When it comes to public health, education is extremely important. After all, how can you expect the general population to be healthy, and to ensure the public health of all if they aren’t educated on how to take care themselves as individuals?
Learning How to Be Well on All Levels
Health education goes beyond merely discussing physical health, as it also touches upon how to remain mentally and emotionally well. It even shares information on social health, as it encourages people to improve, as well as maintain, their own health, as well as the health and well-being of others.
By learning how to take care of their own health, students are also helping to prevent the spread of disease, and they can also learn the importance of reducing risky behaviors that could lead to illness or the spread of illness.
Making Healthy Choices for Life
The lessons that are taught as part of health education are not lessons that are soon forgotten. Instead, they are lessons that are carried throughout a student’s life. After an individual learns about the importance of making healthy choices, and how to make those healthy choices, they will be able to lower their risk of injury, and they will also reduce their risk of becoming addicted to tobacco, drugs, and alcohol.
They will even be equipped to make better decisions when it comes to their nutrition and their activity level, as well as their sexual health and their social interactions with others. Again, this all translates to public health, as students who are educated on health will want to teach others what they know and share their tips for being well and balanced.
Communities that have fewer resources and lower-income households often are not able to provide the right level of education regarding health. This results in higher risks for poor health. By incorporating health education into these communities, individuals will be more informed about how to take care of themselves, and that will benefit the public health of the community as well.
Plus, when students learn about health, they are often driven to learn about other subjects as well. Oftentimes, students that receive health education not only improve in terms of the way that they take care of themselves, but they also showcase higher grades in other subjects like math and reading. Students that have health education also tend to be in school more often because they don’t get sick as often, and that benefits the public as well.
It’s clear to see just how important education is for public health. If more communities and schools implemented health education into their curriculum, they would see some positive changes taking place.
Maggie Hammond is a retired nurse and freelance writer, exploring and writing in the U.S. in retirement. An advocate for public health and nursing qualifications, she feels passionate about raising awareness of the current strain on public health organizations.