A sense of humour

A sense of humour

The medicine we know today owes its origins to practice over 2500 years ago

The roots of modern Western medicine lie in Ancient Greece, around the sixth century BCE. Before then, disease and healing were seen in a supernatural context: healing and religion went hand-in-hand. Illness was often seen as divine punishment.

CC BY NC

zpeckler/Flickr

By the time of Hippocrates, around 400 BCE, Greek medicine had come to focus on the body and on natural explanations for sickness and health. The Greeks believed that the body was made up of four humours, or fluids – blood, phlegm, yellow bile and black bile – and that the balance of these humours was central to health. Ill-health was thought to stem from an imbalance of the humours, so treatments aimed to restore balance. This could mean the use of pepper to induce sneezing fits, bleeding people, or subjecting people to enemas or potions to trigger violent vomiting. Read more about Hippocrates in ‘Times Past’ in the Big Picture: Thinking issue.

Later, Ancient Rome embraced Greek medical thinking. Their best physicians were nearly all Greek, including Galen, the most celebrated Roman medical man. Making the most of nature’s bounty was core to Roman medicine: dock for paralysis of the legs (possibly scurvy), St John’s wort to expel bladder stones, fenugreek as an enema and to treat pneumonia, and figs for cough remedies.

The balance of the humours was an enormously influential idea. Only in the past century or so has its popularity waned. Even now, echoes appear in popular thinking – detoxification, phlegmatic personalities and so on.

Other parts of the world have medical traditions that differ significantly from the West. A crucial distinction is the way they answer the question ‘does it work?’: Western medicine argues for evidence from scientific studies; other traditions rely more on the ‘test of time’.

Western medicine sees disease as a disruption to our body’s physiology, which treatment aims to correct. But other medical traditions (such as traditional Chinese medicine and the Ayurvedic tradition of India), like the humours, share the idea of balancing life forces.

About this resource

This resource was first published in ‘Drug Development’ in January 2008 and reviewed and updated in August 2014.

Topics:
Physiology, Medicine, History
Issue:
Drug Development
Education levels:
16–19, Continuing professional development

Under control

Swine flu vs BSE

Under control

What can we do to prevent pandemics?

1. Eliminating infected animals

Mass culling was used during the UK foot and mouth disease (FMD) epidemic in 2001. Culling has also been used to contain H5N1 avian flu, which can be deadly to humans. In 1997, after the first human cases, the Hong Kong authorities slaughtered the country’s entire poultry population – 1.5 million birds – in just three days. The disease was contained but at huge cost. And the virus has since reappeared and spread through wild birds and via the international poultry trade. It is continually circulating in poultry in Bangladesh, China, Egypt, Indonesia and Vietnam.

Though often effective, mass culling has its problems. In the UK FMD outbreak the culling policy led to the slaughter of 4 million animals. A similar number of cattle were slaughtered to prevent bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) entering the food chain in the UK in the 1990s. BSE is a brain disease that involves wrongly folded proteins called prions. It can be transferred to humans as variant Creutzfeldt–Jakob Disease (vCJD) when someone eats contaminated parts of cows.

In the BSE outbreak inadequate compensation led some farmers to break the rules. Bovine tuberculosis also poses a continuing threat to farmers’ livelihoods, as they must slaughter infected animals. Cattle can be infected not just by other cattle but also by wild badgers. A similar situation in a developing country could be disastrous. Who would compensate poor farmers told to slaughter their chickens to prevent a global epidemic of disease?

2. Vaccination

Although vaccines often exist, trade restrictions may hinder their use – a vaccinated animal is hard to distinguish from an infected but healthy-looking one, so countries may not admit them. In many places it is not practical to vaccinate huge numbers of animals. And for diseases such as flu, a vaccine may protect against some strains but not others.

3. Drugs

For bacterial infections, antibiotics are effective – but to varying degrees. The biggest challenge is from antibiotic-resistant bacteria, such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), Clostridium difficile and Neisseria gonorrhoeae. Tuberculosis (TB) is also a major problem as it is very difficult to kill, and strains resistant to multiple antibiotics have appeared.

The medicine chest for viruses is even less well stocked. After avian flu strain H5N1 was found in early 2007 on a British turkey farm, 176 workers were given the antiviral drug Tamiflu (oseltamivir). This can prevent infection and improves the chances of survival of those already infected – but only if given early in infection. Resistant strains of the virus have already been seen in South-east Asia. Between 2003 and 2012 an estimated 400 million birds were slaughtered due to H5N1 infections, and 359 people died after being infected. The number of affected countries has risen above 60. Most governments are stockpiling oseltamivir for use in a possible pandemic.

4. Public education

It sounds simple, but teaching people about taking medicines properly and about sanitary practices in the home and backyard can also have a big impact on disease control.

Lead image:

Janhamlet/Flickr CC BY NC

References

Further reading

About this resource

This resource was first published in ‘Epidemics’ in September 2007 and reviewed and updated in January 2015.

Topics:
Microbiology, Health, infection and disease, Immunology
Issues:
Epidemics, Populations
Education levels:
16–19, Continuing professional development

Who gets the medicine?

Shadow of people waiting in a queue

Who gets the medicine?

If there is not enough medicine to go round, who should be first in line – and who should decide?

Thanks to global disease surveillance, we are likely to have advance warning of an influenza pandemic. And we have some tools to head it off.

But the UK alone has 64 million people to protect – almost certainly there is not going to be enough oseltamivir or flu vaccine to go round, at least initially. Antiviral drugs would be most effective if used prophylactically – to prevent people becoming infected. But who would get them?

Some suitable causes are hard to disagree with – people involved in drug/vaccine manufacture for starters, as well ‘frontline’ healthcare workers. But who else? Are our politicians deserving causes? Civil servants? Teachers? The Royal Family?

This is a difficult ethical issue. The ‘utility principle’ is often put forward, and argues for the distribution that saves the most lives in the long run. The ‘equity principle’ puts greater emphasis on ‘fairness’ of distribution.

A 2006 academic paper suggested that, with limited vaccine supplies, a simple ‘save the most lives’ equation is not necessarily the best strategy. A better approach would be to maximise the number of years of life saved, and to take account of the ‘investment’ in life to date. Crudely put, that means prioritising people from late childhood to middle age.

This may seem distasteful, and the authors acknowledge they are proposing “the least bad solution to a tragic situation”, but some decisions of this kind may have to be made. So who would make these decisions? Nancy Kass, an ethicist at Johns Hopkins University, has argued that lay heroes – the unsung individuals on whom society depends, such as truck drivers and refuse collectors – should be included; without them, society may not function.

And, she argues, ‘ordinary people’ should also be involved in discussions about priorities. Partly this is to ensure fairness, but also to create a sense of transparency and buy in – why should people agree to plans that they have had no chance to influence?

Lead image:

Michael/Flickr CC BY NC

References

About this resource

This resource was first published in ‘Epidemics’ in September 2007 and reviewed and updated in January 2015.

Topic:
Health, infection and disease
Issues:
Epidemics, Influenza special issue
Education levels:
16–19, Continuing professional development

Real Voices interview: Tran Tinh Hien

Real Voices interview: Tran Tinh Hien

Clinician on ward D of the Hospital for Tropical Diseases in Ho Chi Minh City, which looks after avian flu patients in the southern provinces of Vietnam

What happens when a suspected avian flu case is admitted?

In addition to routine medical examination, laboratory tests will be performed to confirm infection of H5N1. However, the results of those tests are only available in 12–14 hours so we have to decide treatment based on epidemiological and clinical factors such as exposure to ill poultry, fever, cough and chest X-ray. The physician, based on this assessment, has to decide whether or not a patient should be sent to the isolation area and receive oseltamivir treatment.

How is avian flu perceived in Vietnam?

In Vietnam the outbreak of H5N1 (2004) followed SARS (2003); therefore it was a great public concern. The national and regional governments have seen the overall problem. Unfortunately, people – particularly those who live in the remote areas who lack information about the disease, or think that ill or dead poultry is still edible – ignore the risk of de-feathering, gutting and preparing chicken or duck or handling fighting cocks. Poverty is another important factor: knowing that any infection in the poultry will have serious consequences for them, farmers try to escape culling poultry in outbreak areas by taking them to untouched places.

Is a pandemic likely?

If the situation is not brought under control in the backyard farms in Asia, the virus will continue to spread country to country and year after year, and this continent will be the most dangerous focus for global public health. Having some degree of immunity after several exposures, Asia may not be the victim of a pandemic but it may occur in Europe and America.

How well prepared do you think the world is?

I am afraid to say that the preparation is not enough in terms of controlling the outbreak in poultry. My personal impression is ‘too many conferences’.

We could use those funds to pay compensation for farmers’ culled flocks or to encourage vaccination of poultry. How can we prevent the pandemic while the outbreaks in poultry and cases in humans still occur in Asia every year and farmers refuse to slaughter their poultry? The situation in Vietnam and Indonesia is an example. We overemphasise the threat but do not implement effective measures for control!

Do you ever fear you might contract avian flu?

Yes, but that is the fear of getting avian flu from patients not from poultry, because I and my family have given up chicken and duck including eggs (the most delicious and my favourites) since 2004. I do hope that I am becoming immunised after four years of treating avian flu patients!

About this resource

This resource was first published in ‘Epidemics’ in September 2007.

Topic:
Health, infection and disease
Issue:
Epidemics
Education levels:
16–19, Continuing professional development

Real Voices interview: Patricia Folan

Real Voices interview: Patricia Folan

Lead nurse in infection control at University College London Hospital

What are the most common infections you encounter?

I see a lot of MRSA. This bacterium can infect wounds and also where needles have been put under the skin. At the more severe end of the spectrum MRSA can cause infections of the bloodstream. We also see increasing numbers of patients infected with tuberculosis, and chicken pox, which spreads very easily, particularly on the childrens wards. Its very dangerous in the neonatal unit.

Which ones do you think are becoming more common?

MRSA is becoming more common, mainly because the bacterium is becoming resistant to more and more antibiotics used in the community and in the hospital environment. We are also seeing more TB, which has been on a steady increase for the last 20 years.

Which infection do you most fear?

Norovirus. Its the winter vomiting and diarrhoea bug. Its indiscriminate, causing symptoms in patients, staff and visitors. Its so infectious weve had to shut down wards. In the past weve even had to close entire hospitals. It takes up a lot of our time and a lot of staff are off sick with it. Its a logistical nightmare.

How does your job affect your home life?

It hasnt made me any cleaner. I am hygienic but you still wouldnt want to operate on somebody on my dining table. When I was a front-line nurse directly responsible for patients on the wards, my life was a lot more stressful.

Are you ever worried about catching an infection?

No. Having a good knowledge of the infections out there and knowing how they spread makes me worry less. Ive worked at the hospital for 17 years and Ive never taken an infection home. The handrails on the tube or the bus are much more filthy than anything in the hospital.

What is the key to infection control?

It’s what you learned at nursery. In a word, hand-washing. You’re not likely to transmit organisms between patients if you wash your hands. That involves patient input as well. If you’ve got dirty hands and scratch your wound, you’re potentially going to infect it.

What are the main challenges now and in the future?

Up until about five years ago, the challenge was just to be taken seriously. Thankfully, the authorities now recognise the importance of infection control. A wound infection, for example, lengthens a patient’s stay in hospital by an average of four days, which results in a major cost. Now we are getting the resources we need to collect and analyse data on different infections. In time, people are going to have a say in where they are treated.

If you have high rates of infection people simply aren’t going to come to your hospital for treatment. So the challenge for the future is to get everyone to improve on their hygiene to keep infection rates down. It’s an ongoing battle and it involves everyone.

About this resource

This resource was first published in ‘Epidemics’ in September 2007.

Topics:
Health, infection and disease, Immunology
Issue:
Epidemics
Education levels:
16–19, Continuing professional development

Real Voices interview: Alison

Real Voices interview: Alison

A patient’s experience of MRSA

“Before I went in, I got a letter from the hospital saying it was high up in the anti-MRSA league tables. I thought: ‘Oh good, that’s one thing I don’t need to worry about.’

After the second operation [there were two stages], I was suddenly moved to an isolated cubicle in the High Dependency Unit (HDU), where full isolation procedures were followed. Here, they told me my swab had shown that I had MRSA but said I had nothing to worry about because it was isolated in the bladder, and they had new antibiotics to treat it there.

At this stage I became very ill. An infection in my chest spread to my lungs and I needed oxygen, a chest drain and a tracheotomy to help me breathe. I was also put on a ventilator for a week. I was delirious during my time in HDU – 33 days in all – and remember very little of it. It was like a dream.

When I improved, I was taken from HDU to another isolation ward. When I asked why I wasn’t going back to the open ward, the nurse hesitated slightly, then said I would find it easier to rest in a single cubicle. Again in this ward, they followed isolation procedures. The hygiene was good, but they talked about MRSA very casually.

All in all I was in hospital for nearly ten weeks – although my operations and recovery period should have only taken three. When I left they gave me a letter for the district nurse. It said I’d had MRSA (‘MRSA’ was highlighted in big red letters).

Overall, although care and prevention was excellent, communication was poor. I have no knowledge of the course of the MRSA. No one was ever open or specific about it. Yet they were always very clear and precise about my operations.”

About this resource

This resource was first published in ‘Epidemics’ in September 2007.

Topics:
Health, infection and disease, Immunology
Issue:
Epidemics
Education levels:
16–19, Continuing professional development

Real Voices interview: Bryan, Usamah and Kanwaljit

Real Voices interview: Bryan, Usamah and Kanwaljit

Meet three people from Buddhist, Islamic and Sikh backgrounds and read their thoughts on evolution

Bryan Appleyard is Vice-President and Chairman of the Buddhist Society. He has been a Buddhist for more than 40 years.

Usamah Hasan is a Senior Lecturer in Computing Science at Middlesex University and an imam at Tawhid Mosque in east London. He is also a member of the Muslim Council of Britain.

Kanwaljit Kaur-Singh is Chair of the British Sikh Education Council and a member of many interfaith organisations. She has written several books on Sikhism, and contributes to radio and television on faith issues.

Do you think humans evolved from ape-like ancestors?

Bryan Appleyard: Buddhism differs from the other major religions in that we don't believe in a creator, or a beginning.

Buddhism is based on the law of change and impermanence - that humans and the universe are in a constant state of flux - and evolution is inherent in that process. We have no opinion on whether we evolved from apes. There's no teaching of it, but equally no denial of it.

Usamah Hasan: There's an ongoing debate in the Muslim world about that. Most traditional clerics resist the idea, because the texts say that Adam was the first human, which means he had no parents. If he had evolved from apes, he would have had two not-fully-human parents.

However, most Muslim scientists do accept some form of Darwinian evolution because of the experimental evidence. They interpret the texts to mean that Adam was the first man with the intellectual and spiritual faculties necessary to make him human.

Kanwaljit Kaur-Singh: The Guru Granth Sahib, the Sikh sacred book, says that only God knows when, how and why He created the universe and the life forms inhabiting it, including us humans. Our attempts to pin down the exact date and timing of the creation, and its mechanisms, are purely conjecture.

Do you think other animals and plants have evolved from earlier forms?

KK-S: It's the same answer. Only God knows what He did - we are all just guessing.

BA: Yes that's a perfectly acceptable view. It's just not a teaching of Buddha.

UH: Yes certainly. For Muslims, plants and animals evolving is not an issue. It is the idea of Adam having evolved from apes that is a bone of contention.

How do you think life on Earth began?

BA: Buddhists don't ask that question. Buddhists believe that there was no beginning and there will be no ending.

KK-S: The Guru Granth Sahib says that before the world began, there was utter darkness - a void. There was only God, and He was in abstract form, in a state of meditation. Then God manifested Himself. He created himself and the universe in his own time and at his own will. He is everywhere, inside and outside everything he created.

What does your religion say about the origins of humans? How have scientific discoveries affected these beliefs?

KK-S: There's no contradiction with scientific discoveries. God created the world as it pleased Him and He's still creating it. Evolution is part and parcel of it.

UH: The Qur'an says that Adam was created from clay, which is a mixture of water and soil. Science fits with this: most of our bodies are made of water, and the clay theory of the origin of life suggests life began when complex organic molecules formed on clay crystals.

How do your religious beliefs influence your thinking about evolution?

UH: God is a given, there is no doubt He exists. Because if God doesn't exist, why is there anything at all? You can't argue against God, no matter how much you find out about evolution.

KK-S: We believe that God is still creating the universe, so it's still evolving.

BA: My religious beliefs don't go against evolution. I have no reason to doubt the origin of the species. Buddhists believe all life forms are constantly changing.

How do you think scientific and religious thinking differ (if they do)?

UH: From the seventh to the 17th century, the Muslims led the world in science and passed their knowledge to Europeans, so science is deeply embedded in the Muslim consciousness.

We believe that the role of science is to understand how God created the universe - and religion is about understanding the meaning behind it. We are told that God's nature is reflected in man, and that's why man has a spiritual role and responsibility in the world.

KK-S: Sikhs don't find any conflict with scientific theory. Scientists talk about the Big Bang. Likewise, the Guru says there was nothing, then God manifested Himself by creating the universe.

As early as 500 years ago, the first Guru, Nanak, said there are millions of galaxies, stars and worlds, all of which may have their own civilisations, prophets and creeds. He also said that the planets stand where they are due to some divine law, which is the power that supports their weight. Both these beliefs have been borne out by science.

Religious thinking is about our job on Earth, which is to lead a good life - to earn honestly, not deprive or exploit others, and to serve God's humanity. In this way we purify our souls so that they can go back to God when we die.

BA: Buddhism is similar to science in its analytical approach to life. Like a doctor, Buddha diagnosed the cause of our human problems in the Four Noble Truths, and offered a practical solution in the Noble Eightfold Path of Practice. Both the problem and the solution, are laid out 'scientifically', as formulas broken down into separate stages. There's no punishment or reward by a divine being. Simply, our intensified actions lead to favourable or unfavourable results. 

The difference is that where science theorises about possible causes of the universe, such as the Big Bang, Buddhist insight about the nature of reality is based on direct personal experience. Buddha told us not to believe what he said, but to find out for ourselves.

Can science and religion coexist?

BA: Yes. Religion and science take different routes to understanding the universe, but they meet at many points.

UH: Yes, they did for centuries. In the early period Muslim scientists were devoutly religious. We believe everything comes from God, including our scientific intellect.

Does it matter if large numbers of people reject evolutionary theory?

UH: It would be a problem if lots of people reject the idea of the sacred. It would also be a problem if people reject evolutionary theory based on blind fundamentalist belief in creationism. But if people reject it on the basis of evidence, that's not a problem. It is irrational religion and science that are problems.

BA: No, it's entirely up to them.

About this resource

This resource was first published in ‘Evolution’ in January 2007 and reviewed and updated in November 2014.

Topics:
Genetics and genomics, History
Issue:
Evolution
Education levels:
16–19, Continuing professional development

Real Voices interview: Michael Reiss

Real Voices interview: Michael Reiss

Meet Michael, a Professor of science education and a priest in the Church of England, who explains how evolutionary thinking affects his Christian ideology

What are your thoughts on a Biblical understanding of the beginning of life?

The early chapters of Genesis have always been read literally by some and more figuratively by others. However, since the first half of the 19th century, advances in geology and biology have meant that it has become increasingly accepted that the world is much older than a literal reading of Genesis suggests.

Indeed, practically all scientists nowadays think the universe is several million times older than such a literal reading implies. (Such a difference is hard to comprehend. I live near Cambridge and work in London. It's a bit like finding that I commute daily, not to London, but to somewhere about twice as far distant as the sun is.) Furthermore, we increasingly know more about the early history of the universe and the course and mechanisms of evolution of life on Earth.

So what differences does evolutionary thinking make to Christian theology?

I can suggest two principal ones.

First, evolutionary thinking - in particular a study of the history of life on Earth with occasional great extinction events - can make it easier for humans to accept that there is an open-endedness to creation. Within Christianity there have always been two ways of understanding God's ordaining of events: one is to suppose that all is foreseen by God, even predetermined; the other is to allow for a lack of predictability. Both ways find support within scripture. The former is more common but the latter view has its supporters. The world is indeed partly in our hands; we cannot suppose that we will be rescued by God's intervention.

Secondly, perhaps especially to biologists such as myself, evolutionary thinking makes it easier for us to see God as concerned with the whole of the created order, even if humans are made in the image of God. We see too, though this begins to anthropomorphise, a God who loves diversity (ten million or so species on the Earth) and who has great patience (if you have waited 15 thousand million years for the first creatures to arrive that can consciously respond to you revealing yourself, you may choose to wait a little longer).

It is worth mentioning that the ways in which evolutionary thinking does not affect Christian theology are far more numerous than the ways in which it does. Nothing, for example, about the occurrence of miracles, life after death, the nature of the sacraments, the worth of prayer, what it is to lead a good life or the doctrines of redemption have anything to do with evolutionary theory.
 

About this resource

This resource was first published in ‘Evolution’ in January 2007 and reviewed and updated in December 2014.

Topics:
Psychology, Health, infection and disease, History
Issue:
Evolution
Education levels:
16–19, Continuing professional development

Related links for ‘Big Picture: Genes, Genomes and Health’

DNA double helix

Related links for ‘Big Picture: Genes, Genomes and Health’

Would you like to explore what else is out there on the web about this topic?

Bioethics Education Programme (BEEP)

An interactive website and virtual learning environment for secondary school science teachers and their students. A teaching resource developed to highlight the moral, ethical, social, economic, environmental and technological implications and applications of biology.

Wellcome Trust Human Genome website

A free resource allowing you to explore the human genome, your health and your future.

Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute

Funded principally by the Wellcome Trust, the Sanger Institute is a world leader in genome sequencing and analysis and is using that knowledge to transform biology and improve healthcare.

Identity: Eight rooms, nine lives

This major exhibition from Wellcome Collection in 2009 explored the tension between the way we view ourselves and how others see us.

Your Genome

Stimulating interest in and discussion of genetic research. Resources include animations, activities and worksheets that support UK curriculum and science specifications for 14-to-19-year-olds.

Inside DNA

A travelling exhibition and website keeping you up to date on the latest developments in the fast-moving world of human genomics and providing a forum for everyone to discuss and debate the issues raised.

Genetic Alliance UK

Genetic Alliance UK is a national alliance of patient organisations with a membership of over 130 charities which support children, families and individuals affected by genetic disorders.

Nowgen Schools Genomics Programme

Nowgens Schools Genomics Programme aims to embed human genomics, (the study of genetics and the human genome) into UK science lessons, exciting pupils about the pace of discovery and engaging them in thinking about how advances in genetics will affect their future lives.

Activities developed for A-level Science in Society

Nature and nurture activities developed and written by Nowgen as part of the Wellcome Trust funded Nowgen School Genomics Project.
 

Lead image:

View of a short piece of a DNA double helix.

Peter Artymiuk, Wellcome Images

About this resource

This resource was first published in ‘Genes, Genomes and Health’ in January 2010.

Topic:
Genetics and genomics
Issue:
Genes, Genomes and Health
Education levels:
16–19, Continuing professional development

Real Voices interview: Jan Upfold

Real Voices interview: Jan Upfold

Meet Jan, a market researcher, who has undergone cosmetic surgery on several occasions

What have you had done?

I had a full facelift from the chin upwards, including liposuction under the chin to redefine my jawline. I had my jowls lifted and tucked behind my ears, and the side of my face tucked back in front of my ears. Skin from my brow was pulled up and tucked under my hairline to remove my frown lines.

Then I had fat taken from my belly and injected into the mannequin (nose-to-mouth) lines on my face and above my top lip, to fill out the fine lines there. And I had Botox for my smile and frown lines. I will have to have the Botox and infills redone, for maintenance, every six months or so.

Jan Upfold, before and after cosmetic surgery

Jan, before and after cosmetic surgery.

Credit:

Jan Upfold

What made you want to have this done?

In my profession – I work as a market research interviewer – as you get older, as a woman, your opinion is less valued. Once you’re 50 you become a bit invisible. The facelift makes me more marketable, employable, more worthwhile professionally.

It doesn’t relate to wanting to get a man. I’m very happily married, and my husband loves the results. He likes showing me off to his friends.

How do you feel about the results?

Very happy. The vast majority of people who have facelifts want to look young. But my main criterion is just to look better. I look normal. Attractive, but ordinary.

People talk about a facelift making you look ‘ten years younger’. Well, on a good day, in reality, I only look five years younger. You might think I was in my early 50s, when I’m nearly 58. If you want to look younger than that, you end up with the obviously lifted face, the horror stories.

What impact have the procedures had on your life?

It cost a lot of money, around £16,000 all together. Since this surgery, we’ve had no major fantastic foreign holidays. It’s a choice, what you spend your money on. Some people choose a BMW. I chose my face.

My friends and lifestyle haven’t changed. A facelift doesn’t change your life. Feeling confident about yourself usually does.

Do you think too much emphasis is placed on appearance these days?

Yes, on appearance and stereotype. Young people have to wear the designated outfit or they’re not cool. Certainly in the young it’s unhealthy. That’s where it starts.

Downloadable resources

About this resource

This resource was first published in ‘How We Look’ in June 2008.

Topics:
Physiology, Careers, Medicine
Issue:
How We Look
Education levels:
16–19, Continuing professional development

Pages