Tong Yue, Dalian University, China
Due to the special historical and cultural characteristics, as well as the rapid economic development in recent years, Chinese residents had a lot of changes in their health needs and lifestyles. They gradually formed self-care methods with their own characteristics and this article introduces the self-care characteristics of Chinese residents mainly from the following aspects.
Chinese traditional medicine-related self-care strategies
Chinese traditional massage has a long history and is implemented mainly by means of manual stimulation on certain parts of the body surface. Through this, Qi and blood can flow from the surface to the interior and through the transmission and reflection of Meridians and collaterals, regulate the functions of the Viscera. It also can mobilize the body’s resistance to diseases, achieving the goal of preventing and treating diseases. Chinese traditional massage is economical, easy to learn and use, and has no side effects, making it a popular health care method among Chinese people. Massage parlors and beauty salons offer massage services. Foot massage parlours and children’s massage parlors are everywhere in the streets of Chinese cities. People also do acupressure at home under the guidance of professionals or professional books. A study had shown that the use of acupressure within an hour before going to bed every night on acupoints such as Yongquan, Shenmen, Yintang, Sun, Sanyinjiao, Baihui points (each point for 3 to 5 minutes), could significantly improve sleep quality.
“Yangshengtang” broadcast on Beijing Satellite TV channel is undoubtedly a daily health preserving TV program that many Chinese elderly people must watch. Since its broadcast in 2009 it has always had good audience ratings. “Yangshengtang” often invites China’s top experts in traditional Chinese medicine, using studio interviews combined with featured films, to systematically introduce traditional Chinese health culture and target practical self-care methods in an easy-to-understand way.
In China, the most popular group sport aimed at self-health care is square dancing, which is a rhythmic dance performed spontaneously by residents in open spaces such as squares and courtyard dams. Square dancing is a kind of fitness dance performed by non-professional dancers and belongs exclusively to common people. A survey on square dancing showed that 86.55% of the square dancing participants were over 40 years old and 87.63% were women. According to data released by the State General Administration of Sports in 2015, square dancing was one of the most popular sports among people over 50 years old in China, with a participation rate of about 10%. According to estimates by the CCTV News Center, more than 100 million people nationwide take part in square dancing every day. The increase in participation in square dancing in recent years may be the real reason for the increase in the popularity of sports activities in China.
Digital Health Self-Care Models
With the advent of the digital age, the popularity of smartphones has provided new ideas for residents’ health management. Smartphone Apps and wearable health devices can help residents monitor their health status and achieve healthy self-management more scientifically, intuitively and conveniently. And it is worth mentioning in China that on January 21,2011, Tencent launched WeChat, a free social app that provided instant messaging service for smart terminals, which has become the most important contact tool for Chinese residents. WeChat had 1,202.5 million monthly active accounts as of May 2020 according to the company’s official micro-blog account. WeChat has had a big impact on communication, shopping, payment and health management of Chinese people. The WeChat sport can help WeChat friends share and rank their daily steps and click the like button for each other to monitor and encourage their daily exercise. There are also many health related public platforms on WeChat, some of which are public welfare models adopted by medical institutions or scientific research institutions, and others are profit oriented business models adopted by enterprises, but either way they provide residents with a wealth of health care information. Many nurses also helped patients better take care of themselves at home by setting up WeChat groups, posting WeChat videos or health education materials, or implementing a daily WeChat posting method to carry out nursing interventions and follow-ups. The results have shown that, the nursing intervention model based on WeChat was beneficial to nurse-patient communication, improved compliance and satisfaction of patients, reduced negative emotion, and was the innovation and development of extended care services outside the hospital.
Dalian University, China
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General Administration of Sports of China (2015). Survey Bulletin on the status of National Fitness activities in 2014. General Administration of Sports of China. http://www.sport.gov.cn/n316/n340/c212777/content.html