Since the dawn of science, almost all diseases have been attributed mainly to biological factors, i.e. genes, viruses, etc. In recent years, however, a new theory, majorly proposed by George L. Engel, is coming into focus depicting that the outcome of a disease depends not only on biological factors but is rather due to intricate interactions of biological, psychological and social factors. This new universal approach towards disease causation has changed the way we look at a disease, its implications and its treatments.
The BPS or Biopsychosocial model has been widely accepted by the medical experts as well as general masses alike and its incorporation into the lives of people is ensuring a more positive and proficient approach towards disease control, prevention and treatment. Knowing the basics of BPS and the way it affects our lives would help one to lead a healthier and more optimistic lifestyle and encourage others to do so as well.
Biological factors are perhaps the most known and the most obvious causes of a certain condition of disease and/or health. They include genetics, infections, physical trauma, nutrition, hormones, and toxins. Most of the time, individuals have little or no control over biological factors themselves. However, when viewed in combination with psychosocial factors, we can exert some level of control over biological factors as well.
By using different techniques for stress-management the risk behaviors in a person can be modified. However, it is largely acknowledged that it is very demanding and tough for people to give up their risk behaviors and embrace healthier lifestyles. It is hence essential to modify the dogmas, insights and attributes that people possess regarding their well-being and ailments. These therapies and techniques have been proven to be effective in dealing with illnesses that were hitherto regarded as needing medical involvement.
Many social factors contribute to the general well-being or illness of an individual. A person who remains aloof from his/her social counterparts and does not participate in communal activities is more prone to developing different diseases. Places where unemployment and long and unsociable working hours are the norm also show a high rate of disease occurrence. A proper research methodology needs to be adapted in order to identify the health risks related to certain behaviors and social circumstances. The data collected through this research should then be utilized to produce certain changes at social and economic levels so that negative factors are eliminated from the society and a healthier lifestyle is established for individuals.