3. The Five Goals Of Health Psychology

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3. The Five Goals Of Health Psychology

  1. 1. The practice of health psychology The 5 goals of health psychology
  2. 2. Five main goals of health psychology….. <ul><li>1. To prevent illness </li></ul><ul><li>2. To promote good health </li></ul><ul><li>3. To help with the treatment of illness </li></ul><ul><li>4. To investigate the psychological correlates of illness </li></ul><ul><li>5. To improve the health care system and health policy </li></ul>
  3. 3. 1. To prevent illness <ul><li>Health psychologists have argued strongly that it is better to prevent an illness than to cure it once it has occurred. </li></ul><ul><li>Not only is it cheaper in the long-term, but also it is better for the ‘patient’. </li></ul><ul><li>The role of psychologists in preventing illness is to develop an understanding of how mental states can influence health behaviour. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>If we wish to stop people doing things that are bad for their health, we have to understand why they do those things in the first place </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. 2. To promote good health….. <ul><li>Because health psychologists see health as being more than just the absence of disease, they are interested in actively promoting well-being. </li></ul><ul><li>A health psychologist would suggest that it is always possible to increase your level of physical and mental well-being. </li></ul>
  5. 5. 3. To help with the treatment of illness….. <ul><li>Despite preventative measures, people do fall ill, and health psychologists have a role in developing treatments that take psychological aspects into account. </li></ul><ul><li>E.g., a doctor may treat a heart patient using drugs or surgery, but a health psychologist could contribute to the treatment by introducing a stress management programme. </li></ul>
  6. 6. 4. To investigate the psychological correlates of illness <ul><li>This is a vital aspect of the work of health psychologists. </li></ul><ul><li>It involves carrying out research to find out which specific mental states are linked to which physical diseases. </li></ul><ul><li>For example, the knowledge that stress is linked to high blood pressure can enable practitioners to identify people at risk as early as possible. </li></ul>
  7. 7. 5. To improve the health care system and health policy….. <ul><li>The knowledge gained by health psychologists, and their general approach to health and illness, can inform the people who run health care systems and help them to provide a more effective service. </li></ul>

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