Hygiene is an all-inclusive aspect of our life essential for a healthy well-being. It is the factor that determines the health of our body. Hygiene is the practice of maintaining cleanliness in our daily lives in order to prevent the occurrence of diseases.
Individual hygiene can also play an important role in the hygiene of the society. It is our self-awareness that we are part of a community that urges us to maintain hygiene in our lives. Thus hygiene is an essential part of our day to day lives.
We as individuals can make sure that we practice hygiene. Our food habits, cleanliness and the awareness that we are responsible for our own health shall ease the situation.
We need to ensure that we keep ourselves healthy and clean. For instance, if you are suffering from a cold or a cough, make sure that you use a clean handkerchief or tissue.
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During the time, take necessary precautions so that no one ever gets affected by sitting near you. These are communicable diseases and can easily spread. This is why we have to take the necessary steps to prevent its spread rather than find a cure for it. If we practice a hygienic lifestyle, it will in turn determine the hygiene of our society.
Hygiene of the society
Along with individual hygiene, maintaining hygiene of the society is also an important component. Individual and societal hygiene are the two sides of the same coin. Our hygiene is determined by our surroundings and the maintenance of hygiene among other people.
For example, if people live in an overcrowded area with no sanitation facilities and garbage piled up on streets, it is an unhygienic area. People living in slums face this problem the most. In this case, maintaining individual hygiene alone cannot be of any use. Society as a whole should practice hygiene in order to create a clean environment for them.
Poverty – The leading cause of lack of Hygiene
The poor are the worst victims of the lack of proper hygiene among people. Rising population and increased migration to cities may leave the government in a fix, unable to accommodate all in their development policies. But that is no reason for denying them their right to a dignified existence.
Many a time we blame the poor their plight claiming they are responsible for their own hygiene. How can that happen if we don’t give them the basic necessities of life?
The truth is that it is the upper class sections of society who inflict the most harm upon them. Waste collected from residential areas and factories are dumped near slums. They may have encroached upon land but this was a necessity for survival. Lack of sanitation facilities forces them to openly defecate on streets. This is a major cause of the spread of diseases.
Caste discrimination – An indirect reason for Poverty and Lack of Hygiene
Members of lower caste are ill-treated and forced to live in unhygienic conditions. They are made to do manual scavenging or clean toilets based on the ancient belief that they should practice their hereditary occupation. In such a situation, one can never simply ask the people to mend their ways.
It is mindsets that have to change. We need to realize that the poor never wanted to live such a life. It is the circumstances that pushed them into such an existence. As long as factors such as poverty and caste discrimination exist, proper hygiene in society will always be a far cry. Thus, we should take steps in this direction.
Swachh Bharat Mission
The present government’s initiative to transform India into a cleaner and greener country is the most revolutionary of all. Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, a mission put forth by Prime Minister Narendra Modi aims to create a clean India according to the vision of Mahatma Gandhi.
It not only aims to maintain cleanliness but also practice hygiene by creating toilets and other civic amenities. Swachh Bharat Abhiyan is a mission where the citizens also take up the initiative to practice hygiene through their own innovative methods.
Students are encouraged to engage in cleanliness drives and create awareness in their community about the importance of hygiene. This mission also aims to eradicate manual scavenging. This has proved to be a holistic approach towards hygiene and cleanliness.
The way forward
We have set our future path with many goals to achieve and dreams to fulfill. This may be including our career choices, our ambition or our resolve to face challenges that may occur. In the race to get ahead of others, we must not ignore our health.
Health and hygiene are also important so that we can achieve our goals and maintain a youthful vigor. These determine whether we really do fulfill our dreams. Thus, we can say that a hygienic lifestyle plays an important role in determining the future course of our life.