Health psychology is a branch of psychology directed towards biological, social, and psychological factors their impact on physical and mental well-being. Health plays an imperative part in the historical development of psychology as many pioneers in psychology were trained in medicine for example Dr Hans Selye (father of modern stress and pioneer of stress model) was an endocrinologist. The initial study and development in psychology as scientific discipline emphasized largely on mental health rather than physical health.
In the year 1950, the medical practitioners realized that mental health play a significant role in overall well-being and started to integrate mental health services with regular medicine. As more psychologists were now working in medical facilities and medical schools, the relationship between psychological health and physical health was established.
Clinical psychologist and counselors who do not identify as a health psychologist integrates principles of health psychology while giving therapy. Generally individual discuss their concerns regarding their health in therapy especially if they are suffering from fatal and/or chronic ailment. For example, stress can cause physical symptoms like headaches and heart problems and long term treatment of cancer can lead to hopelessness and depression. Most common technique used practice of health psychology is “biofeedback”
The main principle of health psychology is the ability to help patients who are suffering from fatal illnesses to deal with prognosis and also help the family and the patient as well to accept the future. Health psychologists can also provide the treatment for some physiological, social and psychological problems, they majorly focus on issue in which physical problem has causes issues with mental health or vice-versa. They deal with issues like
• weight or pain (arthritis) management,
• reducing risky sexual behavior
• cardio-vascular problems
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