Holistic health care is an integrated approach to healing rooted in the idea that the most effective practices are those that consider the whole person, rather than focusing on specific illnesses, body parts or symptoms. The goal of holistic health care is to achieve maximum well-being in all facets of one’s life, where everything is functioning at its very best.
There are five dimensions of personal health considered by a holistic health practitioner which include:
- Physical: More than just exercise, maintaining physical well-being involves a nutritional diet, proper hygiene and getting the appropriate amount of sleep.
- Emotional: This refers to a person’s ability to cope with daily stressors and problems, handle success as well as defeat and manage study, work and other activities. An emotionally healthy person feels good about themselves and is in control of their feelings and behavior.
- Mental: Also regarded as intellectual health, this concerns a person’s ability to concentrate, think, learn and make sound decisions.
- Spiritual: This aspect of personal health is viewed as one’s ability to determine their sense of purpose or meaning which may be maintained through a connection to a higher power.
- Social: This refers to how a person forms and maintains positive relationships. It also involves how a person handles conflict and recognizes negative relationships.
Holistic health may involve a team of specialists such as therapists, counselors, physicians, clergy, nutritionists and more. A serious approach to holistic health may require some commitment–the strategies involved in holistic health are often not ‘quick fixes.’