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10 Major Differences Between Sickness and Disease See 2021 Updates

Filed in Education by on June 11, 2021

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Diseases are usually used in context with traditional medicine as they are treated to be cured while illnesses are to be managed. Ill is a general term covering all aspects of illness. Sickness is a specific instance of ill. Read below to see more differences between sickness and disease.

10 Major Differences Between Sickness And Disease

There isn’t any universally accepted definition of disease, but it’s often said: “a disease is what a doctor diagnoses”. A sickness consists of a cause and the negative consequences of that cause.

What is a Disease?

A disease is what a doctor diagnoses. Diseases and medical conditions are what medical doctors can diagnose. Only a medical professional can diagnose a disease.

Diseases are created and often diagnosed without any reference to cause. A case of a disease might be cured, but most diseases are incurable by lack of a definition of “cured”.

Cured is only defined medically and scientifically for a disease caused by a parasite, all other diseases are incurable by lack of a definition of cure. Doctors are trained to diagnose diseases, but there is no medical training in diagnosing “cured”.

What is a sickness?

The terms sickness and illness are generally used as synonyms for the disease. Sickness can be cured, however, cured is not defined medically, nor scientifically, for most illnesses. Medical references do not document CURE for scurvy, nor for the common cold – even though cures are common.

Health and Illness in History

Health is a fundamental human right. The World Health Organization defines it as a “state of complete physical, psychological and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity”.

The health of individuals, however, is also linked to the environment in which they live and especially to their ability to adapt and integrate into their life context.

The relationship with the environment is extremely important because it is that interaction that outlines the concept of normality compared to pathology.

Such normality needs to be contextualized by gender, geographical origin, and by the individuals’ living conditions: as a matter of fact, what is normal for a young person may differ from what is normal for a senior one.

That is to say, the concept of health is indeed relative and it is the result of an interesting evolution of the concept of illness.

From the first approaches – dealing with the mere treatment of the symptoms – to the promise of a free-from-pain society, science and economics have played a significant role in redefining the dualism of health/ illness.

The article reflects on these two concepts, health, and illness, in history and nowadays, and discusses the future of medical science.

Science, after a long period in which it was interpreted as true in an absolute sense, completely changed after Albert Einstein, who, with his theory of relativity, laid the basis of quantum physics.

Almost simultaneously, the aetiological agents of infectious diseases were discovered, and the first effective remedies to control them were introduced.

At first, the arsenical compounds discovered by Paul Ehrlich – which were capable of inhibiting bacterial growth – and then the first antibiotics.

Medicine thus became somewhat omnipotent, promising a free-from-pain society.

The discoveries of the new physics did not affect the certainties of twentieth-century medicine. This lack of integration has led scientific-medical thinking to the reality we experience today.

There are Three Basic Types of Elementary Illnesses and They can be Represented in a Circle

There are three basic types of elementary illnesses

  • causal illnesses elements have an active cause. The cure is to address the cause.
  • injury illnesses elements consist of damage to body, mind, spirit, or community. The cause is gone. The cause is in the past. Injury illnesses are cured by healing.
  • blockage illnesses elements block the natural healthy flows of life. The cause is gone, in the past. Blockage illnesses are cured by transformation, which often causes damage that must be healed.

Sickness is a social role, a status, a negotiated position in the world, a bargain struck between the person henceforward called ‘sick’, and a society that is prepared to recognize and sustain him.

The security of this role depends on a number of factors, not least the possession of that much-treasured gift, the disease. Sickness based on illness alone is a most uncertain status. But even the possession of disease does not guarantee equity in sickness.

Notable Differences Between Sickness and Disease

1. Disease is a medical diagnosis with specific diagnostic criteria, pathophysiology, and management options.

2. Disease is something that causes illness in one’s body & sickness is the feeling of not being well.

3. A patient’s subjective experience of symptoms is referred to as illness.

4. Simple, or elementary illnesses have specific causes.

5. A sickness can be cured, however, cured is not defined medically, nor scientifically.

6. Sicknesses are social and cultural conceptions of a condition. Whoever, these include reactions such as fear or rejection, which influence how the patient reacts.

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CSN Team.

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