If you are sick, there are three options to choose from. First, you can consult a doctor. Second, you can take care of it yourself. Third, you can combine the first two and make the best possible decision.
Given that, let us explore three trends currently affecting the healthcare industry.
In countries like Japan, Germany, South Korea, and the United Kingdom, pharmaceutical companies cannot advertise prescription drugs. Even though you might see a TV commercial or online pop-up advising you on a specific medicine for a headache or back pain, you will never find one for illnesses like cancer, HIV, or diabetes.
The United States, on the other hand, does permit drug manufacturers to promote directly to the consumer. But why the difference? Why isn’t it the same all over the world?
There are several reasons for this. First, the US doesn’t have a universal healthcare system in place. As a result, patients rely on private health insurance to pay for their medical needs. Second, American culture is one of complete liberty. Citizens can do whatever they want as long as they don’t hurt others. Finally, the countries that forbid the advertising of prescription drugs believe it is the doctor’s responsibility to choose the most suitable medicine for the patient, not the other way around.
The importance of this is the current shift in patient involvement. The internet has made it possible for regular people to access vast amounts of information, including that which relates to medicine and personal healthcare. As a result, patients are now taking charge of their health instead of only following what the doctor says. After all, nobody knows your body better than yourself.
Another example is the growth of EHR systems that allow doctors and patients to analyze and make joint medical records in real-time.
Self-reliance on Nutrition and Exercise
Among other things, a hypochondriac is an individual who has the habit of self-diagnosis and treatment. If he has a strong headache, he will never visit a doctor. Rather, he will either do nothing or make a personal decision on what medicine to take. The same goes for more serious illnesses.
The concept of self-reliance is not one related to being a hypochondriac. It’s not about convincing your brain that you know everything about your health and thus decide everything yourself. It’s about combining the knowledge you have on your own body with the information at your disposal to make a decision.
In terms of nutrition, it is you who gets to choose what you eat. It’s not a nutritionist or doctor who is in charge of that call. Sure, they can give you advice based on what they know. But at the end of the day, you should be smart about what to follow and what to discard.
No matter how many people tell you that you need protein, you shouldn’t eat it if you know red meat causes inflammation or acid reflux. If you have a history of bad knees, why would you do squats? Wouldn’t it be better to focus on other kinds of resistance training?
What we have seen recently is people realizing that taking control of your health is a personal choice. It is a matter of doing research, getting the proper knowledge, and being proactive.
Focusing on Mental Health
How you feel is as important as how you look, maybe even more. No matter how fit or strong you are, nothing else will work if your mind is not in the right place. If you are in a state of sadness, depression, or disappointment, you won’t be able to maximize the time you have and make proper use of your qualities and skills.
The topic of mental health is fast-moving into all areas of our lives. It includes personal relationships, education, and health. Slowly but surely, companies are starting to recognize its importance in their employees’ productivity and work efficiency.
And people themselves are also starting to take the necessary steps to ensure a sound mental state. They are no longer shying away from the stigma of psychological problems and how these affect their everyday existence.
The first step to deal with mental health issues is to understand that conditions like anxiety and depression are not signs of weakness. It goes far beyond that. It is a medical condition that affects more than 250 million people worldwide. As such, it should be treated accordingly. If parents, teachers, and company bosses realize this, they will be well on their way to finding a solution.
Being healthy is a basic need for human beings. Luckily, as societies continue to develop and people are better educated, we are experiencing a much more participatory approach.
It is seen in trends like patient-doctor collaboration, self-reliance on nutrition and exercise, and a clear focus on mental well-being.