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Health and Welness Essay

Introduction

World Health Organization defines health as a state of complete physical, mental and social well being. They state that it is not merely the absence of infirmity. In providing a holistic health one must therefore take into consideration all the potential contributing factors affecting a person’s well being. The aspect of holistic health in the traditional medical practice upholds that all the aspects of human needs should be taken into account in order to realize a healthy individual. To achieve a state of well being, the adults must therefore eat, exercise and sleep well. The old people must also posses a good sense of self and have a loving support network and be determined to continue with personal growth.

Multidimensional Concept of Health as it Relates to Adulthood

The multidimensional aspects of wellness that relate to the adults are six in number. These include the emotional aspects which entails their feelings, their ability to manage stress and to safely go through transitions in life during the adult age. Second is the intellectual dimension which concerns the stimulation of the mind and the mental capacity of the adult people. The third dimension is the occupational dimension which involves how the adults use their ability to contribute in different fields (Cancer Prevention Research Centre, 2011).

The fourth dimension is physical dimension which involves taking necessary action to maintain health. Fifth is the social dimension of health which involves the adult’s ability to connect and interact with others. Last is the spiritual dimension of wellness which involves seeking of spiritual centered beliefs by the adults.

However, there are various barriers that have been identified as posing challenges to the attempts made towards promoting adult wellness through holistic health. For example, many adults doubt their own ability to improve their health /function making it hard for them to fit into the recommended life styles (Cancer Prevention Research Centre, 2011).

 There are various actions that can be taken to ensure the holistic health in adults and to promote their wellness. Such measures involve performing holistic assessment and changing the negative attitude of both the public and the older people themselves. The outcomes should also be directed to improve their health. The older adults and their caregivers should also be taught about various old care practices (Cancer Prevention Research Centre, 2011). Policies should also be put in place to promote the wellness of the adult’s caregivers and that of the others involved in the provision of care for the old people.

Difficulties Associated with Behavioral Change

There various difficulties experienced by the individuals who attempt to change their behaviors as prescribed right for health reasons. Such challenges are rampant in changing of behaviors such as smoking, eating patterns, physical activity and the adherence to pharmacological therapy (American College of Cardiology Foundation, 2002). Majority of the individuals may therefore drop the therapy while some may opt to remain in treatment but fail to follow the prescriptions given. Like in treatments, one may decide to vary/change the prescribed dosing. Some individuals may also altar the prescribed dosage intervals while others may reduce or take excess dosage.

Many scholars have seen the main cause of difficulty in behavior change as found in the negative aspects of the therapeutic regimen itself. The challenges faced by the majority of people may include a long duration therapy, complexity of the regimen, therapy of symptomatic conditions and lack of immediate or perceived benefits (American College of Cardiology Foundation, 2002).

Sometimes various people are also discouraged by high financial and social costs associated to such processes. An example is a process which requires one to stay away from his family for along duration and the processes which require one to deviate from his or her cultural patterns. The success of the process of behavior change in such cases is dependent on the level of value an individual attach to such values (American College of Cardiology Foundation, 2002).

Several aspects of the behavioral change call for preventive interventions where life long therapy for an asymptomatic condition may be associated with high cost. Such cases may also have side effects especially in the case of medication. American College of Cardiology Foundation (2002) asserts that certain individuals also lack the understanding of the benefits provided by the behavior change or therapy. Other factors may be those related to the malfunctioning of the organs.

Some individuals may suffer from memory impairment experienced by the patient, and the somatic side effects of medications. The cognitive variables such as the patient’s attitude towards medication intake and the self efficacy may also affect adherence to health medications. Others may also fail to follow the prescription when they are depressed or anxious. Some people are also naturally hostile and may oppose such approaches to change of behavior such as therapy (American College of Cardiology Foundation, 2002).

Some patients make decisions based on their own personal cost benefit analysis. They weigh the cost and the risk of each treatment against their own perceived benefits. The solution therefore lies in establishment of more open relationships between the therapists and their patients (American College of Cardiology Foundation, 2002).  

Trans-theoretical Model of Health Behavior Change

This is a model that seeks to develop effective interventions to promote health behavior change. The model integrates the key constructs from other theories. It describes how people either modify or acquire a problematic behavior (Cancer Prevention Research Centre, 2011). It discusses the process of change in stages taking into account both the behavioral and cognitive activities that affect the change process. The model focuses on the individual’s decision making as influenced socially as in the case of peers or by biological influences such as emotions cognition and behavior (Cancer Prevention Research Centre, 2011).

It discusses the process of change as beginning from the pre-contemplation stage. At this stage the individual is not intending to take any action towards changing the behavior. The individual at this stage lacks full information about the possible consequences of their behavior.

The second stage is the contemplation stage. At this stage there is intention by people to change within the next six months. At this stage, the individual is aware of both the disadvantages and advantages of changing their behaviors. They are thus involved in balancing the costs and the benefits expected to accompany their change in behavior (Cancer Prevention Research Centre, 2011).

The third stage is the action stage. The individual reaches this stage after undergoing a series of modifications in his life styles for a period of more than six months. An example of observable changes at this level may include reduction in the number of times one smokes in a day.

The last stage is the maintenance stage.  Cancer Prevention Research Centre (2011) explains that this is the stage at which people avoid going back to their past behaviors. Such people are less tempted to revisit their initial behaviors and have become more confident of their current life styles.

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Health issues facings young Adults in today’s Society

There are numerous health problems facing young adults including sexually transmitted diseases, obesity, abortion associated with teen pregnancy, diabetes, abuse, depression, bulimia, anorexia, cancer and malnutrition. The teens in the modern world are more sexually active leading to the spread of sexually transmitted diseases like HIV/AIDs (Iannelli, 2008).

 Obesity is rampant among the young people because of the change in the components of their diet. The youths in today’s world frequently take fast foods (Iannelli, 2008). Such foods as offered by the McDonalds are more oily and dangerous to the body as they lead to overweight.  The foods have replaced the healthier fruits and vegetables in the young people’s diet.

Today’s young people prefer not to cook due to many entertainment options which make them avoid such responsibilities as cooking. The entertainment devices such as TV and the internet are utilized by various companies like the McDonalds to make their oily food products more appealing to the youths. The today’s youth also lack exercise due to the replacement of sport and exercise with various new technology based forms of entertainment (Iannelli, 2008).

Many of the young people therefore end up with obesity which is rampant among the youths today than before. More complicated are the various heart diseases that results from obesity (Iannelli, 2008). The youths also suffer from various forms of abuse which is observed to be on the rise. Noting that the youths are the major targets of these vises, many young adults are suffering from various problems related physical, emotional, sexual and mental abuses. Those who are physically abused may experience bladder complications and other related health problems.

Some of the young adults also suffer from attempts to commit suicides. Such acts are intended to induce deaths because of the various emotional and financial challenges that face the young adults. At this stage, one needs to assume the roles and responsibilities which come with adult age and any failure may cause various stress and depression related diseases.

Poverty among various young adults is also responsible for malnutrition related health problems (Iannelli, 2008). The teens are also affected by bulimia and anorexia which negatively affect their eating habits lowering their immunity system. This leaves them more susceptible to diseases. Many youths are also drug addicts making them more vulnerable to diseases. Drug and alcohol abuse has made several youths suffer from liver and heart diseases (Iannelli, 2008).

Importance of Early Detection and Prevention in Chronic and Infectious Disease

Prevention of both the chronic and the infectious diseases help in reducing morbidity and mortality. It will also cut down on health cost at both the individual and national level (Business and Group Health Organization, 2010). Chronic and infectious diseases are today the leading cost of direct health care costs. Some of the common chronic diseases include type 2 diabetes, hypertension and obesity. These diseases are also lowers the productivity of affected individual (Business and Group Health Organization, 2010).

The diseases have also disabled many individuals leading to the increase of burden on different nations and families. Clinical prevention services help the individual to a void the diseases. Clinical preventive services such as cancer screening also allows for the termination of the disease at its earlier stages. Prevention also reduces the spread of infectious diseases to others like in the case of influenza (American College of Cardiology Foundation, 2002).

Ways of Prevention

The major aim of disease prevention is to encourage individuals to avoid or delay disease by practicing healthy lifestyles. It involves the individuals who are identified to be at risk and enable them to benefit from treatment for a condition or a complication about which they are unaware (Business and Group Health Organization, 2010).  It also aims at preventing further effect among individuals whose diseases have been established. Prevention of the disease can therefore be done before its occurrence (primary prevention); it can also be detected earlier and treated to prevent progression (secondary prevention). Lastly it can be done as an intervention to reduce the amount of the disability caused by the disease.

Approaches used in the Prevention of Chronic and Infectious Disease

Clinical preventive services: this entails provision of service in a clinical setting by health professionals such as nurses and health educators (Halpin, Morales & Martin, 2010). “The services are majorly conducted in a face to face set up especially when the patient visits the health centre. Some of such services may also be conducted in groups through the available technologies such as the internet or the phones, (Halpin et al, 2010).

Community based preventive services: it includes any kind of planned activities targeting the public. It can take the form of programs, policies and the laws aimed at addressing various health challenges facing the public. Such activities are normally designed to prevent disease, injury, or promote heath in a group of people. An example is the ban or strict restriction on the use of tobacco (Halpin et al, 2010).

Last is the worksite based preventive services which includes health promotion programs provided to employees and their dependents. The services are intended to improve the health of the employee and prevent the diseases by providing an opportunity for employees to engage in primary prevention activities (Halpin et al, 2010).

The prevention can take many forms of interventions. Screening for example is used to assess the likelihood of the presence of a disease or a condition in an individual who may be initially perceived as healthy. Halpin et al (2010) indicates that it uses services such as X-ray. Testing on the other hand refers to any kind of process that is used to either determine whether a condition is present or to assess the status of the condition.

It may be as simple as questioning the individual or examining any kind of sample such as blood from the individual. It is useful in screening individuals with risk factors though it is not an indication of having a condition. It can also be used to diagnose the individuals with symptoms and signs of a condition to confirm the condition. It is also meant to monitor an individual who is being treated (Halpin, et al, 2010).

Counseling involves an open discussion between a clinician and patient about ways in which a change in his behavior can reduce illness and injury. The patients are provided with the needed skills motivation and knowledge they need to address their risky behaviors (Halpin, et al, 2010).

Immunization intervention: involves protecting an individual form a specific communicable disease. Preventive medications are therefore meant to prevent the onset of disease and the progression of a disease from one stage to another.  The preventive therefore involves both the medication prescriptions and those for lifestyle changes (Halpin, et al, 2010).

Key Recommendations and Strategies for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention

Setting of the healthy public policy: there should be a well designed public policy to harmonize the interventions by the government and those of the private sector. Such policy should clearly define how each of the proposed strategy by any of these stakeholders in the health sector will be involved in various proposed activities. Such policies will help minimize duplication while promoting public health (Business and Group Health Organization, 2010).

Setting community based programs: There is need for more programs targeting the community and scaling up the existing community health based programs. The governments should therefore consider empowering the institutions which are directly in the provision of health services to the public. The community based intervention programs may include the school based, health based and workplace health promotion, community education, public awareness campaign and public health and health care reforms (Business and Group Health Organization, 2010).

Clinical prevention services: The governments should also work towards building the capacity of the existing clinical institutions. This should be done by employing and involving additional health professionals who are more effective in the prevention and early detection of disease.

Legislative measures such as passing of various laws aimed at reducing tobacco use and exposure: there is need for an intervention to decrease the use. There should also be attempts to encourage the physical activity by changing the public policy to increase physical space. Positive health requires that the built environment be designed in a way that encourages physical exercise. There is therefore need for changes in planning and development of the physical environment to include design elements. This will promote the provision of more space for physical exercise.