What is Health Education?
It provides opportunities for an interesting and varied range of jobs, offering the chance both for development of the professional, as well as giving a sense of being useful to the community.
Where do Health Education specialists work?
They work in the education sector, the public sector and with the social sector.
The education sector includes nursery units, preschool, schools and education departments. Sports teachers and physical fitness instructors are in this field. They can work not only with children but also with the public.
In the public sector Health Education is involved with primary care, health centers, medical centers, hospitals and clinics. Nurses, Health Administrators and Health Care Management are among the range of jobs in this field.
Social services and the social sector include services for children and young people, working adults, the elderly, communities, housing and the environment. Cosmetology, Marriage Counseling and Counseling, Massage Therapy and X ray Technicians are among those working in this area. Art Therapy, supported by the Association of Arts in Psychology, is among the specialisms.
For anyone interested in health education and working with people this is interesting work because there are so many directions from which it can be approached. Health Education can appeal as a profession to many different individuals.
What is covered by Health Education?
It is an area where education of the individual practitioner is part of ongoing professional development and can open the path for advancement.
There are a number of areas which can be covered. Sex and sexuality create issues for some. This is where Marriage Counselors, Counselors and the medical professions can offer help and guidance.
The mental health of individuals and how they learn to deal with their issues, sometimes requires help. Emotional traumas and upsets are always present and a professional body of individuals, trained and experienced in psychology and working as Counselors, can offer support when needed. This can include personal change for individuals, allowing them how to develop good habits as well as learning how to use the skills they have. Helping individuals to break the habit of repeat actions which bring about failure, is part of the Counselor’s job. View a complete list of Online Psychology Degree Programs.
Occupational health education can provide information on the safe use of hazardous materials in the workplace, such as the chemicals used in farming or in some industrial processes; ensuring safety guards are placed on machinery, that protective clothing is provided and used by the workers, and anything else which protects the worker from dangers that can be predicted and prevented. Work related stress also comes under this umbrella heading.
Teaching about healthy eating and what good nutrition involves can change the health of individuals and a community. Again, many have curious ideas about what constitutes a healthy diet and when people learn why certain food groups are needed, or not, they can make a huge change to their lifestyle and consequently their health.
Information about drugs and tobacco is part of the education which informs society of dangers they need not face. Advertising against the use of drugs and tobacco has been around for many years, yet there are those who believe they will not be affected by the diseases which are connected with these activities.
Ethical issues in health education have to be considered. The moral behavior involved in teaching the benefits of good health seems to be simple, but invariably, as in any profession, there are issues which can create ambivalence and discussion as to their validity.
The development of an evidence base means research and development is available to back up theories. When properly conducted research shows the best practice, people are more willing to listen and learn. There will always be those who challenge the results because it goes against what they believe. This is where tact and personal skills of working with others is required.
This is a multi professional, science based area of work with potential for advancement through continuing education and professional development.