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A stage of social development identified by formation of organized communities, permanent settlements, with oral or written records and history, traditions, religious faiths, laws, shared values, customs, beliefs, and artistic achievements. Other features include specialized occupations, commerce, reliance on trade, and multiple societal sectors, including health care, educational, defense and security services. The process of civilization alters naturally occurring ecosystems. Consequently, there are complex relationships between civilization and disease. Advanced civilizations reduce or control many communicable diseases, but often there is a rising prevalence of other public health problems, including nutritional imbalance associated with sedentary occupations and labor-saving technologies, traffic-related injury and premature death, and social, emotional, and some forms of mental disorders.

Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology.

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