Ecological Concept

Health Hygiene & Sanitation

Lesson 01 : Introduction To Health And Concepts

Changing Concepts Of Health

Ecological Concept: Ecology is defined as the science of mutual relationship between living organism and their environment. Human ecology is a part of the science of ecology. Human eco-system includes all dimensions of man-made environment- physical, chemical, biological and psychological in addition to natural environment.

According to the ecologists health is viewed as a dynamic equilibrium between man and environment, and disease is viewed as an imbalance between the two. Dubos defined health as ‘Health implies relative absence of pain and discomfort and a continuous adaptation and adjustment to the environment to ensure optimal function’. Human ecological and cultural adaptations do determine not only the occurrence of disease, but also food security and population explosion. The ecological concept revolves around two issues: Man and environment. Adaptation of man to natural environment can result in prolonged life expectancies and better quality of life even in the absence of modern health amenities.

Man has created new health problems by altering the environment in terms of various activities like urbanization, industrialization, deforestation, construction of dams and canals. Growth of slums and deterioration of environment is the greatest threat to human health in India. Changes in the human ecology have resulted in revival / recrudescence of once controlled agents.

  • Bhopal gas tragedy in 1984 highlights the danger of locating industries in urban area.
  • Nuclear disaster in Soviet Russia in 1986 is a reminder of environmental pollution.
  • Construction of dams, irrigation system and artificial lakes has created ecological niches favoring breeding of mosquitoes, snails and spread of diseases

The geographical distribution of almost all diseases is the ecological factors.

Last modified: Monday, 23 April 2012, 5:25 AM