- “Mental” refers to thoughts (thought content), feelings (emotions), and related brain functioning.
- Mental health varies on a continuum from “poor” to “good”. Good mental health is a state of psychological well-being. Good mental health generally enables people to function, realize their abilities, cope with the normal stresses of life, and contribute to their community.
- Mental disorder severity lies on a different continuum from mental health and varies from mild to severe (Keyes, 2010). A person can have good mental health even though they have a mental illness or a mental disorder. Conversely, but more commonly, a person can have poor mental health but still not meet the diagnostic criteria for any specific mental disorder as described in the DSM or the ICD.
- Mental health is influenced by a wide variety of determinants, not only potentially psychologically traumatic events and stressors.
For General Public
- Refers to a person’s thoughts and feelings.
- Mental health exists on a continuum between poor and good. In good mental health, a person knows their abilities, copes well with normal stress, works well, and contributes to their community.
- People with a diagnosis of a mental disorder can be coping well and still have good mental health.
- On the other hand, a person can have poor mental health without having a diagnosis of a mental disorder.
- Mental health is influenced by a wide variety of factors, not only potentially psychologically traumatic events and stressors.
Return to Index