Health is a condition where disease and infirmity aren’t present. This may be caused by genetic predisposition, healthy habits, or the lack of exposure to diseases. A number of definitions have been used for various purposes since ancient times. According to Merriam Webster’s dictionary, “health” can mean being well and fit, good to excellent, or well managed with proper care and protection.
There are numerous theories that deal with the concept of health. It has been seen as the state wherein all the organs function well. A person with high levels of well-being experiences high physical fitness and mental health, while someone with low well-being has low physical fitness and low mental health. In contrast, there are also cases when good health is accompanied with physical illness. Individuals who are healthy and do not get sick often may sometimes develop serious illnesses like cancer, leukemia, and diabetes.
One theory about the concept of well-being relates it to the risk factors of mortality. These include your past history of illness and death, your present health condition, and your lifestyle. According to this theory, those individuals who have a good history of illness, death, and injury are more prone to early death because of their poor wellness.
Another theory on the concepts of health considers social determinants. Social determinants are things beyond our control. These include genes, social settings, and discrimination. It has been found that health disparities are most prominent among the mentally ill, minority, poor, and economically disadvantaged individuals. This concept of social determinants is believed to be responsible for the discrepancies in life expectancy and health conditions between these groups.
The good news is that lifestyle choices can help prevent chronic diseases and illness. These include proper diet and physical activity. It is also important to make wise decisions regarding tobacco and alcohol use, diet, and regular exercise. Some experts believe that the major cause of many communicable diseases is due to poor dietary choices and lack of exercise.
A fourth element of the public health concept relates to stigma and shame. Stigma and shame are associated with several types of illness and disease. When a person experiences persistent illness or becomes an outcast because of their illness, this will likely lead to negative social environment. This could increase the likelihood that a person will not seek treatment, or if they do seek treatment, they will fail to realize their full potential to live a healthy, productive life.
A final definition of wellness relates to mental wellness. It is an individual’s internal knowledge, values, and thoughts about his or her own health and well being. Health education aims to enhance the individual’s awareness about their own health. This includes individuals’ internal resources for coping with stressors and the ability to modify thought and behavior patterns in response to environmental factors. In addition, this also encompasses an individuals’ ability to maintain social relationships within the context of a diverse social environment.
In order to evaluate health and its related concepts, health education combines prevention, early detection, and curative services. Prevention services encompass educating people about the risks of chronic conditions, such as heart disease or diabetes, and the ways to prevent these conditions from developing into chronic conditions. Early detection refers to the identification of heart disease or other chronic conditions. And, curative services deal specifically with illnesses and diseases that have developed into chronic conditions, such as lung disease or cancer.
All these are important components of a comprehensive definition of health. These elements share common themes, which include identification of the individual’s underlying resources and motivation to maintain health, developing a comprehensive plan for curative services, and education about the mental health of the person. Emphasis is often placed on the development of preventive measures, with corresponding education about the risks of developing certain illnesses or chronic conditions. Prevention may involve changing behaviors, lifestyles, and environments.
The components of mental and physical wellness refer to both the body’s physical condition and its daily living activities. Physical wellness is an individuals’ capacity to function normally in social situations. Mental wellness, on the other hand, is grounded on one’s capacity to manage or control one’s thoughts, feelings, behavior, and emotions in everyday life. Mental illnesses, on the other hand, refer to any physical illness that leads to deterioration of one’s mental condition. Examples of mental illnesses include depression, psychosis, schizophrenia, post-traumatic stress disorder, bipolar disorder, and bipolar affective disorder.
Overall, health defines wellness through the complete well-being of an individual. Wellness may involve physical, mental, and emotional aspects. The interdependence of these elements makes it possible for one to become afflicted with one disease while at the same time engaging in physical activities that may lead to a loss of wellness in the other two areas.