Family News and Events

Family News and Events
Lonely scarecrows, grannies, and the Cork puppet festival

It’s not every day there’s an opportunity to see a puppet show, especially a professional production involving a lonely but imaginative scarecrow and an unpredictable granny.

Merlin Puppet Theatre will bring ‘No One’s Land’ to Cork for the Cork Puppetry Festival 2019 on August 3 at 3pm in Middle Parish Hall Community Centre on Grattan Street.

No One’s Land tells the story of a scarecrow who one day comes to life. Stuck in the middle of a field with nothing but the bird’s for company, he entertains himself using the power of his imagination. With well-crafted puppets, and visual effects organisers say No One’s Land will delight kids and adults alike.

The show will last 50 minutes.

Granny and the Salmon of Knowledge, another puppet show for children ages 3-9 includes a lost dog and a wolf on the prowl, which is expected to be lively and interactive. It takes place from 11am-12pm on the same day in Cork at The Crawford Art Gallery Lecture Hall, Emmett Place.


Research investigates why women more affected by Alzheimers

Scientists are beginning to understand why Alzheimer’s disease affects more women than men and why the disease seems to progress more quickly in women’s brains.

The explanation appears to involve social, biological and genetic differences, researchers reported last week at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference in Los Angeles.

One study looked at sex differences involving a toxic protein called tau, which tends to spread like an infection through the brain.

“We think it goes from neuron to neuron and goes from one part of the brain to the next part,” says Sepideh Shokouhi, a research assistant professor of psychiatry at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

Researchers used special brain scans to compare tau in the brains of more than 400 men and women. Some had mild cognitive impairment, a memory problem that often precedes Alzheimer’s.

“We saw a more spread-out pattern in women with mild cognitive impairment than men,” Shokouhi explained.


Charcoal toothpaste: Is it a white lie?

Many people would associate charcoal with barbecues and as a fuel, but nowadays ‘activated charcoal’ is being used as a toothpaste, but is this really what’s best for your teeth?

Charcoal-based toothpastes, which claim to whiten teeth, are a “marketing gimmick” which could increase the risk of tooth decay and staining, says a review in the British Dental Journal.

The charcoal products, which are increasingly popular, often contain no fluoride to help protect the teeth.

And there is no scientific evidence to back up the claims they make, the authors say, and excessive brushing with them can do more harm than good.

They advise people to go to their dentist for advice on bleaching, or whitening, their teeth adding that it’s better to stick to using a regular fluoride-based toothpaste.

Charcoal was first used for oral hygiene purposes in ancient Greece, as a way of removing stains from teeth and disguising unpleasant odours from diseased gums.