Health Education and Behavior: Promoting Healthy Living
Health education and promotion are two paradigms that coincide in the world of nursing. Whitehead (2003) describes the biomedical structure of health education approaches as modified allopathic pursuits in health interventions. Nurses play a pivotal role in the education and health promotion for patients under their care. The World Health Organization (2015) defines health education as increasing awareness and shaping attitudes to improve health through learning encounters. Health education is the teaching conducted by the nurse that promotes and attempts to improve the health status of an individual by encouraging them to adopt healthy behaviors. There is strong theoretical basis for health education and interventions to promote healthy living.
Health behavior is the action by which an individual occupies daily living in a manner to promote well-being. In simpler terms, health behavior can be defined by the way in which a person cares for themselves. It can be taking actions to better a lifestyle or how they conduct themselves day to day. Health literature describes health behavior in an assortment of aspects. Orr and Plaut (2014) describe a model of health behavior as it changes through a chaotic progression. They explain that a course of information gathering must occur and as cognition accepts the new concepts, it is then that behaviors develop and respond to the information provided. Conduct of the individual is based on the premise that they have been given all of the information needed to make a change. To be successful, the practitioner must understand how the person views themselves and their current health status before i...
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...portunities and challenges. Patient Education & Counseling, 78(3), 329-336.
McEwen, M., & Wills, E. (2014). Theoretical Basis for Nursing (4th ed.). Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.
Orr, M., & Plaut, D. (2014). Complex systems and health behavior change: Insights from cognitive science. American Journal of Health Behavior, 38(3), 404-413.
Weyer, S., & Werner, J. (2010). Characteristics of nurse practitioners interested in participating in a practice-based research network. Journal of the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners, 22(3), 156-161.
Whitehead, D. (2003). Health promotion and health education viewed as symbiotic paradigms: Bridging the theory and practice gap between them. Journal of Clinical Nursing, 12(1), 796-805.
World Health Organization. (2015). Health education [Data file]. Retrieved from http://www.who.int/topics/health_education/en/
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