The value of health being wealth is as old as the history of mankind. People of all times have their philosophies related to healthcare and they developed the precautions and treatment according to their specified theories. As the changes take place in every aspect of life, the theories of healthcare and causes of diseases were also developed and the new concepts were promoted to replace the old concepts and practices.
This paper casts light upon causes of disease and illness with regard to classical and modern concepts. The paper explains the differences between the two concepts and elaborates how the new concepts are better than the classical ones.
Classical Concepts about Health
The classical statement about health was 'Illness is simply a matter of bad luck, bad judgment, or bad genetics'. This concept was based on biological and psychological factors. If there was any issue with any person, others used to attribute it to biological factors like immunity, inheritance or the psychology which was supposed to be strong enough to make one feel ill. They rather used to think that illness is his destiny or they consider some diseases as genetically inherited.
It was broad daylight that neither the matter of fate falls in the controllable domain of human being, nor a person can change his genetic makeup or inherited diseases. He could, however, control other biological factors which were dependant upon food. For example, a person can enjoy a healthy life if he controls his weight. Proper diet and regular exercise could keep a person healthy and reduce the probability of dying at early age.
This concept was supported by various research scholars. Albert Einstein supported the view of eating vegetables much and said, nothing will benefit human health and increase chances for survival of life on Earth as much as the evolution to a vegetarian diet (International Vegetarian Union, 2011)
There was another scientist named as Dr. Linus Pauling who received two Nobel Prizes and supported the classical thought about health and disease. He said you can trace every sickness, every disease and every ailment to a mineral (a nutrient) deficiency (Natural News, 2008).
As there was much supporting evidence for classical view, it prevailed in the field of health sciences for long period and nobody thought to challenge it.
Modern Concept about Health
The advancements in societies and change in lifestyles led to shatter the old concept of health. It was because, the improved lifestyle blessed people with all required nutrients and nutritious food, still the number of ill people continued to stabilise. In many areas, it even grew. It was also observed that people belonging to similar culture tend to have similar lifestyles and similar diseases.
This observation led health scientists give birth to the modern concept of health i.e. The health of an individual is influenced by socio-cultural issues rather than simply biological and psychological factors. Modern concept emphasized that the old concepts ignored the social factors though they were very important.
Explanation of Modern Concept
Modern concept of health takes into consideration all the conditions which can have possible influence upon the health of the people. It is because; health is a dynamic phenomenon involving all the factors related to a person and his unique style of living. Socio-cultural issues such as gender, race, economic status, age, geographical location and education have considerable impact upon the health of a person. In order to enable a person to enjoy a healthy life, all these variables must be given their due importance.
This concept is supported by the modern international organisations who are actively participating in the field of health. According to World Health Organisation (2012), health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.
Discussed below are the factors of age, gender and education in the context of their relation with health of a person.
Relationship between Gender and Health of a Person
On grounds of socio-culture factors, much research has been carried out in the recent years and huge data is collected to determine cause-and-effect relationship. The evidence concluded so far places men on disadvantages because of higher mortality and early mortality. Men are more prone to chronic diseases like heath attacks. The reason lies in the very nature of the men. All over the world, they are considered strong and not to cry over petty issues. In many societies, the tears of men are considered the symbol of weakness, hence male members of the society to conceal their emotions.
Research states that concealing emotions does not eliminate them. They stay present in the hearth and become the cause of stress and heart attacks. There is a capacity of heart to tolerate shocks and a time comes when even a little shock may cause death of males.
Research states that women are more prone to other diseases requiring therapeutic care. Women have higher rates of acute illnesses and most of them are non-fatal. Men suffer from the pressure of employment and job insecurity while women have other family and financial stresses.
Regardless of gender, the root cause of Diabetes is found in stress. Stress is the outcome of social conditions and it leads to change biological conditions. Due to stress, insulin resistant develops in body. When a person is stressed out, his body actively produces the hormones raising blood glucose level. Consequently, sugar level increases.
Many times, there classical practitioners used to attribute Diabetes with eating many sweets. The only cure they used to recommend was, injecting insulin so that blood sugar level is controlled. It is quite recently that the practitioners have started recommending controlling stress, strengthening nerves, changing life styles and adopting exercise habits so that stress can be controlled efficiently.
Arthritis is more common among females as compared to males. The reason lies in the fact that women have menstrual system and after menopause, their bones start deteriorating.
Relationship between Age and Health of a Person
The female members of society are protected from heart attack during their reproductive age because of their hormonal characteristics. As women approach towards their old age, the chances of heart attach take birth; however, in male members of society, the rate of heart attack is high even in young age.
The old age leads to many diseases both in men and women because of bodily changes. The muscles become weak and calcium metabolism is impaired, consequently tooth decay occurs in old age.
Hearing problem is also seen in old people due to degeneration of the hair cells in ear.
Impairment in the memory is more commonly seen in old age due to reduce functioning of brain. Lung cancer and liver cirrhosis seems to happen in adults due to smoking and alcoholism respectively. Excessive consumption of these objects lead to more fatal and life threatening conditions which are difficult to cure and cause death.
Hair fall, weak eyesight, headache are some diseases common in students due to the burden of education. Some students suffer from beauty problems such as paleness due to weakness, dark circles around eyes due to late night sleep and pimples etc. Students often suffer from stomach problems due to anxiety. They tend to their appetite. Some other students become victim of fever due to fear of examination.
Relationship between Education and Health of a Person
There is established between education and health of a person. This relationship is established on the grounds of awareness about diseases, its precautions and treatment. The more a person is educated, the more he is aware of healthcare facilities and measures. It is the reason the education of mother is considered a guarantee for health…