The Dean of the School of Medical Sciences (SMS), Prof. Francis Ofei, has launched the 2018 Brain Awareness week celebrations at the University.
Lunching the week-long celebrations, Prof. Ofei called for the introduction of screening new-born babies for Thyroid deficiencies as done elsewhere to prevent brain complications in children.
To this end, he said: “It is done in the Western world, we have not found remedies to these and need to embrace this by looking out for the causes in autism for example”.
Prof. Ofei said the time has come for Ghana to have a brain awareness month or year to highlight the importance of the organ in order to take good care of it for the benefit of the individual.
The theme for the 2018 celebrations is “Know your Brain and Protect it”.
The Dean commended the organisers for reviving the annual event and hoped that, it would not suffer similar fate as the first celebrations which endured a seven -year break.
Prof. Ofei said “We abuse all manner of drugs, we are taking these common drugs which affect our brains, the central nervous system and other organs but we take them for granted”. He regretted that the audience was mainly people with some medical training and urged the organisers to invite more lay people next time to listen and become aware of the important role the brain plays in the body. “This I believe will help create the needed awareness among the general public about the dangers of some of the bad practices that cause damage to the brain”, she said.
The Head of Department Physiology of SMS, Dr. Alice Brako, said the celebrations formed part of the global campaign to increase awareness of the brain. Dr. Brako was elated that the annual event has been revived and assured that it would not witness any break henceforth.
Dr. Brako said the brain could be compared and contrasted to the computer but it could perform more tasks that the computer could not do like having emotions. “The brain does multitask, it does so many things at a time, computers may not do same. Our brains can suffer damages and can’t be replaced as computer memories”.
She called for the prevention of falling, striking the head by people and assault in general that could cause damages to the brain. For that reason, she advised caregivers and parents to protect children from such acts to safeguard their brains as they grew.