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Lecture 2

Lecture 2 - Health Behaviours .docx

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Nathalie Ricard

Lecture 2- Health Behaviours Health Promotion:  Definition: To increase control over, and to improve health  Good Health = personal and collective goal o Individual: Health habits  Sense of personal control is very important and HP puts a huge focus of this o Health psychology: practice, maintenance and change  Showing them how to change the behaviour is very important and not just telling them. Coming up with strategies together is a very effective way of accomplishing this. o Interactions with medical system, mass media and legislation  Doctors should have conversations with their patients: meds on a continual basis in my regular routine. Suggesting behaviour changes: like sleeping 8 hrs  Mass media: make it available to individuals in a language that is understandable to them. (ie lack of scientific words)  Cost effective o Prevention and treatment costs will diminish if promotion is increased. Health Behaviours:  To enhance and/or maintain health  Poor health behaviours  poor health habits and illness o Even if you go to the gym 5 times a week, if you smoke a pack of cigarettes a day, you still have behaviours to change  Not as specific as health habits Health Habit:  Firmly established, often automatic o Ex: brushing our teeth, we have been doing it forever and we already know the benefits  Begin in childhood, stabilize around 11 or 12  Often requires a specific equipment (ex: running shoes, the actual toothbrush)  This is why it is important to have programs for young children to teach them good behaviours that are more likely to become habits.  They come hand in hand. Ex: after exercising you will have a tendency to eat better Primary Prevention:  If we increase the awareness, reduce chances of getting ill; some genetic predispositions. Factors Associated with Health Behaviours Demographics  Ex: SES, social support, education, stress  Can be positive or negative factors o If you tend to interact with people who get drunk and smoke all the time, it will also influence your behaviours. Age and gender: variance  Childhood is the key stage to establish good behaviours, becomes harder to change as life proceeds.  Childhood: good  adolescence: poor  adulthood: good  Window of vulnerability: life stages where we are more vulnerable to start practicing poor health behaviours and the stage where it becomes hard to create change (adolescence)  A common example is starting smoking  Hardest to change: teenage girls because their behaviours are usually linked to self-imagine and how they appear to their social world. Values  Ex: Culture  can influence personal choices  Restaurants in USA, everything is bigger  Exercise has become more prominent in Canada, and when we see this change, it encourages us to exercise as well.  Some religions don’t allow women to exercise Personal Control  Health locus of control o Even if you are genetically predisposed, you can still reduce the chance of risk factors by engaging in healthy behaviours. Don’t just sit around and do nothing. You always have SOME control.  Internal and external o As you get older and more mature, you are less influenced by external factors and can rely more on internal factors Social Influences  Both positive influences and negative influences  Recall window of vulnerability Personal Goals  Should be reasonable, but still challenging o Ex: running a marathon in 3 weeks when you have never run in your life.  Once achieved, you need to work on maintaining it in the future.  Always start small and work towards something harder. You can set easy goals, moderate goals and more difficult goals. Perceived Symptoms  Sensations associated with a particular behaviour  Reminding yourself how you felt after you did something good so that it will encourage you to continue in the future when you are less motivated.  Applies to both negative and positive behaviours o Ex: how good you felt after you went to the gym o Ex: when you overeat and you feel sick afterwards Health Care Services  Essential and not so essential services  Essential = going to the doctor and dentist, although it may only be every 6- 12 months.  Not so essential = having a park nearby, a gym nearby  Ex: the elderly who have trouble going to the pharmacy to refill their prescriptions. Making it more accessible for them. Cognitive Factors  Beliefs regarding risks and benefits of health behaviours.  Knowing the positive and negatives associated with a behaviour despite what we may have known our whole life. 1) Changing Health Behaviours: The Health Belief Model  Attitude change models: how and why people practice behaviours and how and why it is hard to integrate into daily life.  Whether a person practices a health behaviour depends on: 1) Individual Factors: Personal control, demographics, values 2) Degree to which a perceived health threat exists: ex: how likely is it that I will develop Cancer? Or knowing about having the cancer gene will make me want to practice better health behaviours 3) Perception that behaviour will reduce threat. Ex: celiac disease ( 2+3 mentioned in the book) 2) Changing Health Behaviours: Theory of Planned Behaviour  Linking health attitudes directly to behaviour  Health behaviour = direct result of behaviours intention  Behavioural intentions are made up of: o Attitude toward the specific action  Determining what my beliefs are about the likely outcome and evaluating these outcomes. o Subjective norms regarding the action  What a person believes others think that person should do (normative beliefs) and the motivation to comply with those normative refere
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