How Social Environment Affects An Individual's Health

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Sociologists spend a good deal of their time studying how the social environment affects the individual and how an individuals’ health is impacted by these factors. When exploring the life of an individual, it is important to consider the environment in which they reside. This can be as large as their country or as small as the home and family. One micro-society that is important to consider is the neighborhood.
The term neighborhood has many definitions. From a political aspect, a city may define a neighborhood as the geographical group in a designated political precinct (Data Center Research). The real estate community likely subscribes to “the small group of houses in the immediate vicinity of one’s house” (Data Center Research). The functioning definition of a neighborhood to a sociologist likely includes the following: “an area surrounding a local institution patronized by residents, such as a church, school or social agency” (Data Center Research). There are social, physical and psychological components of a neighborhood. Socially, a neighborhood includes residents who are geographically close to one another. This may include the houses across the street, or an apartment complex. Community centers are
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Urban neighborhoods can include visible signs of disadvantage. Abandoned buildings can be used for squatting (where those without housing go to stay illegally), as shooting galleries (were people go to use drugs), or for other illegal activity. Low availability of employment can encourage residents to provide for their families in illegitimate ways, such as resorting to crime, which increases danger in the neighborhood and stress for the residents. The fear of violence and criminal activity can cause the residents to attempt to “keep to themselves,” and that isolation limits otherwise available social supports in the

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