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International Self-Care Day – Treat Yourself to Better Health

International Self-Care Day – Treat Yourself to Better Health

Author -  Dr. Lakshmi Venkataraman, MD
Medically Reviewed by 
The Medindia Medical Review Team on July 23, 2019 at 4:22 PM
  • International Self-Care Day is observed on the 24th July each year to raise awareness about the importance of self-care as a key factor in maintaining optimal physical and emotional health
  • Self-care needs to be practiced every day for life, i.e., 24 hours of the day for seven days of the week. Being physically and mentally healthy prevents chronic diseases
  • Self-care is simple to achieve and all of us should resolve to make a start to take better care of health by simple measures such as eating and sleeping well and gradually aiming for larger goals

International Self-Care Day (ISD) is observed on the 24th July each year and aims to raise awareness about the importance of taking care of our own health to be more productive, as well as to be in a better position to help others and the society at large.

History of International Self-Care Day (ISD)

ISD was founded by the International Self-Care Foundation and has been in function from 2011. The foundation organizes campaigns and programs to educate and promote self-care in the community. The date of ISD has been chosen as 24th July to underscore the importance of practicing self-care at all times, i.e., 24 hours of the day for seven days of the week.

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What We Can Do to Raise Self-Care Awareness

  • For a start, each one of us must begin to take better care of our health in order to promote self-care and to urge others to practice self care
  • Share educational and inspirational messages on social media such as Facebook & Twitter about the merits of self-care and that it is not a selfish thing to take care of one's health
  • Doctors and health care workers must educate the public, especially women about the need to take care of their health for the health of their family and community
  • Self-care as a way of life must be actively promoted through print and visual media through evocative and thought-provoking articles and programs

Seven Pillars of Self-Care

  • Health literacy - Be aware of lifestyle measures to remain healthy and avoid unhealthy habits such as smoking, poor sleep, stressful life and unhealthy diet
  • Self-awareness - Knowing ones strengths and limitations. Doing things we love and enjoy. Remaining optimistic and having realistic goals
  • Exercise and physical activity - Exercise is the key to prevent several lifestyle diseases such as diabetes and hypertension and chemicals released by the brain during physical activity have been shown to improve mood
  • Healthy diet - A healthy well-balanced diet is necessary to avoid nutritional diseases such as malnutrition and obesity. Take plenty of fruits and vegetables and avoid junk foods
  • Avoid risky behaviors - Avoiding risky behaviors such as smoking, excess alcohol intake, sexual promiscuity, recreational drugs, etc are important to prevent serious illnesses including cancer
  • Practice good hygiene - Practicing good hygiene such as handwashing, not sharing razors, needles or toothbrushes, proper washing and cooking of vegetables and meats can prevent infectious diseases such as amebiasis, gastroenteritis, hepatitis B, C and HIV
  • Optimal use of health care services - It is important to use health care services optimally, practice safe self-medication and use of other health care products

Regular Self-Care Measures For Physical and Mental Wellbeing

Here are some self-care tips that help improve your physical and mental health.
  • Take a walk and get some fresh air every day
  • Meeting up with friends at least once or twice a month
  • Plan fun outings with family
  • Visit or call your parents regularly
  • Going to bed early and waking up early
  • Reducing phone or mobile time
  • Setting aside time for simple stretching exercises, yoga and meditation
  • Learning to say no if you feel it is going to be stressful
  • Maintain a diary and note down about your feelings at the end of each day and things that routinely upset or stress you out
  • Eat plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables and have healthy snacks at hand
  • Delegate and encourage kids to help in housework
  • Power napping after a tiring day to refresh you
  • Take up a leisure activity you enjoy such as reading, gardening or painting
  • Watching movies with family
  • Listening to your favorite music
  • Volunteer to help in your local community center
In summary, International Self-Care Day aims to create awareness about self-care as a key component of not only individual health, but community health as a whole. Let us all begin to practice self-care and gradually achieve our self-care goals.

References :
  1. Taking Care on International Self-Care Day - (https://www.artwithimpact.org/taking-care-international-self-care-day/)
  2. International Self-Care Day - (https://isfglobal.org/international-self-care-day/)

Source: Medindia
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