In the first half, science teacher, attorney, and a founding editor of Age of Autism, Kent Heckenlively, discussed his journeys into the minefield of autism. He has uncovered documents that he says comprise a government cover-up, putting a vast number of American children at great risk to trigger autism once inoculated with the measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) vaccine. Federal whistleblower William Thompson, a statistician at the CDC, could be compared to Edward Snowden, he remarked. In 2013, Thompson reached out to biology professor Dr. Brian Hooker, who legally recorded lengthy phone conversations between them, delineating the CDC's deception and corruption surrounding vaccines, and this became the basis for the documentary Vaxxed.
Heckenlively cites the passage of the 1986 National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act, giving complete immunity to pharmaceutical companies, as the beginning of the autism disaster. He further pointed toward the current policy of giving vaccines to children aged 1 and younger as a source of problems, as in the past they waited until kids were at least three or four years old, and their immune systems were more developed. Heckenlively has traced the enormous rise in autism cases to the changes in vaccine policy-- in the 1980s, 1 in 10,000 kids had the disorder, whereas today it is 1 in 50. He also stated that this past August, Donald Trump met with some autism advocates, including Andrew Wakefield, and that Trump's selection of activist Robert Kennedy Jr. to head a special vaccine commission is quite promising.
In the latter half, orthopedic spinal surgeon Dr. David Hanscom talked about the problem of chronic pain, and how to control or eliminate it. It is often not the structural ailment itself that causes chronic pain, but the neurological and psychological response to it, he explained. The medical world, he noted, overlooks the fact that in order to relieve pain, the person must get to the root of their pain – anxiety – and the amped up nervous system that accompanies it. Surgery, he's concluded, is not always the answer – in fact in most cases, back and neck surgeries create more pain and problems for the patients.
At least one out of three adults experience chronic pain, and interestingly, neuroscience research has recently shown that the brain memorizes pain impulses, and these can become ingrained in a person. This problem has been called "Maladaptive Neurological Disease," he reported. Hanscom's approach to reducing or conquering pain is multi-faceted and includes getting good quality sleep, diet, exercise, life outlook, and taking control of the problem oneself. "As you calm down the nervous system, you change the pain threshold," he explained. One tip for getting better sleep and reducing anxiety, he suggested, is for people to write down their thoughts, whatever they may be, just before going to sleep, and then tear the paper up without analyzing it.