Health psychology is concerned with understanding how biology, behavior and social situations influence illness and health. Because of its use, other terms such as behavioral medicine and medical psychology are used with the term health psychology. Health and illness are affected by many factors. While contagious and hereditary diseases are common, there are many behavioral and psychological factors that can impact overall physical well-being and various medical conditions. Because health psychology emphasize how behavior influences health, it is uniquely positioned to help people change the behavior that contribute to health and well-being. Psycho0logists who work in health field may conduct applied research on how to prevent un-healthy behavior such as such as smoking and look for new ways to encourage healthy actions such as exercising. For example, while most people know that high sugar in their diet is not good for their health but they continuously maintain their habit regardless of the consequences. Health psychologists look at the psychological factors that influence these health choices and explore ways to motivate people to make better health choices. Social psychology typically explains human behavior as a result of the interaction of the mental states and the social situations. Social psychology examines factors that cause behaviors to unfold in a given way in the presence of others. They study conditions under which certain behavior, actions and feelings occur. Social psychology is concerned with the way these feelings, thoughts, beliefs, intentions, and goals are cognitively constructed and how these mental representations, in turn, influence our interaction with others. Social psychology is the scientific study of how people’s thoughts, feelings and behaviors are influenced by the actual imagined or implied presence of other. In this definition, scientific refers to the empirical investigation using scientific method. The terms, thoughts, feelings, behaviors refer to psychological variables that can be measured in humans. Focused on the psychological aspects of individuals within a community environment, community psychology explores characteristics such as interdependence, adaptation, diplomacy, empowerment, social justice and so on. It is also referred to as critical psychology.
Essentially, social psychology is all about understanding how each person’s individual behavior is influenced by social environment in which that behavior takes place. Social psychologists are also interested in the role that social influence has on behavior and decision making. Social psychologists study how social influence, social perception and social interaction influence individual and group behavior. Some social psychologists focus on conducting research on human behavior. These professionals might work in university setting or they might be employed by businesses or government agencies. Other social psychologists are interested in discovering solutions to real world problems. Social psychology allows us to gain a greater appreciation for how our social perception effect our interaction with other people. In general, social psychologists have a preference for laboratory based empirical finding. There are numerous topics that social psychologists investigate in their research. Many of these subjects are related to social influence, social perception and social interaction. Social psychology is a fascinating topic that has yielded a great deal of research on how people behave in groups.