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ⓘ Blog | Health - Health, An apple a day keeps the doctor away, Healing, hazard, survival paradox, Single-use medical devices ..



                                               

Health

The meaning of health has evolved over time. In keeping with the biomedical perspective, early definitions of health focused on the theme of the bodys ability to function; health was seen as a state of normal function that could be disrupted from time to time by disease. An example of such a definition of health is: "a state characterized by anatomic, physiologic, and psychological integrity; ability to perform personally valued family, work, and community roles; ability to deal with physical, biological, psychological, and social stress". Then in 1948, in a radical departure from previous definitions, the World Health Organization WHO proposed a definition that aimed higher: linking health to well-being, in terms of "physical, mental, and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease and infirmity". Although this definition was welcomed by some as being innovative, it was also criticized as being vague, excessively broad and was not construed as measurable. For a long time, it was set aside as an impractical ideal and most discussions of health returned to the practicality of the biomedical model. Just as there was a shift from viewing disease as a state to thinking of it as a process, the same shift happened in definitions of health. Again, the WHO played a leading role when it fostered the development of the health promotion movement in the 1980s. This brought in a new conception of health, not as a state, but in dynamic terms of resiliency, in other words, as "a resource for living". 1984 WHO revised the definition of health defined it as "the extent to which an individual or group is able to realize aspirations and satisfy needs and to change or cope with the environment. Health is a resource for everyday life, not the objective of living; it is a positive concept, emphasizing social and personal resources, as well as physical capacities". Thus, health referred to the ability to maintain homeostasis and recover from insults. Mental, intellectual, emotional and social health referred to a persons ability to handle stress, to acquire skills, to maintain relationships, all of which form resources for resiliency and independent living. This opens up many possibilities for health to be taught, strengthened and learned. Since the late 1970s, the federal Healthy People Initiative has been a visible component of the United States’ approach to improving population health. In each decade, a new version of Healthy People is issued, featuring updated goals and identifying topic areas and quantifiable objectives for health improvement during the succeeding ten years, with assessment at that point of progress or lack thereof. Progress has been limited to many objectives, leading to concerns about the effectiveness of Healthy People in shaping outcomes in the context of a decentralized and uncoordinated US health system. Healthy People 2020 gives more prominence to health promotion and preventive approaches and adds a substantive focus on the importance of addressing social determinants of health. A new expanded digital interface facilitates use and dissemination rather than bulky printed books as produced in the past. The impact of these changes to Healthy People will be determined in the coming years. Systematic activities to prevent or cure health problems and promote good health in humans are undertaken by health care providers. Applications with regard to animal health are covered by the veterinary sciences. The term "healthy" is also widely used in the context of many types of non-living organizations and their impacts for the benefit of humans, such as in the sense of healthy communities, healthy cities or healthy environments. In addition to health care interventions and a persons surroundings, a number of other factors are known to influence the health status of individuals, including their background, lifestyle, and economic, social conditions and spirituality; these are referred to as "determinants of health." Studies have shown that high levels of stress can affect human health. In the first decade of the 21st century, the conceptualization of health as an ability opened the door for self-assessments to become the main indicators to judge the performance of efforts aimed at improving human health. It also created the opportunity for every person to feel healthy, even in the presence of multiple chronic diseases, or a terminal condition, and for the re-examination of determinants of health, away from the traditional approach that focuses on the reduction of the prevalence of diseases.

                                               

An apple a day keeps the doctor away

"An apple a day keeps the doctor away" is a common English-language proverb of Welsh origin. There is no scientific evidence that eating an apple a day has any significant health effect.

                                               

Healing

Healing is the process of the restoration of health from an unbalanced, diseased, damaged or unvitalized organism. The result of healing can be to cure the cause of a health challenge, but one can grow without being cured or heal without "a cure". The profession of nursing has been traditionally concerned with matters of healing, whereas historically the profession of medicine has been concerned with curing. With physical damage or disease suffered by an organism, healing involves the repair of living tissues, organs and the biological system as a whole and resumption of normal functioning. Medicine includes the process by which the cells in the body regenerate and repair to reduce the size of a damaged or necrotic area and replace it with new living tissue. The replacement can happen in two ways: by regeneration in which the necrotic cells are replaced by new cells that form "like" tissue was originally there; or by repair in which injured tissue is replaced with scar tissue. Most organs will heal using a mixture of both mechanisms. It is also referred to in the context of the grieving process. In psychiatry and psychology, healing is the process by which neuroses and psychoses are resolved to the degree that the client is able to lead a normal or fulfilling existence without being overwhelmed by psychopathological phenomena. This process may involve psychotherapy, pharmaceutical treatment or alternative approaches such as traditional spiritual healing.

                                               

Health hazard

                                               

Health survival paradox

The male-female health-survival paradox, also known as the morbidity-mortality paradox or gender paradox, is the phenomenon in which women experience more medical conditions and disability during their lives, but they unexpectedly live longer than men. It is considered a paradox because of the normal assumption that sicker people will die sooner than people who experience less disease and disability. In this case, however, the group of people that experiences the most disease and disability is the one that lives the longest. Records of the female survival advantage can be traced back to the 18th century, but gained popularity and caught the eyes of researchers in the 19th century.

                                               

Single-use medical devices

Single-use medical devices include any medical equipment, instrument or apparatus having the ability to only be used once in a hospital or clinic and then disposed. The Food and Drug Administration defines this as any device entitled by its manufacturer that it is intended use is for one single patient and one procedure only. It is not reusable, therefore has a short lifespan, and is limited to one patient. There are countless types of single use medical devices, ranging from external, such as plastic gumboots, gloves and bandages merely used to assist a patient to more complex and internal devices, consisting of sharp blades, needles and tubes. Both these devices are single used, because of multiple reasons, but mainly, as it came in contact with radioactivity, blood, infection and disease or human tissue and must therefore be terminated. Each country has its own strict legislation regarding medical waste and the reprocessing of medical devices in hospitals and clinics.

                                               

Health hazard

A hazard is an agent which has the potential to cause harm to a vulnerable target. Hazards can be both natural or human induced. Sometimes natural hazards such as floods and drought can be caused by human activity. Floods can be caused by bad drainage facilities and droughts can be caused by over-irrigation or groundwater pollution. The terms "hazard" and "risk" are often used interchangeably however, in terms of risk assessment, they are two very distinct terms. A hazard is any agent that can cause harm or damage to humans, property, or the environment. Risk is defined as the probability that exposure to a hazard will lead to a negative consequence, or more simply, a hazard poses no risk if there is no exposure to that hazard. Hazards can be dormant or potential, with only a theoretical probability of harm. An event that is caused by interaction with a hazard is called an incident. The likely severity of the undesirable consequences of an incident associated with a hazard, combined with the probability of this occurring, constitute the associated risk. If there is no possibility of a hazard contributing towards an incident, there is no several ways. One of these ways is by specifying the origin of the hazard. One key concept in identifying a hazard is the presence of stored energy that, when released, can cause damage. Stored energy can occur in many forms: chemical, mechanical, thermal, radioactive, electrical, etc. Another class of hazard does not involve release of stored energy, rather it involves the presence of hazardous situations. Examples include confined or limited egress spaces, oxygen-depleted atmospheres, awkward positions, repetitive motions, low-hanging or protruding objects, etc. Hazards may also be classified as natural, anthropogenic, or technological. They may also be classified as health or safety hazards, by the populations that may be affected, and the severity of the associated risk. In most cases a hazard may affect a range of targets, and have little or no effect on others. Identification of hazards assumes that the potential targets are defined, and is the first step in performing a risk assessment.

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