Concepts of health
Depending on the individual there can be many different views on what we perceive to be ‘ill’. Some factors that we consider to be a healthy individual include: Being active and fit, having good relationships with people, having a good diet, and being mentally stable. In conjunction with this there are some factors that we perceive to be ‘ill’ also, these include: having a cough and cold, meaning terminally ill, and being physically non-active. Sociologists find it difficult to define what ill means. Health can be defined in negative terms as ‘the absence of disease’. A negative definition, regarding health on terms of being able to perform certain day to day tasks, such as cooking etc., health can also be defined in a positive way- such as regarding health as feeling fit and well. The Who- had a saying about the concepts of health and this is what they said: ‘not merely an absence of disease, but a state of physical, mental, spiritual and social well-being. Which is extremely hard to achieve in anyone’s life? Health care professionals usually use a holistic outlook on things- so they look at a subject as a whole rather than in particular groups. And what they look at is the care of their patient’s care and their support of their patients. They see their role as addressing the needs of the whole person rather than single issues or identified problem. Mildred Blaxter- 1990- interviewed almost 10,000 people in her large scale study on health and lifestyles. She identified three strands to people understanding of health and well-being. Sociologists use a great deal of information about death rate, visits to GP’s, surgeries, incidence of serious diseases, admissions to metal health units and statistics. This data is often analysed by social class, gender, occupation, ethnicity and geographic location. The reason they collect this type of data is because it is documented as so fourth easier to look at statistics and gather information. The...
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