Wellness: The Dialectic of Illness


Professor Jensen, Faculty of Nursing, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada T6G 2E3.


From a review of empirical and theoretical work, a model of wellness-illness evolved. The unfolding of events associated with wellness-illness is depicted as a generic paradigm with health, disease, wellness and illness existing in a dialectical relationship. Although distinct, health-disease and wellness-illness are neither mutually exclusive nor polar opposites. Rather, they are one in the same process, acknowledging the changing person in the changing world. Wellness-illness is the human experience of actual or perceived function-dysfunction through the interaction of cognitive-affective dimensions. This experience arises out of intrapersonal, interpersonal, health-disease-related and extra-personal factors.