Sunday, November 14, 2010

What is Health ?

The English word " Health " comes from the Old English word hale, meaning " wholeness, a being whole, sound or well ". In addition, Health can be defined as " The state of the organism when it functions optimally without evidence of disease or abnormality ". 

According to World Health Organization (WHO), " Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity." or Health is " a resource for everyday life, not the objective of living. Health is a positive concept emphasizing social and personal resources, as well as physical capacities."

Meggitt (2001: 1) discusses health in holistic terms, and suggests that being healthy constitutes a number of different physical, mental and social, emotional, environmental and spiritual states. These are being fit, not being ill, being able to adapt, living to an old age, and being happy.

1. Environmental health
Environmental health refers to the general health of the society in which we live. In areas of famine – 
where the first priority for health is to obtain enough food – people may be denied access to health. Poverty and overcrowded living conditions are all negative aspects of environmental health.

2. Physical health
This is the easiest aspect of health to measure. It involves the physical functioning of the body and includes the growth and physical development of the baby and child.

3. Emotional health
Emotional health involves how we express emotions such as joy, grief, frustration, hurt and fear. This ability to express our own emotions and to react to other people’s emotions leads on to coping strategies for anxiety and stress.

4. Spiritual health
Spiritual health involves personal, moral codes of conduct – as well as religious beliefs and practices.

5. Mental health
Mental health involves our ability to organise our thoughts logically, and is closely linked to emotional and social health.

6. Social health
Social health involves the way we relate to other people and form relationships.

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