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Family: Relationship to Health

Family communication and family relationships have a pervasive and far reaching influence on physical and psychological health. Many scientists believe that these social relationships are as strongly linked to health outcomes as diet, exercise, and smoking. In addition to the obvious genetic traits and tendencies that are passed on through family generations, families create environments through their communication behaviors that promote health and well-being or create risk factors for distress and illness.

Positive Relationship to Health

Although family relationships have multiple forms, marriage is a family relationship that appears particularly consequential to health. Married people live longer and in better health than their unmarried peers. Also, people who have ended a marriage in divorce often experience more precipitous declines in health than their single or widowed peers. ...

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