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Theories of health and illness

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Theories of health and illness Health is difficult to define and there are many different theories of health, in this assignment I will be trying to describe and explain these theories and the benefit of epidemiological studies in identifying illness. So what is the definition of health, is it just the absence of illness and disease or living a healthy life style and being in a good state of mind. The world health organisation is formed by the members of the United Nations they believe that ''Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity (and a socially and economically productive life)'' (WHO, constitution of the world health organisation, Geneva, 1946). This definition is saying that it's not just the absence of disease or illness that is good health, but its being mentally healthy and socially comfortable as well. which I agree with, as leading a healthy life isn't just not getting ill, its being mentally well, happy, secure, stress free (most of the time) and living in a safe, sheltered and comfortable environment, also getting sleep, eating well, having access to medical and dental care, good hygiene and just having a good self well-being. ...read more.


There are lots of ways in which a persons emotional state can effect there health if people are depressed or stressed they are more likely to smoke, drink, eat unhealthily and have more accidents through not concentrating. The biological theory doesn't take into account the psychological affects that trauma, stress or depression can have on a person's health, unlike the emotional theory which does look at the individual's circumstances and emotional state. There are quite a few theories on mental health most are subjective and all are not measurable there have been many arguments about the causes and effects of mental illnesses but none have been proved. Epidemiology Epidemiology is the study of disease in populations, it shows how disease occurs in different groups of people and it looks back on when and where the disease first started and the people who are at risk. Epidemiology is very beneficial in understanding the causes of illnesses as the information is used to plan strategies for delivering healthcare and evaluate ways to prevent the illness, epidemiology also develops best practice in managing existing disease this prevents the spread of disease which could cause a pandemic (worldwide spread). ...read more.


sexual transmission of HIV is the most common form of contracting it, epidemiology has shown that medical procedures, the introduction of widespread drug treatment and continued stress on 'safe sex' will be needed in Africa to stop the spread of HIV.(Rothman 2002) Conclusion Health is hard to define but the World health organisation has really helped people understand what health is by health promotion. I agree with there definition they take into account illness and disease and also you mental and social health, which I think should be taken into account when viewing someone's health. There are many different factors effecting health including environmental, biological and sociological factors which can all contribute to ill health. Epidemiology is a major part of health and health prevention, this assignment shows that without it we wouldn't understand how disease is spread and be able to prevent epidemics and pandemics and even cure some diseases. Theories of health can be proved with epidemiological studies. Epidemiology, health promotion and health theories all link together to prevent, change and provide education for health and disease. Epidemiology helps us research and understand health and disease, which induces health promotion, which then can minimises risks because more people become aware, theories of health and epidemiology work together to minimise incidence. ...read more.

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