The way I see it, there are four approaches to health care. These are not necessarily mutually exclusive, but I will describe them separately. Each is necessary and has it’s merits. I don’t mean to talk down about any of these ways to practice health care. However, I definitely have my preference about the most effective approach.
1. Sick Care AKA Traditional Medicine – In this form of health care, care is most commonly initiated once something has gone wrong. Usually, treatment consists of something that is done to the patient by either a doctor through their procedures, or by medications through their effects on the body. According to this model, you’re either sick or you’re healthy and there’s very little in between.
2. Preventative Medicine – This term is usually used to refer to procedures like mammograms, prostate checks, colonoscopies, and self checks. However, I prefer to call this stuff “early detection” as it really does not prevent anything other than preventing something from getting worse. This is definitely worthy, but we can do better.
3. True Preventative Health Care – Now we’re getting warmer. This describes the method of identifying risk factors and avoiding those risk factors in order to prevent disease. Examples of this are avoidance of smoking, excessive alcohol use, and overconsumption of sugar and saturated fats.
4. Wellness – This is where I think we can do the most good in our lives. Although preventative health care is nice, it’s still defensive. Rather than be defensive, we should go on the offensive. It’s not enough to just avoid unhealthy behaviors, but rather we should be seeking out healthy behaviors. Participating in exercise, eating healthy foods, and striving to be well rounded in your personal and social life, and your career, will allow you to function optimally.
Check back for upcoming posts that will go into more depth about “wellness”. This is a concept that everyone should be aware of. This is especially important since most of us have been brought up under the sick care model. It permeates our culture, and we need to wake up and realize there’s a more effective way of doing things.
(Dr. Touchinsky is a chiropractor in Orwigsburg, Schuylkill County . In addition to treating people for neck pain and back pain, he focuses on helping people overcome a variety of health issues through healthy lifestyle and nutritional counseling. If you have an issue you’d like help with or would like a second opinion, call the office at 570-366-2613 to set up an appointment.)
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