Chronic Diseases and Poor Health

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What is Chronic Disease?

Diseases can be classified into two broad categories, namely chronic diseases and acute diseases. Before discussing chronic diseases and poor health associated with it, let’s take a slight idea of acute diseases. Acute disease is a disorder that has recently onset and lasts for a short time and accompanies distinct symptoms.  Strep throat and appendicitis are examples of acute diseases. Chronic diseases or chronic illnesses are the diseases which occur gradually and may last for a long time, even for lifetime. It leads to hampering of the organ and organ system thereby affecting the lifestyle and quality of life. Arthritis, Asthma, COPD and Diabetes are some of the chronic disease examples.


A List of Examples for Chronic Diseases

Below are a few more chronic illness examples:

  • AIDS (Acquired Immunodeficiency Disease)

  • Amputation

  • Allergies to food and environmental irritants

  • Asthma

  • Cancer

  • Colitis

  • Cystic fibrosis

  • Hearing loss

  • Heart disease

  • Hepatitis

  • Lung disorders

  • Irritable bowel syndrome

  • Kidney disease

  • Blindness

  • Stroke

  • Crohn’s disease

  • Spinal Cord injury

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What are the Symptoms of Chronic Diseases?

Chronic disease can have severe side effects on the body of a patient and some of the common symptoms associated with various chronic diseases are as follows: 

  • Weakening fatigue

  • Anxiety, hopelessness and depressed mind

  • Urge of frequently urinating

  • Loss of hunger or appetite

  • Intolerable body pain

  • Bruises or wounds all over the body

  • High Blood Pressure

  • High Sugar Levels

  • Abnormality in blood report


Risk Factors for Chronic Diseases

  1. Non - Modifiable Risk Factors: These are the risk factors associated with hereditary, age, gender and age. These are not because of the choices of a person and the risk factors are non-modifiable or not alterable. Some of the examples due to these risks include hypertension, diabetes and coronary heart disease.

  2. Behavioural Risk Factors: These are the risk factors associated with numerous lifestyle habits that increase the probability of chronic diseases. Some of these risk factors are obesity or overweight, physical inactivity, unprotected sex habits and high alcohol consumption.

  3. Cultural and Environmental Risk Factors: These are the risk factors associated with societal class structure, changes in purchasing behaviour, access to and level of education and wealth of local population. Some of these factors include exposure to hazardous materials such as air/water/soil/food, climate change, occupational hazard, ionizing radiation and viruses.


Causes of Chronic Diseases

There are various causes of chronic diseases which are associated with the above risk factors; some causes of chronic diseases related to these risk factors include:

  1. Unhealthy diet, excessive smoking, tobacco use and physical inactivity (Associated with Behavioural Risk factors).

  2. Age and hereditary (Non-modifiable risk factors).

  3. Globalisation, population ageing and urbanization (Cultural, political and environment factors).

  4. Raised blood pressure, high blood pressure, abnormal blood lipids and overweight (intermediate risk factors).


Prevention of Chronic Diseases

Certain precautionary measures and good lifestyle habits help in preventing chronic diseases. Chronic diseases can be controlled and certain risk factors can be eliminated if we follow healthy eating habits, quit smoking, get regular physical exercises or yoga, avoid drinking too much alcohol, control body weight, intake of deep night sleep and be aware of family history. It is often difficult for people to transform their regular habits and change their lifestyle, however, if we strive to gradually replace bad habits with healthy habits such as daily physical activity, less consumption of junk food and unsuitable diet control negativities, having strength to deal with treatments and have confidence to fight against chronic situations.


How are Chronic Diseases and Poor Health Related?

We are now well aware of chronic disease, its causes, symptoms and examples. Let us now understand poor health and how both are related to each other. Poor health is a situation where a person is unable to perform physically, socially or mentally of what he or she is required to do. Chronic diseases are highly effective to result in poor health of a person since it is associated with abnormal functioning or various organs in the body. Various health issues become a part of a person's daily life due to chronic diseases and many of these are non curable, only manageable. Many of the chronic diseases are fatal and some are highly expensive to cure. Therefore, a healthy diet and regular exercise is must for people of all ages. This will not only prevent chronic diseases but make you all time healthy, hearty and keep diseases at bay. As a result, people will have good health instead of poor health.

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

1. How is Poor Health Initiated with Chronic Diseases?

Ans. Chronic diseases are disorders that exist for a longer time and even for lifetime as compared to the acute diseases which are short-termed. As a result, health issues start and a person’s health deteriorates with time. He or she becomes unable to perform their day to day tasks well in terms of physical, social or mental wellness. This is exactly what poor health is.

2. State Some Examples of Chronic Diseases.

Ans. Some of the examples of chronic diseases include asthma, arthritis, AIDS, cancer, COPD, Diabetes, Colitis, irritable bowel syndrome and food or environmental allergies.

3. Are Chronic Diseases More Risky than Acute Diseases?

Ans. Yes, chronic diseases are there for a longer time in the bodies and are often incurable, just manageable. Whereas acute diseases are there for a short time and often get cured quickly. However, if acute diseases are not taken seriously, these may turn into chronic diseases. So, it is always advised to do a routine checkup and get ensured of your health in advance so that one can take precautions and follow healthy lifestyle choices.

4. What are the Examples of Acute Diseases?

Ans. Some of the examples of acute diseases include sore throat, appendicitis, broken bone, bronchitis, pneumonia, heart attack, flu and common cold.