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September 01, 2003

Check Those Fingers!

An elementary school teacher in Ishikawa Prefecture has a unique way of spotting problems among his students: Toshihiko Omori, a head teacher in the city of Nanao, checks their fingernails for signs of stress. A large, white, crescent-shaped mark in the middle of a nail, for example, usually indicates some kind of major stress such as dealing with a death in the family, exam preparations or bullying. A series of smaller marks may indicate several lesser, but repeated, causes of stress. Omori first noticed the marks appearing regularly on the nails of students who refused to attend school. Over the last nine years, he has found that the signs show up in over 80% of such cases, as opposed to less than 1&#; of students with no problems. He now regularly checks students in an effort to spot problems before they get out of hand. (from a Shukan Bunshun story)

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