Do you know what preventative health care is? Preventative health care means taking steps towards health BEFORE you get sick. It took years for doctors and scientists to discover what things keep us healthy and what might make us sick and they still are discovering new things every day!
Before scientists found that germs make us sick they had no way of knowing what caused sickness. This made it hard to focus on prevention, instead healthcare was focused on curing sickness or finding ways to live with it.
One way doctors help prevent sickness today is through families’ health history. Many diseases are genetic meaning you are more likely to have a disease if someone in your family also has it.
Check out the Health History Timeline to discover when certain health methods were first put into practice!
1796- The first vaccine was developed for Smallpox.
1816- The stethoscope, or the tool doctors use to listen to your heart, was invented. Curious about heart health? Learn more here!
1867- Joseph Lister published the Antiseptic Principle of the Practice of Surgery. This was the first protocol encouraging doctors to wash their hands in between patients. Now we wash our hands all the time, track how often you wash your hands here!
1870- The germ theory of disease was published. This is the first time doctors said sickness is caused by germs and not just a random occurrence.
1907- The very first blood transfusion. Now 43,000 pints of blood are donated each day!
1967- The first human heart transplant is formed!
1980- The World Health Organization declares that smallpox is eradicated. This was the first time a disease was eliminated.
2008- The first Activity Guidelines for Americans was released, this was the first time Americans were told how much exercise they should be getting to keep them healthy!
Learn about your family’s history with the Picture the Past Challenge!