Did you know that most of the scientific community agrees we are in the middle of a mass extinction right now? We are currently in the middle of the sixth extinction.

If you want to learn more about this, I highly recommend The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History, which analyzes mass extinction events and argues why we are dealing with one as we speak. It was a bestseller, by the way, and it won a Pulitzer Prize.

But there's a wealth of scary facts out there... is knowledge necessarily power?

We'll get back to you on that.


People shared their thoughts after Redditor Lioniz asked the online community:

"What's a scary science fact that the public knows nothing about?"

"Insect population..."

"50% of insects have disappeared since 1970. Insect population is down 27% in the last 30 years. Declining between 1 and 4% each year depending on the genus."

Magoopoo

This is true, and it's unnerving many scientists as we continue to deal with the effects of climate change and habitat loss.

"Heart muscle cells..."

"Heart muscle cells don’t reproduce much in adults (roughly 1% per year). If you have an infarction or other stressor that kills those cells, then your heart wont be able to “grow” new cells to replace the dead ones."

"This is why patients with diseases like heart failure end up needing a heart transplant. Trying to get this process to happen is a major goal for many cardiac researchers."

Keiterchip

This is fascinating.

Hopefully one day scientists can figure this out.

"Anthrax spores..."

"Anthrax spores can remain viable for decades in the soil or animal products such as dried or processed hides and wool."

arliman

The paranoia this instilled... I think I'm going to fall down a black hole reading more about this later.

"When doing an autopsy..."

"When doing an autopsy they don’t put the organs back where they belong, they are all stored in the belly."

Chariatid

I mean, this makes sense to me.

It's more convenient, isn't it?

"Scientists don't exactly know..."

"Scientists don't know exactly how Acetaminophen works to relieve pain and reduce fever. They have an idea but nothing for sure. But yet it's the most commonly used pain reliever in the world."

b-wheezie

These Low Effort Jobs Have Surprisingly High Salaries | George Takei’s Oh Myyy

Have you ever worked one of those jobs that paid you to kinda sit there? If you have, you know the joy that comes with watching the entirety of Breaking Bad ...

This is indeed true!

A few scientists have posited that it might have something to do with chemical messengers of inflammation and pain, but that's just one suggested explanation and there isn't a straight answer just yet.

"Trauma can cause..."

"Trauma can cause structural changes to your brain. PTSD is literally an injury."

PsychologicalBend467

It is indeed.

Mental health should be a top priority.

Thankfully, much has changed in the way society treats it and responds to it.

"I only recently..."

"I only recently learned that when you get sunburned, the burn isn’t because of skin cell damage. The UV radiation damages the DNA. Then the skin cells decide to commit suicide and fall off so that the damaged DNA doesn’t produce cancer. I’ll never be mad at my skin peeling again."

The3Weed

I had a bad sunburn a few months back and learned about this.

I upped my sunscreen game.

"Approximately 60%..."

"Approximately 60% (in some reports) of the world's population have the parasite toxoplasma gondii in their brain. For a long time it's thought to have been a benign presence, but recent statistical research shows that it may have an impact on things like levels of anger and rates of accidents and suicide."

nervouscrying

Another thing I'll read about at three in the morning to creep myself out, thanks.

"If your dog..."

"If your dog swims in a lake after receiving a spot on flea treatment - it absolutely decimates the invertibrate population."

pbouree

That's wild!

Keep an eye on your pets, everyone.

The world in which we live is vast and incredible. There's still so much we do not know, but who knows?

Perhaps one day scientists will have the answers to the questions that continue to perplex us. All we can do is wait.

Have some facts of your own to share? Feel free to tell us more in the comments below!

If you or someone you know is struggling, you can contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

To find help outside the United States, the International Association for Suicide Prevention has resources available at https://www.iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres/

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