Written By Granite Recovery Centers
Clinically Reviewed By Cheryl Smith MS,MLADC
May 7, 2021
Nature vs. Nurture is a puzzling topic that has raised serious concern in psychology over decades. The approach is often one-sided, with each side arguing the value of one over the other. It leads to a social debate majorly geared to determining the cause of your intelligence.
Philosophers have tried to study and test their effects on human culture, personality, and behavior. They base it on nature describing the genetic traits, behaviors, and dispositions of an individual. It is also through the study of nurture, which relies on the environment, experience, and culture.
The Nature vs. Nurture Debate
The debate of Nature vs. Nurture is a psychological enigma, and philosophers often have different opinions. They suggest that certain traits occur naturally, disregarding change in the environment. Others support that inheritance throughout evolution affects the character and behavioral changes, making you unique from others. But to some, experiences you encountered while growing up contribute to who you are today. It is through learning where you receive training, regardless of your genetic background. It helps you have a specific character, physical attribute, or behavior.
Changes in culture affect the understanding of the debate through the influence of theories of behaviorism. Your strengths and weaknesses link up with your intelligence, and these are based on environmental and genetic factors. The latter affects the brain size, and its biochemistry determines your movements, feelings, and behavior. Your biochemistry also influences the different aspects of cognition that affect thinking, judging, remembering, and solving problems. Addiction is also a question for debate on whether it thrives due to the influence of nurture or nature. Research proves that specific genes affect the taste of alcohol or consumption of drugs, while others show that peer pressure influences it. If you are suffering from a substance use disorder, visit Granite Recovery Centers to receive the best addiction treatment services.
Experiments on Nature vs. Nurture
The debate on Nature vs. Nurture came to life through many experiments centered on the effects of genes and the environment on development. It took philosophers many years to make sense of the matter. Here are some experiments that were tested to answer the nature versus nurture debate.
- Studies of twins: Studies on identical and fraternal twins separated at birth are the most common experiments on Nature vs. Nature. Their similar genetics play a significant role in supporting the fact that nature affects your character, behavior, and intelligence. The bond between identical and fraternal twins causes a similarity in sexual orientation and religiosity.
- The concept of a language-acquisition device: The language-acquisition device tests the influence of genetics and the environment on the production of language. It studies your mental capacity from birth and how you develop to maturity. It does this while focusing on the changes in the environment, experiences, and culture. Its success proved that genetic disposition and changes in the environment contribute to your uniqueness.
- Parenting styles: A study on the influence of parents and guardians played a significant role in the debate. It proves that their behaviors, including etiquette, movement, and reaction when faced with issues, affected a child’s growth. Children learn these through daily observations or via social media and peers.
- Domestication of animals: Domestication of animals focuses on nurturing animals to meet your needs by encouraging domesticated behaviors. These include encouraging a cat or dog to be your companion, feeding sheep and cows for food, and using donkeys for work. It’s through a series of daily activities that leads to successful domestication.
Impact of Nature on Your Health
Genetic inheritance influences your physical and mental health and may change depending on environmental factors. They include common physical traits in the family, a hereditary disease, or an addiction. When suffering from the latter, you need to take up primary treatment in a rehab center before opting for a 12-Step Program to achieve sobriety.
- Effects on physical health: You can also consider maintaining good physical health, especially when you have a hereditary disease. Robust physical health promotes strong bones and muscles, leading to improved health, fitness, and living quality. All these require commitment, patience, and hard work to achieve full recovery. Daily exercise increases your mobility, leading to better functioning of body organs. It strengthens the heart muscles and lowers blood pressure to prevent the development of cardiovascular diseases. You also get to maintain the proper weight that is essential to reducing the risks of being obese. Eating healthy foods reduces cholesterol levels, leading to a lower chance of inheriting stroke or coronary heart disease. Taking foods with less and healthy sugar, and avoiding drugs or alcohol fights genetic diabetes.
- Effects on mental health: Inherited genes can also lead to the development of mental health conditions that may affect your everyday life. Without seeking proper help, it may lead to distress, poor physical health, and an unproductive lifestyle. In extreme situations, it affects your job, relationships, and finances. This can then lead to a stressful life. Bipolar disorder is one of the most likely developed disorders that cause increased restlessness, irritability, and depression. It makes you feel hopeless and sad, leading to a lack of interest in daily activities. In some cases, you experience episodes full of overwhelming happiness, joy, and energy. You may also inherit schizophrenia that causes hallucinations, delusions, and trouble making sense of thoughts. It affects speech delivery, causing you to have low self-esteem.
Effects of Nurture on Your Health
The environment plays a crucial role in nurturing your physical and mental health through the influence of culture and life experiences. They affect your religious beliefs, spoken language, social organizations, lifestyle, and customs around you. It includes your area of residence, climatic conditions, and the type of people interacting with you.
- Effects on physical health: Different places on earth expose you to high chances of having specific physical attributes or illnesses. It includes the type of vegetation surrounding you, lighting in the house, or your friends. Strive to surround yourself with positivity to improve your health and that of those around you. Temperature, altitude, and pollutants also have a significant contribution to your health. Living in cold regions exposes you to common cold or frostbites, while in hot weather, you can get heatstroke or heat cramps. Long-term exposure to polluted air causes loss of lung capacity and later decreased lung function. Poor lighting in the house or room leads to night blindness that occurs after long periods of exposure. It starts with blurry vision, then short-sightedness, and can develop into a cause for concern.
- Effects on mental health: Nurture influences the severity of your behavior, character, and personality developed over time. It depends on whether the environment offers positive or negative energy to determine the development of a condition. You must study an environment before involving or engaging in it. Experiencing bullying or physical abuse in school, at home, or out with people may cause trauma. It may lead to heavy drinking or drug addiction that takes a negative toll on your life. This trauma requires immediate attention, and you’ll need to immerse yourself in an environment that is nurturing and loving.
In cases where the latter is ineffective, try reaching out to a rehab center to receive professional help and guidance. Granite Recovery Centers offers efficient and effective addiction treatment services through our Mental Health Program.
Nature-based therapy focuses on genetics and hereditary treatment to relieve or heal a disorder. It involves sharing genetic traits that affect your well-being with a therapist who will not judge nor criticize you.
- Based on genetics: Doctors often inquire whether anyone in your family experienced a disease before beginning treatment. They do this to gauge the root cause of the illness. It helps prevent further damage caused by prescription medication. It helps them advise on the best living habits to aim for with the goal of bettering your condition. The therapy ends up transforming your behavior, health, and emotions into positive outcomes. Your relationships end up being productive both in life and at work. Our therapy can lead to an increase in productivity.
- Based on disposition: A mind is a powerful tool that dictates thoughts, movement, breathing, digestion, and memories. When combined with character, it determines how you relate with those around you. Therapy based on disposition helps reduce negative thoughts and memories that may prevent you from living a positive life. It may require that you spare ample time to ensure you can devote enough time to your therapeutic sessions. Try opening up each time, explaining the root cause of an issue to ensure you benefit from the sessions.
Nurture-based therapy focuses on your beliefs and behaviors based on the immediate environment. It tries to understand where you come from, the behaviors of those around you, and your cultural upbringing. It combines all of these to find an immediate yet effective solution to keep your mind at ease.
- Based on beliefs: Beliefs are entirely dependent on your upbringing, which involves your family, peers, and neighbors. They influence your faith, culture, education, experiences, and mentors in the present and future. Despite this, they do not solely control your decision, though they do affect your decision-making in minor ways. Taking up therapy geared to help you heal from negative beliefs is one of the best things to do in life. It builds your mental health and helps maintain good physical health for a better tomorrow.
- Based on behavior: A range of care with a tailored treatment program aimed at changing negative behavior influences growth. When you accompany it with follow-up options crucial for maintaining good behavior, you can live a positive life. Start by talking to your therapist about the influence of the environment on your behavior. Your therapist may use reinforcements to mold you into exhibiting better behavior. Your therapist may also assign you a mentor or role model who had similar characteristics but changed for the better.
The Interaction Between Nature and Nurture
Focusing on one element over the other does not help in realizing both potentials. Instead, it’s better to prioritize all of them in equal measures and weigh their supremacy based on facts. It helps you understand the influence of the Nature vs. Nurture debate on your development.
Both of them affect your growth. Without one, the other cannot thrive effectively. It requires that you understand the importance of each and strive to use it to your advantage. Here are some examples of the interaction between heredity and the environment.
- Achieving pitch: Inherited pitch helps you hit notes even without taking up music classes. It can last throughout your lifetime. But achieving high notes will require that you go the extra mile of attending music training or having a personal tutor. It requires that you sacrifice ample time, money, effort, and patience to reach your full potential. You end up having positive results after combining the two, which can then lead to a successful music career. It nurtures you into an all-natural musician who does not require accompaniments.
- Growing in height: Certain families are short due to genetic inheritance that may affect you when in a controlled environment. But environmental factors such as eating healthy meals and exercising will lead to your growth in height over time. It’s not a guarantee that your offspring will inherit your height. The balance of nature and nurture affects your growth in both height and size.
Nature Versus Nurture: Is There a Winner?
Trying to prove which is more dominant between nature and nurture is a futile task that you can’t achieve with ease. It’s because both of them play a significant role in your behavior and character development. Instead of focusing on their differences, it’s better to figure out how they work together to make you unique.