Quiz 3: Health Promotion and Disease Prevention
Health can be defined as the absence of disease. Health depends on positive factors such as diet, physical exercise, interaction with environment and the kinds of relationships people maintain. Health education imparts knowledge and awareness of health in individuals. The health education focuses on teaching individuals, communities and populations. Health education explains health related topics such as parental care, improvement of physical fitness, identification of diseases or signs of stroke. Health promotion includes health education and awareness about changing behavior to improve health. Knowledge about diet, lifestyle, and chronic disease factors like smoking, drinking, use of primary health care facilities and involving in the sexual relationships. Some factors influencing health remain constant throughout all ages. Healthy nutrition, regular physical exercise, enough sleep are essential for good health in all stages of life. Avoiding tobacco, drugs, excess alcohol intake and other harmful substances are required for a healthy life style. Mental health is equally important as physical health therefore, condition such as depression, drug or alcohol abuse and physical or mental abuse are monitored carefully. Healthy sexual behavior is much important for women, teenagers or adolescents. The knowledge of sexuality in adolescents should lead to an establishment of long term intimate relations in adulthood. Encouraging improper sexual relations may risk the life by causing lifelong infections such as AIDS. At maturity proper education to girls and boys about sexual maturity, behavior and relationships should be given by parents and teachers. Teens generally tend to exhibit rebel behavior and often are under influence of bad associations. They have some pressure that may affect self esteem and perception. The teenage concerns often concentrate on popularity, attraction and physical appearance. With sexual maturation they are under influence of independence and tend to behave wild by not following the rules such as using seat belts, driving while drinking that may lead to accidents. Adolescence is a period of life to maintain good health and good behavior. The behavior started in this stage of life may become a habit and continue throughout the life. The wrong behavior adopted may cause teenagers to get depressed and several adolescents are often affected by depressions and may commit suicide. Therefore, it is the responsibility of elders, parents, teachers and health care workers to deal adolescents with patience and care and bring awareness in them to choose the right behavior and happy life.
The lifestyle behaviors and disease prevention practices can be done at three levels. The primary prevention includes reducing of risk factor exposure that may cause disease or injury. The preventive measures like diet, physical activity, giving up smoking and safe sexual practices are to be followed. In secondary prevention level early identification and treatment of disease using tools like mammography and Pap tests to prevent cancer. In tertiary prevention level comfort is provided to alleviate pain in a chronic or advanced disease condition. Halting the progression of illness or limiting the disability including rehabilitation and restoration. Primary preventive measures depend on the responsibility of the individuals to practice strictly. The secondary preventive measures are monitored by both the individuals and the health care providers. The tertiary prevention measures are monitored by health care providers and caretakers. In a strict sense the elderly and parents should practice the primary preventive measures without failure in order to educate children in the health perceptive. Therefore, healthy nutrition, physical exercise and required medical attention periodically are the practices should be adopted to get the health benefits.
The standards of living are different in various parts of the world and are thus categorized as developed and developing countries. The health needs of women are different in developing countries from those of women in developed countries. The World Health Organization (WHO) evaluates 10 factors including behavioral and environmental causes affecting health of women in all parts of the world. These include undernourishment, underweight, unsafe sex, high blood pressure, alcohol and drug abuse, unsafe drinking water, sanitation and hygiene, deficiency of iron in food, indoor pollution caused by fuels, high cholesterol levels and obesity. Women of all ages are at risk of underweight and poor nourishment because of poverty in developing countries. This condition is moderate or rarely observed in developed countries. The major risk factor affecting women health is unsafe sex causing HIV/AIDS in developing countries mostly than in developed countries. The antiretroviral treatment that may increase the quality and expectancy of life is not reachable to all sectors in the developing world. The awareness and availability of facilities in developed countries have been successful to maximum extent. Unhygienic environment causing local outbreaks of diseases such as cholera, tuberculosis and viral infections devastating the developing countries and are causing the death of huge populations. Poor sanitation and using polluted water for bathing, drinking and washing purposes, contaminated food sources are the cause of parasitic infection outbreaks. Increasing the availability and affordability of sanitation, safe drinking water, preventive care and vaccination are primary health initiatives to be focused in developing countries to reduce the health risks. The developed countries face the challenges such as high blood pressure, drug and alcohol abuse, physical inactivity and obesity that cause chronic diseases and are leading health risk factors.