Explain how poor physical health may affect your social health.

Expert Answers
poetrymfa eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Poor physical health can be crippling to social health when severe enough. This is particularly true for those suffering from chronic illnesses which may be unseen but felt (such as colitis, IBS, chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, etc.). Experiencing these debilitating conditions can lead to social isolation, or the absence of healthy social relationships, due to the fact that one is often too ill to participate in or meet the expectations of normal social behaviors, yet are still socially regarded (again, because of the "unseen" element of the illness) as well enough to do so. This can also trigger mental health related issues, which act as an unending cycle: physical health prevents one from engaging socially, which negatively impacts mental health, which further reinforces physical illness, which further prevents one from engaging socially, and so on.

Those with good physical health, on the other hand, are physically able bodied enough to pursue social integration. 

Conversely, our social health also drastically impacts our physical health. Our relationship to our family and the environment in which we were raised dictates much of our understanding of how to handle our own bodies effectively. Those raised in unhealthy households—ones which are populated by poor eating habits (like the frequent consumption of fast foods, absence of vegetables, imbalanced diets, etc.), a lack of emphasis on physical activity and exercise, or abuse of alcohol and drugs—are far more likely to engage in those same unhealthy behaviors as adults. These physical patterns, which were established socially as a precedent at a young age, become engrained as "normal."