Approaches to Health
Improving and maintaining the health of a person require appropriate approaches that help to maintain appropriate fitness. The first approach towards good health is to recognize people at higher risk of disease and develop appropriate intervention to minimize the risk (Spector, 2004). It also involves minimizing the average level of risk in the entire population. Public health authorities are required to coordinate certain programs for the people in order to reduce the risk of diseases (Christensen, René Martin, and Smyth, 2004). Such programs involve capacity building and creating awareness among the people in order to reduce chronic diseases, such as hypertension, cancer, diabetes and heart attack (Koenig, McCullough, and Larson, 2001). The population-wide intervention helps to change the whole exposure distribution to reduce the overall level of risk in the population (Kazarian, and Evans, 2001). They also target health determinants aiming to improve health instead of preventing diseases.
There are different definitions concerning health. These include the negative definition, positive definition and holistic definition. Negative definition does not mean that the individual seeking health services is being negative (Curtis, 1999). Instead, it mean that when a person say he or she is healthy it mean his or her absence of illness, tiredness, upset or something that is a sign of not having proper health. Positive definition of health is coined from people’s perception regarding how people look in respect to their physical appearance (Koenig, McCullough, and Larson, 2001). For instance, when people say, “You look very healthy” is a positive definition. It is used when people look at someone. The positive definition is useful in describing the physical fitness of people with regard to their health. However, even when an individual feels free from illness and is physically fit, there is a likelihood that he or she might have emotional problems (Kazarian, and Evans, 2001). According to WHO, health is a state of full social, mental and physical well-being and not necessarily absence of infirmity and diseases.
The WHO definition is valid because it considers all aspects of human life, not just the lack of disease. The holistic definition of health concentrates on the entire health of an individual. The definition might look at the mental aspect, social perspective and the feeling of happiness. There are various factors to consider (Curtis, 1999). These include social, emotional, intellectual and physical aspects. Therefore, because a person is physically fit does not mean that he or she benefits from a clean bill of health in all the other areas (Christensen, René Martin, and Smyth, 2004). Nonetheless, the WHO definition of health is the best relative to the rest as it caters for the factors that affect health in humans (Curtis, 1999).
There are also other definitions in relation to illness. These include disability, diseases, sick role and clinical iceberg. Illness refers to a particular condition that controls the mind or human body from functioning normally (Koenig, McCullough, and Larson, 2001). The definition of illness considers various conditions that prevent the normal functioning of human body (Curtis, 1999). Disability is the outcome of an impairment that can be emotional, mental, cognitive, physical or developmental. A disease is any deviation from normal functioni