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  • Try and see if you can find the real tablet on this screen. If you guessed any of these,

  • you're wrong, because these are all tic-tac's, but if I was a medical professional handing

  • over some tablets to cure your headache or the morning after pill (you wouldn't want

  • that to be a tic-tac), how do you know that it's the real deal?

  • This is where the placebo effect takes place. Could a doctor give you a pill which is actually

  • a sugar pill (or tic-tac if you say it's supposed to be minty) and cure their patient?

  • and research points to us being able to take a pill

  • In one study conducted around the placebo effect it was found that if doctors said that

  • the patient would "feel better in a few more days" that patients recovery was increased

  • than saying something like "this isn't going to help you at all." Some studies have even

  • shown that the amount you have to take, the size, how many you have to take a day, what

  • box the drug comes in and even the colour of the pill can make the effect stronger or

  • weaker. Even things like getting an injection instead of taking a pill can have a stronger

  • effect even though they're all medically ineffective. So does it mean just can't heal our body?

  • Some research suggests that the placebo effect works because the body releases endorphins,

  • not to be confused with dolphins. Endorphins are the body's natural pain killers and could

  • be why the placebo effect works quite well when we're trying to get rid of pain.

  • One study found that those who were given a real drug which increased their hormone

  • level had the same amount of increase when they were given a placebo tablet later on.

  • The same study found that those who didn't get the initial hormonal increase drug didn't

  • see their hormone levels increase.

  • The placebo effect doesn't work for everyone, but it's interesting to think that perhaps

  • if we learnt more about it we could eventually cure ourselves with the power of our brains,

  • which would be much more useful than having to deal with the side-effects of the tablets

  • we take today.

Try and see if you can find the real tablet on this screen. If you guessed any of these,

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B1 placebo pill effect tic tac tac tic

The Placebo Effect

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    Ingo Yang posted on 2014/01/23
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