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“Autumn is the time of year when Mother Nature says, ‘Look how easy, how healthy, and how beautiful letting go can be.’”
– Toni Sorenson  
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  Volume No. 15 Issue No. 9 September 2018  

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Michelle Barrette

  
  By Michelle Barrette
  Publisher

   Fifteen years ago, we started this newspaper with few expectations. Today, we are a solid testimonial for the growth that has happened in Falcon throughout the years. If the community newspaper can survive and thrive for 15 years, growth is evident.
   
   About 14 years ago, we decided to do an annual health care issue every January. You know, the month when many people pledge to exercise, lose weight, eat healthy, etc. Resolutions aside, there is never a shortage of health care issues. And year after year, we are still dealing with the same issues.
   
   In this 2018 health care issue, Bill Radford took on the opioid epidemic. I always find it interesting to note how the United States compares to the rest of the world when it comes to health care. According to a CNBC report in April 2016, about 80 percent of the worldwide opioid supply is consumed in the United States. The U.S. has the highest number of drug-related deaths in the world (United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime — 2016 report).
   
   Breeanna Jent tackled teen depression. A Sept. 14, 2016, U.S. News report showed that the U.S. ranked third for unipolar depressive disorders, following India and China. India, China and the U.S. also are in the top three most affected by anxiety, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, according to the World Health Organization. I couldn’t find any reliable stats for teenage depression worldwide — only that adolescent depression is on the rise worldwide.
   
   Lindsey Harrison touched on dental health in the U.S. and followed up on health issues related to the wind farm in Calhan. She also wrote about technology in the classroom — mainly the effects of cell phones in the classroom. In this month’s article, Lindsey talks about the positive aspects of having cell phones available to kids. Next month, she’ll follow up with the downside of cell phones, including health-related issues.
   
   Speaking of cell phones/technology, I just read today that the World Health Organization, in the drafting of its 11th International Classification of Diseases, is including “gaming disorder” in its list of mental health conditions. The WHO defines the disorder as a “persistent” behavior pattern that results in “significant impairment” in other aspects of life. The criteria for a diagnosis is 12 months of offline or online video game playing along with the above behaviors.
   
   Well, 15 years later, we have upped our expectations of the NFH; and we have some new ideas for 2018. We’ll keep you informed. We will also be asking for your input via a survey — soon. Thank you all for your support these past years — advertisers and readers. We look forward to a great 2018.
   
   Happy New Year! See you in February!
   
   - Michelle
  
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