Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is a psychological theory that suggests that human beings have five different levels of conditions which are the most basic and physiological. First, there are physical needs, which can be defined as water, food, warm/cool air, breathable air, sexual expression, and sleep. The next step is made up of safety requirements that comprise protection from risky elements like predators and weather. The need for belonging and love are social needs that include families and friends or a person’s desire to be loved or friendship. The fourth stage is self-esteem, which provides achievement and control over one’s life/environment. The final step is self-actualization that includes achieving your potential by utilizing the ability to think creatively and solve problems.
The environment’s health is a part of Maslow’s second stage in his hierarchy of requirements. The second stage focuses on the need to be safe. When one’s fundamental physiological needs are met, then comes the requirement to ensure the environment’s safety. Pollution from the air is a barrier to fulfilling this safety need and a case study of how health issues in the atmosphere could influence an individual’s capacity to attain self-actualization.
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