Where You Live Could be Affecting Your Health
We typically like to think that we have complete control over the outcome of our health by making healthy choices such as eating healthy and exercising. However, there are many factors that we don’t consider that play major roles in the outcome of our health. These factors can be divided into four categories; Physical Environment, Social & Economic Factors, Clinical Care and Health Behaviors.
Physical environment: the place in which someone lives is, is responsible for 10% of their health outcome. People who live in areas where air quality and water quality are poor have a higher chance of having health problems later in life. An example of this is people who live in neighborhoods near factories, industrial plants and/or highways most likely have their air and water polluted from all the chemicals being released into the air.
Social & economic factors: these factors include income and community safety. When it comes to income, people who have lower incomes tend to have less money to spend on things such as medicine and healthy food options. Community safety pertains to the amount/lack of crime in areas as well as the amount of security in that community i.e. gated communities, community crime watchers, police presence etc.
Clinical care: healthcare operations by a medical professional and is responsible for 20% of a person’s health outcome. If a person does not have easy access or cannot afford to receive the proper clinical care needed, it will take a toll on their health in the long run if not immediately. There are many free and affordable measures that one can take to maintain their health, but at the same time, there are some things that require immediate attention by a health care professional.
Health behaviors: the healthy or unhealthy actions a person takes. A person with potentially harmful health behaviors may drink alcohol excessively or participate in drug use. A person who takes healthy actions eats balanced meals and exercises regularly. These measures are determinants of how poor or good your health will be in the future.
Just because we feel as if we are living a healthy life, does not mean that we are. As previously stated, it takes more than just a few healthy habits to maintain and ensure a healthy lifestyle. It is crucial that we ensure that we are making the proper adjustments to our health if we live in environments that could negatively impact our health.
To learn more about the potential health hazards in your community, check out the links below:
- Could where you live influence how long you live?
- How The Location of Your Home Affects Your Health
- Your Health and Where You Live: Are These Connected?
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