• Dr Frantz Pierre-Louis & Lloyd Pierre-Louis

Entertainment and Health

Updated: May 10


Entertainment is defined in the online dictionary as ‘’ the action of providing or being provided with amusement or enjoyment. (Or as) an event, performance or activity designed to entertain others.’’ No wonder almost everybody is constantly looking for some kind of entertainment according to his particular passion or area of interest, whether it be sports, music, spectacles, video games, etc. As mentioned in a Wikipedia source, this particular ‘’experience’’ associated with entertainment could take multiple forms:

“The experience of being entertained has come to be strongly associated with amusement, so that one common understanding of the idea is fun and laughter, although many entertainments have a serious purpose.”

And ‘’serious purpose’’ indeed, because health is literally serious business in a constantly evolving world where almost every aspect of human life seems to be monitored by technology, and thus encapsulated in a screen somewhere (cellphone, tablet, electronic watch or similar high-tech device).

As a matter of fact, a report entitled Health Entertainment: Bringing the Fun to Wellness and Fitness[1] put the emphasis on this matter as follows:

‘’ "Health entertainment is a perfect example of technology’s imprint on the science of human behavioral changes," said Harry Wang, Director of Mobile & Health Research at Parks Associates. “Technology, in the form of attractive hardware and easy-to-use software and applications, is gradually re-inventing patient engagement models and making self-care less dreadful to most patients." '’

That being said, factors such as incursion of technology in the entertainment experience adds a relative level of complexity in the management of health per say by those who are less familiar with the use of technology. For instance, elderly people don’t always have the ability to manage their health through monitoring devices. Therefore, a certain form of education is necessary to tackle this issue. Thus, in an article entitled Entertainment for health[2], the author Aurora Silayan-Go stated the following:

‘’ Public health is no longer just a medical issue but one of public life-style. And the prescriptions need no longer be written by health professionals alone. Entertainment for public education and public health can be a powerful approach, as shown by a multi-media campaign for young people carried out in the Philippines.'’

In light of the aforementioned statements, the role of entertainment in facilitating public education for improving public health is relatively important, particularly when considering the ubiquitous role of technology in our society.

However, what if we could make sustaining and embracing healthy habits and activities an entertainment created in our own individual mind (even without technological gadgets)? If we could, that would be a major winner because we would hit multiple targets on a single shot (without the risk of being addicted or dependent of technology)… And that, in itself, would be the biggest entertainment of all…

[1] http://www.parksassociates.com/bento/shop/samples/Parks%20Assoc%20Health%20Entertainment%20TOC.pdf

[2] http://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/10665/53794/1/WHF_1990_11(3)_p297-301.pdf

#Entertainment #Screens #Publichealth #Publiceducation #Technology

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