There’s a way to slow the onset of death … temporarily


    By Ksenia Kurenysheva

    ‘Did you know that 74% of all annual deaths worldwide that could have been avoided are due to non-communicable [diseases]?’ 

    This extract from the Developmental Aid ‘News stream’ presents an intriguing idea of avoidable mortality, or in simple terms, avoidable death. 

    Avoidable mortality means that a death could have been prevented if actions were taken beforehand, such as providing the patient with appropriate medication. These preventable deaths are typically caused by non-communicable diseases (NCDs) which are diseases that develop over time and lead to a life-long commitment to care for the patient. 

    Prime examples of non-communicable diseases include strokes, cancer, diabetes, mental health diseases and chronic respiratory diseases (such as asthma).

    But why is this regarded as such a major issue, considering that you probably didn’t even know about it?

     Well, firstly, many NCDs share five common major risk factors; physical inactivity, unhealthy diets, pollution of air, tobacco usage and harmful alcohol use. Any individual at any point in their lives can be exposed to one or even all five of these factors, which negatively affects one’s body, after which they must be treated or directed to a medical facility. 

    Secondly, NCDs are now regarded as an epidemic, meaning that it has affected a vast number of people in a certain area (a.k.a our Earth). So, as a result of the plethora of people affected, medical facilities (such as clinics and hospitals) become overwhelmed with patients, which results in stressed and exhausted medical staff, who in some cases are even too drained to treat. 

    Not only this, but NCDs can also have an awful impact on the economy, as seen in countries that are victims of poverty. After all, healthcare prices are astonishingly high, which places excessive and unjust pressure on the families of those suffering from non-communicable diseases.

    Thus, it is equally important to understand how NCDs can be prevented and gradually cut down to a much more reasonable number. So, how is this possible? Well, the World Health Organisation has a whole page dedicated to this matter, and some of the more realistic prevention methods include limiting consumption of tobacco and alcohol while eating a balanced diet, partaking in physical activity, or/and raising awareness around NCDs, so others can educate themselves on the topic. These techniques aim to improve both your and others awareness around the topic: a win-win! So, take a moment to read through the resources, and recommend the same for a friend too.

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