Their life is surrounded by church, family, home, and work. Their simple way of living is followed by the Ordnung. The Ordnung is defined as the separation of the rest of the world, hard work, women’s loyalty to their husbands, plain dress, and refusal to buy any form of insurance. The Amish church began with Schism in Switzerland within a group of Swizz and Alsatian Anabaptist in 1693. Jackob Ammann led the church and followers became known as Amish. They believe in one God eternally: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
They believe salvation is by grace through faith in Christ, a free gift from God on those who repent and believe. Amish believe their bodies are a temple of God and it is a gift to do God’s work. It is important to them to take good care of their bodies to be able to work and provide for their families. Amish believe in home remedies and self medicating.
Modern day medicine is acceptable, but Amish believe that God alone heals all.
Amish do not practice birth control, no prenatal visits are done, and they rarely take precautions to diseases; like immunizations. Amish pay for any medical care cost out of pocket and it is a community decision. If a procedure is too costly, the community may decide the money could be spent somewhere else and not follow through with the procedure. It is common for Amish to reject great medical measures to save one’s life, this may interfere with God’s will.
‘Bear one another’s burdens’ (Galatians 6:2) represents their belief of taking care of the sick, weak, and elderly in the Amish community. It is not uncommon for elderly to live with one of their children’s families. Family relationships are highly valued so they would not think twice about letting their mother or father live in their home with them.
As a population, they use less tobacco, less alcohol, and more vitamins and minerals. They do not have dietary restrictions, but drinking alcohol is highly discouraged. They do not have a preferred caregiver, but Amish women may not make eye contact with the caregiver, and the husband may do all the talking. When Amish show up to the ER, they generally are severely sick, in a great deal of pain, and their medical diagnosis may be in an advanced stage. Facial expression may be minimal due to this shows a sign of complaining against God’s will. Common diseases found in the Amish community are: Type 2 diabetes, Glutaric aciduria, Heart disease, Bipolar disorder, Alzheimer’s disease, Polio, Rubella, Tetanus, and women have a greater risk of developing osteoporosis due to multiple child births.
Babies are a gift from God and each one is celebrated in the Amish community. Mothers labor at home and use no drugs for pain. They have a midwife to help them through the process. The mothers often continue doing daily chores until they can not bear it any longer. It is common for families to have 10-15 children, due to not practicing birth control. Amish men tend to outlive their wives and this is linked to the repeated births the women have. When it comes to death and dying, Amish prefer to die at home. They are buried in an Amish cemetery in a hand dug grave.
A wagon takes the casket to the cemetery and four close family members or friends are chosen to be pallbearers. Amish work hard in the fields and gardens to grow enough food to provide for their large families. They believe God wants them to work closely with nature, so growing their food and raising animals such as cows, pigs, and chickens are important. Typical meals include: cornmeal mush, eggs, fruit, vegetables, meat, potatoes, gravy, and bread is included with each meal. Conclusion The Amish practice a simple way of living, keeping God, family, and hard work the center of their lives. They practice self medicating with home remedies, but modern day medicine is allowed.
Although immunizations are legal for them to receive, many of them do not receive them. Low immunization rate is linked to some of the diseases that is found in the Amish Population. Family is highly valued, and with multiple people living in tight headquarters, diseases can spread quickly. Amish come into the hospital as a last resort, so they may come in with very serious conditions. It is important to get a thorough assessment to help them get back on their feet.
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