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The power of the dog breeds: Detecting PTSD stress levels by smelling humans’ breath

Research reveals that dogs can detect trauma stress by smelling humans’ breath

The power of the dog breeds: Detecting PTSD stress levels by smelling humans’ breath
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#Dogbreeds #PTSDAwareness #ServiceDogs #CanineDetection #MentalHealthSupport #BreathAnalysis

In a ground-breaking study, scientists found that dogs can remarkably identify acute stress only by smelling people’s breath. This research provides new avenues for helping individuals with PTSD. But let’s take a moment to define PTSD before we go into this exciting news.

PTSD [post-traumatic stress disorder]:

“PTSD, also known as post-traumatic stress disorder, is similar to having a mental bruise after a very difficult event. It’s more than simply feeling terrified or depressed; it’s as if your mind becomes trapped in a loop and keeps playing back the unpleasant memories. It can be brought on by frightening incidents, violent crimes, or even natural calamities. PTSD sufferers may have difficulty falling asleep, get jittery in response to loud noises, or experience constant anxiety. However, after going through something incredibly difficult, it’s quite common to feel this way. The favorable tidings? With the correct assistance and care, it is possible to recover and feel better.”

An intriguing finding from this research:

In stress detection, a fascinating discovery has been made: dogs are remarkably good at identifying humans who are stressed out just by smelling them. Under the direction of Laura Kiiroja of Dalhousie University, a team effort led by the clinical psychology lab of Dr. Sherry Stewart and the canine olfaction lab of Dr. Simon Gadbois explored this novel finding, providing insight into a potentially transformative finding in the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder.

The study on trained dog breeds:

This study highlights a novel approach wherein trained dogs could identify volatile organic compounds (VOCs) associated with PTSD symptoms directly from a person’s breath, even though trained dogs are already helping detect PTSD stress through conventional methods based on behavioral and physical cues. The implications are significant because they point to a new way that service dogs can help people who are struggling with the incapacitating consequences of PTSD.

Impressively, 90% accuracy indicated:

In an effort to understand these phenomena, scientists recruited 26 human subjects. More than half of the participants showed signs of high levels of stress related to PTSD. The study produced amazing results by using a variety of breath samples taken in various settings besides providing 25 pet dogs—including star performers Ivy and Callie—with intense scent-detection training. With an astounding 90% accuracy rate in differentiating between samples that were stressed and those that weren’t, these skilled dogs demonstrated the possibility of earlier intervention and more focused care.

This research adds to our knowledge of canine olfaction:

It was striking how differently Ivy and Callie approached things, suggesting that they were sensitive to distinct stress signs in different ways. Callie seemed to tilt toward hypothalami-pituitary-adrenal axis hormones like cortisol, but Ivy was more sensitive to sympathetic-adreno-medullar axis hormones like adrenaline. These discoveries not only advance our knowledge of canine olfaction but also have important ramifications for improving service dog training guidelines in order to better meet the various demands of those suffering from PTSD.

Need for a larger scale studies to ascertain the reliability in diverse contexts:

Although this work represents a major step forward, the researchers emphasize that more extensive research is still needed to confirm the validity of stress VOC detection in a variety of settings. There is much more potential for early identification and intervention in the management of PTSD that might be unlocked by further research into the particular hormonal mechanisms underpinning dogs’ detection skills.

Our faithful dog breeds are essential in maintaining human mental health:

Essentially, this study provides a window into a future in which our devoted dogs will become even more essential to maintaining mental health. A hopeful future for managing post-traumatic stress disorder and the vital contributions of service dogs is being heralded by the possibility of earlier identification and more individualized help as research and understanding increase.

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