What Is Health Education and Why Is It Absolutely Important?

A teacher delivering health education
Health education

[boomdevs_toc]

INTRODUCTION


Health education is an essential part of our lives. Health is a universal issue which affects every single person, no matter your country, age, race, sex or any other affiliation. In this post, we are going to throw more light on what health education really is and why it is very important in our everyday lives.

WHAT EXACTLY IS HEALTH EDUCATION?


Health education, simply means, making people aware about their health and the health issues which they face in their daily lives.

However, there is more to health education than just giving information about health.


According to the World Health Organization (WHO), health education comprises consciously constructed opportunities for learning involving some form of communication designed to improve health literacy including improving knowledge and developing life skills which are conducive to individual and community health.


We, as different individuals, make up the community. If more individuals in a community acquire appropriate health knowledge, decide and are empowered to act, there will ultimately be a better standard of health for such individuals and the community in which they reside, compared with another community with less knowledge and necessary skills and things needed to improve on their health.

Health is a universal issue which affects every single person, no matter your country, age, race, sex or any other affiliation.

WHAT ARE THE OBJECTIVES OF HEALTH EDUCATION?

1) To give health knowledge:

We cannot talk about an individual taking a right decision with regards to health if such a person doesn’t even have the right information in the first place. Health education thus provides individuals and communities with the information they need to make informed decisions about their health.

2) To refine people’s attitudes towards their health:

Let us give an example. In a community where people throw wastes indiscriminately, leave their gutters filled up and leave bushes all around unattended to; this community may be riddled with many health issues and diseases. Unfortunately, most people in such areas may adopt an “I don’t care” kind of attitude and may be waiting for the government or other people to act. They may not even see anything wrong with what they are doing.

Health education, when properly initiated, will open their eyes to see that such attitude will cause more harm than good.To equip individuals and communities with relevant skills in order to put their decision into use. Health education doesn’t just show people what to do; it shows them how to do it. Skills like networking, building partnerships, brainstorming and problem solving skills, even people management skills can be developed in this context.

3) To equip individuals and communities with relevant skills in order to put their decision into use.

Health education doesn’t just show people what to do; it shows them how to do it. Skills like networking, building partnerships, brainstorming and problem solving skills, even people management skills can be developed in this context.

4) To help people maximize the available resources and services available within their community for their healthy living.

Examples of such services include immunization services which are basically free for most of them. People are encouraged to maximize health facilities and health programmes which often come up from time to time.

5) To enhance community development:

A healthy nation, they say, is a wealthy nation. If an individual is healthy, its effect trickles to those around him or her and ultimately to the community. Such an individual is an asset to the community in which he resides and can make his meaningful contributions to the growth of such a community.

6) To reduce deaths and impact of disease:

Having the right information about health can be a game-changer in many situations. Many people have lived their lives carelessly because they were didn’t have proper information that would have benefited them. Unfortunately, many have paid dearly for this. For some others, the effect of the disease or health challenges that takes place has a longlasting effect.


Health education comprises consciously constructed opportunities for learning involving some form of communication designed to improve health literacy including improving knowledge and developing life skills which are conducive to individual and community health.

World Health Organization

HOW IS HEALTH EDUCATION DELIVERED?

Health education can be delivered to individuals, groups of people or even entire communities. Some of the means through which this is made possible include:

1) Use of Media Outlets:

These include television, newspapers and radios. Some people listen to their radios through the day. Newspapers are also fast selling commodities.

Social media tools

Health education can be targeted at the community through radio and TV health programmes, announcements and advertorials.

2) Posters: Poster can be put in strategic places. This can be used to reinforce a message about health.

3) Social Media:Telegram, Facebook, WhatsApp, TikTok, YouTube and other social media platforms.

4) Movies: Movies can be acted which captures the health challenges of the people. As people watch in a relaxed atmosphere, they are able to pick up the intended health message.

5) Stories: Short stories are told to people or individuals with a lesson at the end.

6) Songs: This is another practical way of passing information about health. As people listen over and over again, they reflect on the message the song is passing across.

7)Town criers: This occurs in some rural communities. The inhabitants of such communities get the message intended for them.

8) Projected materials: This can occur during town hall meetings, seminars, women meetings, youth meetings and other strategic meetings that take place in the community from time to time. A projector is used with already prepared message in slide shows.

Projecting information on the screen

WHY IS IT IMPORTANT TO HAVE HEALTH EDUCATION?


Health education is important. If not, we won’t be having this discussion in the first place.

Some importance of health education include:

1) It Reduces The Likelihood Of Falling Sick

Having the right health information and acting on it will help us leave healthier lives and reduce exposure to risk factors that make disease possible.

2) It Reduces Likelihood Of Complications Associated With Some Conditions


Acting on health education, someone with blood pressure issues, for instance, begins to take his hospital appointments more serious and keeps to his recommended medications.

Such a person will fare better than another person who completely ignores such information or is unaware of it. The ignorant person may, for instance, have a stroke, which will affect his being able to fully carry out his daily activities.

3) Economic Benefits: When you fall sick less frequently, you reduce spending on drugs and going to hospitals especially in areas where medical expenditure costs are borne by individuals. You are also more productive both at home and in the workplace.

4) It imparts confidence. Knowledge, they say, is power. Having the right health information and acting on it gives you a confidence boost, knowing you have played your part in ensuring you live a healthy life.

5) Skills development and capacity building: Soft skills are learnt. This include planning, community mobilization, delegation, problem solving, task sharing and even conflict management.

Teamwork

6) For community development: We belong to families and communities. When we maximize the health education we receive, everybody is in a good state of health and can thus contribute to the development of the community.

[TS_Poll id=”1″]

CONCLUSION

[email-subscribers-form id=”4″]

From this post, we’ve been able to explain what health education is, as well as point out its importance to individuals, families and the community. What have you learned from this post? Kindly make your comments below.

Load more

LET’S KEEP IN TOUCH!

We’d love to keep you updated with our latest news and offers 😎

We don’t spam! Read our privacy policy for more info.

Oh hi there 👋 It’s nice to meet you.

Sign up to receive awesome content in your inbox, once a week.

We don’t spam! Read our privacy policy for more info.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


*