Social Determinants of Health (SDOH) are the conditions in which someone lives in that affects their overall well-being. One of these is one’s social/community life, which is a crucial aspect and influences personal and collective health overall.
Social life includes the relationships people have with each other, a sense of belonging in their community, and how much they participate in and contribute to society. A good social network can act as a barrier between health problems by giving emotional support and assistance, as communities with good social life often have better access to health information and resources, and encourages good behaviors with a supportive environment.
On the other hand, social isolation can have detrimental effects on health. People who experience loneliness or discrimination are at higher risks for conditions like depression and anxiety. Experiences such as these can also lead to chronic stress, increasing the risk for diseases such as hypertension and heart disease.
Collective action in communities also plays a role in shaping health outcomes. Communities that come together to demand things such as better living conditions can positively influence the overall health outcomes for all members. Therefore, making inclusive and supportive communities is vital for public health. Areas that prioritize collective action and community ties end up having better outcomes for people. Recognizing social and community life as an important piece of social determinants of health is important to making a healthier life for everyone.