Health, as defined by the World Health Organization, is a state of full mental and physical well being and not just the absence of sickness and disease. A number of definitions have been employed over time for determining the quality of health, with some going back to ancient times. These definitions all include elements that are critical to one’s well being such as physical fitness, good diet, reasonable amount of sleep, relaxation, and emotional health. When looking at the world today, many aspects of health and its consequences are becoming a leading cause of stress in people’s lives. Consequently, health education is an important element of ensuring optimal health.
Some health definitions are affected by age and some are affected by culture. For example, it has been considered incorrect for many years that heart disease is primarily an issue of heart problems. The medical definition of heart disease now encompasses strokes, cerebral palsy, and blood clots among others. As a result, a person who is thought to be suffering from a heart condition can actually have very different symptoms than a person who is considered to be suffering from a stroke or cerebral palsy. The same is true for diseases of the digestive system, where certain conditions such as Crohn’s disease may be considered to be part of an individual’s disease even though the symptoms are very different from a person who has appendicitis.
In short, if you believe you are in need of particular services, be sure to seek medical attention immediately. The best way to lead a healthy lifestyle is to adopt a healthy diet, regular exercise, and to manage stress as best as possible. The fact that most people live with chronic conditions shows that there is a need for health educators and professionals to determine the proper definition of these various conditions so that we all remain as healthy as we can be.