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Twitter is Showing That People Are Anxious and Depressed

On May 31, the most commonly used words on English language Twitter included “terrorist,” “violence” and “racist.” This was two days after George Floyd was killed, and the start of the protests that would last all summer.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, the Hedonometer’s sadness readings have set multiple records. This year, “there was a full month — and we never see this — there was a full month of days that the Hedonometer was reading sadder than the Boston Marathon day,” Dr. Danforth said. “Our collective attention is very ephemeral. So it was really remarkable then that the instrument, for the first time, showed this sustained, depressed mood, and then it got even worse, when the protests started.”

James Pennebaker, an intellectual founder of online language analysis and a social psychologist at the University of Texas at Austin, became interested in what our choice of words reveals about ourselves — our moods, our characters — exactly at the moment when the internet was first supplying such an enormous stockpile of text to draw from and consider.

“These digital traces are markers that we’re not aware of, but they leave marks that tell us the degree to which you are avoiding things, the degree to which you are connected to people,” said Dr. Pennebaker, the author of “The Secret Life of Pronouns,” among other books. “They are telling us how you are paying attention to the world.”

But, Dr. Pennebaker said, one of the challenges of this line of research is that language itself is always evolving — and algorithms are notoriously bad at discerning context.

Take, for example, cursing. “Swear words have changed in the last 10 years,” he said, noting that now, far from necessarily being an expression of anger, cursing can be either utterly casual, or even positive, used to emphasize a point or express an enthusiasm. He is updating his electronic dictionaries accordingly.

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Princess Eugenie Praised Selena Gomez for Showing Off Her Kidney Transplant Scar on Instagram

Photo credit: Samir Hussein/WireImage; Robert Kamau/GC Images - Getty Images
Photo credit: Samir Hussein/WireImage; Robert Kamau/GC Images – Getty Images


At her wedding on October 12, 2018, Princess Eugenie purposefully showed off her scoliosis-surgery scars in a low-backed dress designed by Peter Pilotto and Christopher De Vos. Eugenie, who is now expecting her first child, had an eight-hour surgery for her scoliosis when she was 12.

On Friday, Eugenie posted to praise Selena Gomez for sharing her kidney transplant scar on Instagram. “I thought this was super cool of @selenagomez to show she’s confident of who she is and what she went through after finding it difficult to show her scar,” Eugenie wrote on her Instagram story.

Photo credit: Selena Gomez - Instagram
Photo credit: Selena Gomez – Instagram

On September 24, Gomez posted a photo of herself in a La’Mariette swimsuit in which she showed off her scar from her kidney transplant in 2017. She posted the following as a caption and addressed La’Mariette’s Theresa Marie Mingus.

“When I got my kidney transplant, I remember it being very difficult at first showing my scar,” she wrote. I didn’t want it to be in photos, so I wore things that would cover it up. Now, more than ever, I feel confident in who I am and what I went through…and I’m proud of that. T – Congratulations on what you’re doing for women, launching @lamariette whose message is just that…all bodies are beautiful.”

Eugenie spoke out about her surgery and how it changed her life—and can do the same for others.

“Children can look at me now and know that the operation works,” Eugenie wrote in a statement for the website for Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital, where she had the surgery. “I’m living proof of the ways in which the hospital can change people’s lives.”

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How Much Toothpaste Should You Use? Dentist Goes Viral for Showing How Much You Really Need While Brushing

What’s a toothpaste commercial without a pristine toothbrush and a plump swish of toothpaste across the top of the bristles? Well, get ready to have your mind blown: The amount of toothpaste we should actually be using on our teeth is about a fraction of that—at least according to one dentist on TikTok.

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Dr. Gao Jye Teh, a Malaysian dentist who’s studying at King’s College London, recently went viral on TikTok for sharing some oral health advice, and has become social media’s dental hygiene star in the process. In the TikTok video, he showed viewers—all 6 million of them—what the right amount of toothpaste looks like. For people over 3 years of age, it’s the size of a single pea. (FYI,this is also written on the toothpaste packaging—you know, the stuff nobody reads.)

Tip: You're probably using way more than what's necessary.

© Getty Images
Tip: You’re probably using way more than what’s necessary.

Dr. Gao also shared his video to Instagram, writing in the caption, “Commercials are lying to you! You don’t need to use that much toothpaste.”

Dr. Gao said that using more than a pea-sized amount of toothpaste poses the greatest risk to children who haven’t yet got fully-developed adult teeth. “This is because fluoride, when ingested in large amounts, can cause a cosmetic condition known as dental fluorosis on the developing teeth,” he explained. “The cosmetic implications range from mild [discoloration] to yellow and brown stains to obvious pits in the teeth.”

Geoffrey Morris, DMD, cosmetic and restorative dentist in Boca Raton, Florida, confirmed this to Health, saying, “the recommended amount of toothpaste for adults is about the size of a pea on a soft bristle or electric toothbrush.”

As for kids under age 3, only a “smear” of toothpaste is required—about the size of a rice grain, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That’s to ensure they don’t accidentally swallow a lot of fluoride toothpaste, which isn’t supposed to be ingested.

RELATED: The Best Whitening Toothpaste, According to Experts

Using too little toothpaste can be just as bad as using too much, according to Dr. Gao, because your teeth won’t get the fluoride’s full protective benefits. “The problem with using too little toothpaste is you may not have enough surfactant to create the bubbles that help clean, as well as enough fluoride to protect the teeth,” Dr. Morris says.

Dr. Gao also offered a handy tip: “Once you brush your teeth, you should spit out the excess and not rinse your mouth with water. This is because the fluoride in the toothpaste takes time to act on your teeth.”

If you like to use mouthwash as part of your oral hygiene routine, Dr. Gao recommends using one that contains fluoride at a different time from brushing, as this will increase the amount of fluoride exposure and help to remineralize your teeth. “Seek advice from your dentist to decide which type [of mouthwash] you are most suited for,” he suggested.

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