • Altered auditory perception: 65% misinterpreted real life sounds as those coming from a video game.
    • Altered body perception: 29% reported sensation of mind being disconnected from their body.
    • Automatic mental processes: 63% still in mind set of video game following play.
    • Actions and behaviors: 40% acted out behavior and activities influenced by the video game.

    A 2016 study by Ohio State researchers concluded that “People who have a steady diet of playing these violent video games may come to see the world as a hostile and violent place.” Brad Bushman, professor of communication and psychology at OSU, continues, “These results suggest there could be a cumulative effect” in making video game players more aggressive and violent over the long term as well as over the short term.

    Aggression acted out as a result of video game immersion is not only of the physical type, but sexual violence as well due to graphic sexual imagery imbedded in gaming. Sexual and physical violence increases in proportion to violence in video games, by media, and in advertising.  The recent explosion in pornography viewing has fueled both the demand for more depraved and illegal sexual imagery, as well as the supply chain for the international sex trade. Projected rises in child and domestic sexual abuse are anticipated if not already documented, as immersion in media violence grows ever more prevalent. The viewing of video game pornography by very young children, has born witness to concurrent rise in sexual violence of children against children. One only has to read the manifesto by Elliot Rodger who in 2014 shot and killed six people in Santa Barbara, California, to clearly understand the impact of early and prolonged exposure to physical and sexual media violence.  While these shooter atrocities are well documented by the media, there has been scant to no attention given to the relationship between acts of violence and playing video games.

    Game Transfer Phenomena is routinely observed by myself and colleague in daycare/preschool, school and clinical settings, characterized by the following: video game speak e.g. “I’ll shoot you with my AK47”, explosive and sudden violence, zoned out affect, disconnection from reality, hypervigilance to auditory and visual stimuli, and resolving conflict with aggression. Managing student violence is rapidly becoming a major concern in schools world-wide, as is managing and  confiscating cell phones from students who are using them inappropriately. What happens when children, and even toddlers are repeatedly exposed to media violence at a young age by watching or playing violent video games with their siblings or Dad? Will the resulting aggression from early exposure to media violence, be more frequent, intense, or longer in duration? Will early and prolonged exposure to media violence increase incidence of already epidemic levels of mass shootings?

    Sexual and physical violence against women and children is rising. Rape crisis centres now exist on military bases and university campuses. Mass shooting occurrence is now daily in the U.S. Graphic and explicit violent physical and sexual imagery is everywhere…in newspapers, billboards, commercials, cartoons, TV sitcoms, movies…it’s everywhere. The need to immediately enact a public awareness campaign regarding the impact of media violence on aggression is imperative. Putting a stop to the unrestricted proliferation of violent physical and sexual media content, is long overdue. Forward this article to your provincial or state health, education, and social service ministries and departments today, asking for a ban on all violent media for children under the age of 12 years.