WASHINGTON, July 29, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- More than 9 in 10 physicians say self-care should be considered an essential part of a patient's overall health, yet only 39 percent of consumers say they practice it often, according to a new survey conducted by The Harris Poll on behalf of Samueli Integrative Health Programs.
Nearly half of doctors (46%) say patients do not seem very interested in discussing self-care, while a majority of patients (72%) say they are interested in discussing it with their healthcare provider. This includes more discussions on a healthy diet, regular exercise, stress management, and alternatives to conventional medical treatment. However, a majority of patients (75%) say they haven't discussed self-care with a doctor within the past two years. Evidence shows guided self-care can help prevent and treat many chronic health conditions, including depression and diabetes, high blood pressure and obesity, loss of mobility associated with serious conditions, and dangerous blood clots in atrial fibrillation and stroke.
Three ways to overcome this disconnect and improve your health by practicing self-care include:
- Build a Strong Relationship—with Your Doctor: Prepare for your annual wellness visit by writing down not just what you're feeling, but what it's keeping you from doing well. Think about why you want to feel better. What life goals do you have that better health will help you accomplish?
- Start with Short, Inexpensive Activities: Try incorporating a daily walk into your routine, or schedule quiet time for you to reflect on what you appreciated about your day before bed. Even these simple activities can provide many benefits to your health and well-being.
- Find Something You Enjoy Doing: One of the best ways to form a new self-care habit is to find something you enjoy or that is meaningful to you. Go outside and bask in nature. With these activities, you're more likely to stick with your goals.
Samueli Integrative Health Programs is dedicated to the promotion of personal health and well-being with the support of health teams dedicated to all proven approaches, including conventional, complementary and self-care.
The Self-Care Survey was conducted online by The Harris Poll on behalf of Samueli Integrative Health Programs among 1,006 U.S. adults ages 18+ (surveyed from May 23 to June 4, 2019) and 304 physicians who specialize in internal medicine or family practice (surveyed from May 23 to June 19, 2019).
SOURCE Samueli Integrative Health Programs