Health, as defined by the World Health Organization, is a state of full physical, mental and emotional well being and not just the absence of illness and infirmity. A number of definitions have also been used over the years for different medical purposes. Some experts believed that health is subjective, meaning it varies from person to person. According to some other definitions, health is essential for humans and all of the animals they serve. Others believed that health is the sum of happiness, prosperity, well-being, safety, and order in a community or a nation.
Public health, as related to physical well being, includes the promotion of healthy lifestyle and proper food intake. This entails education about nutrition, including weight management, physical exercise, and proper diet. It also involves evaluating current practices in the field of public health, evaluating the status of preventing and reducing disease, and improving awareness of the risks of physical illness and diseases. It also entails evaluating the effect of interventions that reduce morbidity, mortality, and rates of disability and disfigurement. Public health also involves evaluation of the impact of public programs and policies related to health, the effect of traumatic events on health, understanding and documenting the impact of occupational exposures to harmful substances and equipment, and evaluating environmental quality.
Mental health and well-being on the other hand, refer to a person’s ability to engage in activities of day to day living with minimal distraction, cope with stress, and maintain concentration, which includes emotions, thinking, and memory. People with mental illnesses are often unable to perform tasks related to their occupations and relationships, resulting to poor work performance, absenteeism, and low productivity. Drug use and abuse, depression, and anxiety can weaken the physical health of people. This eventually leads to lower life expectancy, greater risk of disability and survival, and contributes significantly to overall economic disadvantage.