Assignment: Impact of Culture and Spirituality on Illness and Health Essay

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Assignment: Impact of Culture and Spirituality on Illness and Health Essay

Assignment: Impact of Culture and Spirituality on Illness and Health Essay

 

For ages, humans have always sought to engage with the spiritual dimension when on matters concerning individual health and wellbeing. In contemporary practice of medicine, culture, spirituality, and religion have been integrated into illness and health through such practices as the reliance on prayer as a means to healing, counselling especially by church leaders, the pursuit of healing and compassion within the religious context, engaging on deep discussions concerning the meaning of death as well as an active attempt to establish the meaning of illness for a patient, family and for those providing professional care. In fact, the emergence of integrative medicine, which seeks to connect medicine with the soul, is bound to develop more imaginative means of addressing the pervasive issues associated with the mind, body, and spirit, and their connection to health and wellbeing. Given this background, the subsequent discussion explores the how culture impacts human understanding, and hence reactions, to health and illness.

Foremost, no doubts exist concerning the difficulty in conducting a quantifiable scientific research on such abstract constructs of culture as prayer and spirituality, and hence their association with health. Nonetheless, numerous recent studies have shown that such macro-cultural elements as materialism and individualism does influence an individual’s spiritual expression, that in turn influence health and wellbeing (Balboni & Peteet, 2017). A study by Moreira-Almeida, Sharma, van Rensburg, and Verhagen (2016) that focused on psychiatry showed a direct relation between spirituality and self-management, with religion acting as a source of strength for patients. Addressing spiritual issues, the study shows, tends to make a huge difference in an individual’s experience of an illness, and to an extent, the health outcomes. The outcome of this inquisition, however, is not a sufficient proof for the effectiveness of religion/spirituality in healing.

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A number of studies have also shown that religious adherence tends to provide the requisite stability, support and direction to individuals trying to cope with stress, essentially by enabling them to find the ultimate purpose and meaning of life. Spiritual

Assignment Impact of Culture and Spirituality on Illness and Health Essay

Assignment Impact of Culture and Spirituality on Illness and Health Essay

orientations have the potential of inspiring productive coping mechanisms for people battling mental health issues, as well as other chronic health illnesses. For instance, in their extensive review of published works, Tabei, Zarei and Joulaei (2016) established that recourse to spiritual powers reduces patient anxiety and concerns, which allows them to accept and proactively cope with their varied ailments. Also, the measure of balance and stability in one’s understanding of the meaning of life has long been understood as crucial an individual’s wellbeing and to a great extent, social cohesion. Ideally, an individual’s psychological wellbeing has a direct relationship with his/her physical health, and to a greater extent, the quality and longevity of this health. Thus, culture and religion seek to express spirituality as a pure construct devoid of external influences or agendas, hence their longevity to human health and wellbeing.

Since culture is all about how we think and perceive the world to work, through such constructs as language, values, assumptions, meaning of experiences, among others, and spirituality being a deeply intuitive sense of connectedness (Morrison, 2019), cultural representation often take the form of religion. Health and wellness process should entail a broader understanding of illness and death, the different beliefs that surround the question of disease causes, approaches employed in promoting health and the manner in which people experience pain and illness. Specifically, such should encompass divination and supplication. Also, individuals should have a broad understanding of culture and its underlying constructs, alongside the ability to distinguish between collectivist and individualist undertones, which can go a long way in tailoring treatment plans for specific populations.

Writes a 2 page paper discussing how culture and spirituality impacts illness and health.

Include activities that may be incorporated in the health/wellness process based on beliefs or cultures.

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