contraception in accordance with your needs is associate with physical and mental well-being throughout the lifespan.
Although the argument can be made that people are never truly ready to have children, it is clear that timing is everything for humans when it comes to reproduction. Unplanned teen pregnancies create a vicious cycle of welfare motherhood that is difficult to break unless contraception is used to prevent these pregnancies in the first place. Using contraceptives responsibly can clearly contribute to the mental well-being of single young people who enjoy sex but do not want the lifelong responsibility of children yet. It is reasonable to suggest that a single young mother with three or four screaming babies and infants will not enjoy the same level of mental and physical well-being at their peers with no children, and the demands associated with raising these children to adulthood never really go away entirely but rather remain a lifelong responsibility.
Likewise, newly married couples just starting out in life may want to postpone having children until they have finished college, found decent jobs, and bought their first home, also making the association between contraception and mental well-being apparent. By using contraception, married couples are able to sleep soundly at night knowing that their family planning is effective and appropriate. Just as importantly, using appropriate contraception serves other purposes that contribute to physical well-being of women throughout the lifespan as well, including postponing the childbearing years until they are physically ready and preventing pregnancies after they reach an age at which having children is regarded as more dangerous for the mother. In sum, contraception used in accordance with individuals' needs is associated with improved physical and mental well-being throughout the lifespan.
Why communicating effectively in relationships is associated with physical and mental well-being throughout the lifespan.
Some observers suggest that driving in heavy traffic is the most difficult thing that average humans do on a routine basis, but anyone who has been in a relationship can readily testify that communicating effectively with someone else can be the hardest thing most people ever have to do. The need for effective communication exists at every point in a relationship, and extends far beyond mental well-being that results from assurances being made by one partner that the coffee will be made in the morning, the dry cleaning will be picked up and that groceries will be purchased before the beer and chips run out.
On the one hand, communicating effectively in a relationship can contribute to a wide range of positive physical and mental health outcomes, including the trust and nurturing bond that forms between two people over time. On the other hand, though, miscommunications of any type can cause irreparable rifts between people in ways that severely diminish their mental and physical well-being. Conversely, as people improve their communications, their mental and physical well-being will also improve. When two people fail to communicate effectively, though, virtually everything else in their relationship suffers. In some cases, a failure to communicate can be related to inattention or disinterest on the part of one of the partners in the relationship, but it can also be caused by an organic problem such as hearing loss that may be unidentified. Irrespective of its source, anything that detracts from effective communication in a relationship can result in diminished mental and physical well-being. Making the effort to communicate effectively day in and day out, however, requires an ongoing commitment that can be easily eroded if complacency and sloth are allowed to interfere with the communications between two people in a relationship.
Why exploring and understanding your sexual identity (heterosexual, homosexual, bisexual, etc.) is associated with physical and mental well-being throughout the lifespan.
One of the more perplexing aspects of the human conditions is the fluidity of sexuality. Indeed, people's sexual identity is fluid and can change over time, from time to time, and even hour to hour. It is reasonable to suggest that many people may become confused by these powerful forces in their lives that defy easy explanation or understanding, but which compel them to pursue relationships of one type or another that are congruent with their current sense of sexual identity. To the extent that these relationships are consistent with their existing sense of sexual identity will likely be the extent to which their mental well-being is enhanced. When people's mental well-being is enhanced, it follows that their physical well-being will be too since these conditions are inextricably interrelated. For instance, in some cases, people who deny or who are confused by their sexuality may suffer from depression or anxiety in ways that harm their physical well-being.
Moreover, people who suffer from a confused sexual identity may avoid any type of relationship out of a powerful fear of "learning the truth" about themselves. This type of confused sexual identity can further socially isolate them from other people in ways that will also detract from their mental well-being. Likewise, people who do not explore and understand their sexuality in healthy ways may engage in risky behaviors such as unprotected sex or substance abuse that severely detract from their mental and physical well-being. These mental and physical comorbidities are well documented and include increased incidences of sexually transmitted diseases, depression, stress, and even suicide. Taken together, these issues indicate that the fluidity of human sexuality requires an understanding of what motivates people to pursue relationships with others and how these relationships can contribute to improved physical and mental well-being.
Why having current information on sexually transmitted diseases is associated with physical and mental well-being throughout the lifespan.
From a strictly pragmatic perspective, people die from sexually transmitted diseases every day, making the connection between having current information on sexually transmitted diseases and physical well-being apparent. From a mental well-being perspective, though, the connection is more nebulous and can manifest along the entire continuum of individual responses to engaging in unsafe behaviors. For instance, it can be difficult to sleep at night when people are worrying if they have acquired AIDS or another sexually transmitted disease through unprotected sex or other risky behaviors such as sharing a needle for drug injections. Because a wide range of mental health problems are a documented comorbidity of physical diseases, it is therefore important to prevent these outcomes from occurring in the first place. Simple and cost-effective preventive steps such as condoms that can help people avoid sexually transmitted diseases represent the front-line of defense in promoting an enhanced sense of physical and mental well-being, but some people still either lack the current information they need to make informed choices about their sexual practices.
In reality, though, given the enormous amount of resources that have been invested in promoting safe sex practices in recent years, learning about sexually transmitted diseases and taking steps to prevent transmission is a real "no brainer." In sharp contrast to years past, condoms are now sold everywhere, and information about safe sex practices is readily available in print and online. Consequently, it is reasonable to conclude that some people who continue to engage in unsafe sexual practices are doing so intentionally due to cultural or social factors that define an individual's sexual identity at a given point in time.
Why awareness of reproductive options in the event of that one cannot reproduce is associated with physical and mental well-being throughout the lifespan.
Because humans are animals, at a certain point in their lives, the biological clock kicks in and something tells them that it is time to reproduce. For men, the biological clock may kick in very early, while the desire may manifest later for women, but the instinct to reproduce can occur at any point in time. At first blush, to the degree that this desire is satisfied would appear to be…