For a person with an intellectual disability, social communications and interactions can sometimes be limited or difficult. “We don’t always know how to get the feelings out,” says Alyssa Ruzzin, whose life is the focus of this film. Coping with the challenges of an intellectual disability compounded by epilepsy, she is an inspiring speaker and a forthright advocate for the rights of people with special needs. Over the course of this documentary filmed by her brother, viewers are given an opportunity to learn more about Alyssa’s rich interior life as well as her struggles and triumphs as she deals with going to work, being in a relationship, and other day-to-day activities.
Creasia could not break her opioid addiction and left her family. She tried meth with a friend and recalls getting high on heroin in a portable toilet. She lived in a filthy house filled with drug addicts.
How are fetal alcohol spectrum disorders diagnosed? What are the primary and secondary disabilities associated with FASD? And—most important of all—what is the human cost? This program addresses these questions through the firsthand experiences of Ann Streissguth, director of the University of Washington’s Fetal Alcohol and Drug Unit; Kathy Mitchell, vice president of NOFAS; Erica Lara, who works at a residential drug and alcohol treatment facility designed especially for women with young children; and Erica Gitis-Miles, a college student who has FASD. The in utero effects of alcohol are considered as well, as are the facial, bodily, neurological, cognitive, and behavioral characteristics of FASD.
Each year, one hundred children with FAS are born in Denmark. Meet Cecilie, age-21, she lives in a group home for people with disabilities. She prefers to stay in her room and takes steps to deal with her hypersensitivity.
Several factors play a role in alcoholism, a chronic condition that cannot be cured. We learn how alcohol alters behavior and judgment, and how it affects internal organs. Are any amounts of alcohol safe?
In Dr. Eagleman's lab, experiments intended to understand and assist recovering drug addicts are underway. A subject looks at images of cocaine in an MRI machine, attempting to get the brain to take control of its own addiction. Distributed by PBS Distribution.
Dr. Eagleman takes viewers on an extraordinary journey that explores how the brain, locked in silence and darkness without direct access to the world, conjures up the rich and beautiful world we all take for granted. "What is Reality?" begins with the astonishing fact that this technicolor multi-sensory experience we are having is a convincing illusion conjured up for us by our brains. In the outside world there is no color, no sound, and no smell. These are all constructions of the brain. Instead, there is electromagnetic radiation, air compression waves, and aromatic molecules all of which are interpreted by the brain as color, sound and smell. Cutting edge graphics show that data from the outside are rendered into electrochemical signals inside the brain, which map meaningfully onto physical reality. Our experience of reality is an electrochemical rendition of the world outside. Visual illusions are reminders that what’s important to the brain is not being faithful to "reality" but enabling us to perceive just enough so that we can navigate successfully through it. The brain leaves a lot out of its beautiful rendition of the physical world, a fact that Dr. Eagleman reveals using experiments and street demonstrations. Each one of our brains is different, and so is the reality it produces. What is reality? It’s whatever your brain tells you it is.
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