why health and prevention
As defined by World Health Organisation (WHO), health is a "State of complete physical, mental, and social wellbeing, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity".
It can also be defined as the body’s ability to adapt to the challenges in our lives and potential changes in the environment we live in.
Staying healthy, however, is not a matter of wishful thinking or luck. It’s linked to the lifestyle choices adopted throughout our lives that cumulatively influence our long-term and future health management.
The sooner preventative steps are taken; the better the outcomes. What can help...
- Making informed choices in our lifestyles, eating a balanced diet, body weight control and being proactive in the process of health, can help to reduce your risk factors that lead to development of ill health.
- Reducing the risk factors can help you prevent or minimise your chances of developing more complex health problems. That can have a significant influence on your long-term quality of life.
- Early focus on prevention can enable you to remain in control over your choices for health and wellbeing for much longer.
Types of prevention:
- Primary prevention aims to reduce the risk factors that lead to ill health through encouragement of healthier lifestyles, better food choices, weight control and proactive approach to coping with daily challenges.
- Secondary prevention aims to enable individuals with long-term conditions to reduce the impact of functional limitations on their lifestyle through development of preventative strategies for optimum health and wellbeing, alongside conventional medical treatment.
Chronic pain can affect all aspects of a person’s life. It is frequently linked with weakness, fatigue, depression, loss of confidence and lost control. These factors trigger feelings of fear, anxiety, and anger, and leads to negative changes in an individual’s lifestyle. Their inactivity leads to weight gain and dietary imbalances, which are strongly connected to chronic pain and long-term conditions such as in arthritis, type 2 diabetes, asthma, hypertension or circulatory problems. Those affected, find it extremely difficult to lead an active lifestyle. The result is prolonged immobility, disuse of muscles, and functional impairment; leading to further health problems.
What can help
People who are affected by chronic conditions are encouraged to develop their own functional potential, and thus, cope better with limitations, and become more proactive and confident in making informed choices in their lives.
Educational support enables them to attain the necessary knowledge and skills that help them to become active participants in their own care. That, in turn, has a significant impact on the quality of their lives and developmental experience as part of their long-term health and wellbeing.
There is increasing awareness among health professionals and patients of the benefits of preventative care strategies and an understanding that, often, prevention is better than the cure. As a result, preventative interventions are gaining traction among both health services and policy makers keen to reduce the economic and social impact of an ageing population.
Many older people are living with more than one chronic condition, which has an impact on their lives, and is often the cause of disability. If not managed successfully, it will continue to increase the challenge to the health and social care systems.
Staying healthy, however, is not a matter of wishful thinking or luck. It’s linked to the lifestyle choices adopted throughout our lives that cumulatively influence our long-term and future health.
Most importantly, the sooner preventative steps are taken; the better the outcomes. Furthermore, the role of the healthcare providers in ensuring early referrals of their patients/clients to the specific-target health promotion courses is paramount, to prevent worsening health.
Early referrals to the service can enable people with long-term conditions to remain in control over their limitations, ensure informed choices, and that they remain connected to their community, which improves the quality of their lives.
Our work continues to make a significant contribution towards the development of an integrated model of health and preventative care that is based on building people’s capacity to make healthier decisions in the context of their everyday life and taking greater responsibility for their choices; resulting in improved wellbeing and an increased chance of living independently, for longer.