discuss the following;
How do family friends and community influence individual health and lifestyle? Identify at least 3 positive and 3 negative effects.
- Your initial post should be at least 500 words, formatted and cited in current APA style with support from at least 2 academic sources.
- You should respond to at least two of your peers by extending, refuting/correcting, or adding additional nuance to their posts.
- All replies must be constructive and use literature where possible.
Family, friends, and the community can influence individuals’ health and lifestyle choices in many ways. A family consists of at least two individuals that reside in the same home or are close to one another. Also, families usually share an emotional bond, trust, culture, and love. Therefore, family plays a vital role in our health and lifestyle choices. Furthermore, friends are the individuals we choose to be around and sharing of common interests and activities. During adolescence, friends’ influences can be even more significant than our own family. For instance, if an adolescent hangs out with friends that use alcohol or drugs, the adolescent will be influenced to do the same in order to fit in with the group or be accepted. Substance use among adolescents represents a pressing public health issue in the United States. In 2014, 62% of high school seniors reported past-year alcohol use, almost a quarter reported past-month binge drinking (i.e., having five or more drinks in a row), and 90% agreed that alcohol is easy to acquire. This is concerning, given that underage drinking is associated with both immediate and long-term health consequences (Jacobs et al., 2016). Our community can also influence individuals in plenty of ways. For instance, an individual living in a bad neighborhood with high crime and violence and an impoverished community could be influenced to follow a similar direction or path. Therefore, violence, crime, and harmful habits such as substance abuse are three negative effects that can occur with the influence of friends, family, and our community.
On the other hand, individuals can also be positively influenced. Family systems consist of the norms, values and practices associated with the organization of family ties that are geographically anchored and shared within societies. Family systems refer to the customary, normative manner in which family processes unfold to the usually preferred pattern of household dynamics incorporating marriage form(s), succession, transmission of property, the typical sequence of co-residential arrangements and the customary bias by gender and relative age that informs these dimensions (Mönkediek & Bras, 2018). Positive effects individuals can get from family and friends include following a healthy diet, exercising regularly, and being compliant with medical appointments and preventive screenings; therefore, preventing possible lethal diseases and acquiring knowledge and techniques to follow healthy lifestyle habits on a daily basis. Furthermore, the community can also significantly influence if resources are available to assist with education and knowledge of health, fun social events to interact with, and support groups for those seeking support and guidance.
Jacobs, W., Barry, A. E., Xu, L., & Valente, T. W. (2016). Hispanic/Latino Adolescents’ Alcohol Use: Influence of Family Structure, Perceived Peer Norms, and Family Members’ Alcohol Use. American Journal of Health Education, 47(4), 253–261.
Mönkediek, B., & Bras, H. (2018). Family Systems and Fertility Intentions: Exploring the Pathways of Influence. European Journal of Population, 34(1), 33–57. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10680-017-9418-4
St. Thomas University
Dr. Tina Roberts
Effects on Individual Health and Lifestyle
Being healthy does not imply that an individual is free from infirmity or diseases but is in complete social, physical, and mental well-being. A person’s lifestyle is often defined by edges gained from embracing a particular guideline. Nevertheless, numerous factors surrounding an individual’s life can shape them in the growth process. Such factors include the general community where individual lives or is raised, the family within which an individual was raised, and friends with whom they associate with as they grow up. A family is one of the crucial growth process aspects in a person’s life. During the growth process, a child learns how to socialize and interact with other individuals and the environment. Thus, a family plays a crucial role in providing the child with the foundation of their socialization and interaction. A child can learn certain family values, decision-making processes, and principles crucial for growth. Despite raising children having challenges, most families try to teach them better health and lifestyle behaviors (Smith & Segal 2020).
On the other hand, a friend can be considered as someone who knows one’s flaws, trusts and still accepts that person as they are. It is crucial to have friends as one grows because they play a crucial role in preventing loneliness and isolation. Besides, they help an individual boost self-esteem, confidence, and social identity (Dutot, 2020). However, if an individual chooses the wrong friends, they can lead them to experience poor health outcomes, including stress and anxiety. A certain percentage of an individual’s lifestyle and health is defined by the groups or individuals they associate with. Friends are most influential, particularly in the teenage ages, and the kind of friends one has can have positive or negative impacts.
A community encompasses individuals with mutual interests or characteristics living together in a larger society. A community with appositive growth expects individuals to have a reasonable impact on others. This allows the nurturing of a sense of belonging regardless of status. Thus, such communities can influence an individual’s health and lifestyle.
Families, friends, and the community’s positive impacts
- Family, friends, and communities establish good health and better lifestyle foundations via shared empowerment and ownership, positive networks and associations, social participation opportunities and connections, and community connection and cohesion (Rector & Stanley, 2021).
- Better families, good friends, and community can raise an individual’s purpose and sense of belonging because the positive family, group, and community values guide an individual to engage in appropriate lifestyles and health-enhancing behaviors.
- Robust family, friends, and community connections help minimize stress, boost happiness, enhance self-growth and self-confidence, and encourage one to avoid or change unhealthy lifestyle habits.
Families, friends, and the community’s negative impacts
- Weak family, group, and community values can instill poor decision-making skills into an individual, negatively impacting their lifestyle and health habits (Nomaguchi & Milkie, 2020).
- Poor family upbringing, bad friends, and poor community values can facilitate an individual embracing a bad lifestyle and health behavior like smoking, robbery, and alcoholism.
- Oppressive family and community norms can hold individuals back from thinking well for themselves, resulting in poor lifestyles and mental health. According to Bodden & Deković (2016), risky families (over/under-regulation, aggression, and lack of warmth) raise children with high HPA-axis dysregulation risks. This results in children having poor physical, mental, and social health issues.
Bodden, D. H., & Deković, M. (2016). Multiproblem families referred to youth mental health: What’s in a name?. Family process, 55(1), 31-47. https://doi.org/10.1111/famp.12144Links to an external site.
Dutot, V. (2020). A social identity perspective of social media’s impact on satisfaction with life. Psychology & Marketing, 37(6), 759-772. https://doi.org/10.1002/mar.21333Links to an external site.
Nomaguchi, K., & Milkie, M. A. (2020). Parenthood and well‐being: A decade in review. Journal of Marriage and Family, 82(1), 198-223. https://doi.org/10.1111/jomf.12646Links to an external site.
Rector, C., & Stanley, M. J. (2021). Community and public health nursing. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.
Smith, M., & Segal, J. (2020, November). Grandparents raising grandchildren. HelpGuide.org. https://www.helpguide.org/articles/grandparenting/grandparents-as-parents.htm