Health is important to all of us. It’s a concern for everyone around the world. This includes our mental health as well as physical health. It may surprise some, but culture contributes to the maintenance of our health and the causes and treatment of disease. Health and disease are not defined the same in all cultures and what leads to good health also varies depending on the culture. Levels of access and care vary as well. In a multicultural society like the United States, it is important to understand this. From a psychology perspective, there are psychosocial and sociocultural factors that influence health, but these too vary depending on one’s culture. To meet the needs of a culturally diverse society, it’s crucial to realize that the influence of culture on health is real and understanding its influence will help you meet people’s needs. Write a 700- to 1,050-word response to the following questions from Culture and Psychology.
Three indicators of health have been studied worldwide—infant mortality, life expectancy, and subjective well-being.
What other indicators do you think are important for assessing a country’s health and well-being? How would you measure it?
Choose a health outcome (such as obesity or a disease). Identify and describe biological, psychological, and social factors that may contribute to the development of the health outcome.
Can you think of any psychological disorders that only appear in your culture? How would you study whether a disorder is specific to your culture?
There are several barriers to seeking mental health services that may explain racial or ethnic disparities. Think about the category of gender.
Do you think there would also be gender disparities in seeking out and using mental health services? If so, explain what specific barriers may account for these disparities.