How to Stop Touching Your Face + Other Stories
Every week, we corral our favorite wellness stories from around the internet—just in time for your weekend reading.
The New York Times
Rubbing your nose, touching your eyes, and resting your hand on your chin are all common practices, but researchers warn that they vastly increase the risk of contracting viruses. In the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak, this is one thing we can all do: Stop touching your face (and when you do, wash your hands for twenty seconds beforehand). If you’re struggling to quit the habit: Try wearing glasses or use a tissue to make contact instead.
The New Yorker
When organic matter is left to decompose in landfills—where it’s deprived of the oxygen required to break down healthfully—it releases methane into the atmosphere, which contributes to global warming at a massive scale. Which makes reducing, reusing, and recycling our food scraps and yard cuttings just as (if not more) important as doing so with plastics, paper, and metal. But composting—which was once a normal practice in most households—has struggled to regain traction in the US. It’s often considered too difficult, too niche, or just too stinky. For the answer to this problem, we can look to South Korea, where urban policies for mandatory organics recycling has set cities on the path to sustainability.
Post-traumatic stress disorder, which is commonly associated with war veterans and sexual assault survivors, is often marked by flashbacks, emotional distress, obsessive thoughts, and nightmares long after the actual threat has passed. Researchers have found that cancer patients with life-threatening diagnoses can also experience the core symptoms of PTSD while undergoing invasive tests and treatments. This discovery is shaping how psychologists define PTSD and cancer-related treatments.
“More than half the plastic now on earth has been created since 2002, and plastic pollution is on pace to double by 2030,” Tim Dickinson reports for Rolling Stone. Plus, 91 percent of existing plastic has never been recycled, doesn’t biodegrade, and has been shown to have health effects for both humans and wildlife. Read to learn how we got here, where we’re headed, and what we need to do to solve the crisis.