Introduction to health psychology pdf psychology is the study of psychological and behavioral processes in health, illness, and healthcare. It is concerned with understanding how psychological, behavioral, and cultural factors contribute to physical health and illness. Psychological factors can affect health directly.
Behavioral factors can also affect a person’s health. Health psychologists take a biopsychosocial approach.
By understanding psychological factors that influence health, and constructively applying that knowledge, health psychologists can improve health by working directly with individual patients or indirectly in large-scale public health programs. Health psychologists work in a variety of settings: alongside other medical professionals in hospitals and clinics, in public health departments working on large-scale behavior change and health promotion programs, and in universities and medical schools where they teach and conduct research. The four divisions include clinical health psychology, public health psychology, community health psychology, and critical health psychology. Advanced credentialing in the US as a clinical health psychologist is provided through the American Board of Professional Psychology.