Essay Mental Health

Canadian Mental Health Association

The Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) is a non-profit organization that has been providing services to persons with mental health issues since 1918. The CMHA offers information on understanding your mental health and information on mental illness.

Government of Canada: Mental Health and Wellness

Information from the Government of Canada about mental illness, its risk factors, symptoms, treatment and suicide prevention.

Guarding Minds at Work (GM@W)

A set of free tools (surveys, automated scorecards, audit forms, evidence-based recommendations and evaluation methods) that can be used to assess and address the 13 psychosocial risk factors (PSRs) in your workplace.

CSA Standard “Z1003-13 - Psychological health and safety in the workplace - Prevention, promotion, and guidance to staged implementation”

CAN/CSA-Z1003-13 (BNQ 9700-803/2013) is a voluntary standard intended to provide systematic guidelines for Canadian employers that will help enable them to develop and continuously improve psychologically safe and healthy work environments for their employees. The standard is currently available for free from the CSA website.

Workplace Mental Health Promotion, A How-To Guide

Developed in partnership with The Health Communication Unit at the University of Toronto, and the Canadian Mental Health Association, Ontario. Part of a series of resources on workplace health promotion that includes Introduction to Comprehensive Workplace Health Promotion, Influencing the Organizational Environment to Create Healthy Workplaces and Evaluating Comprehensive Workplace Health Promotion.

(*We have mentioned these organizations as a means of providing a potentially useful referral. You should contact the organization(s) directly for more information about their services. Please note that mention of these organizations does not represent a recommendation or endorsement by CCOHS of these organizations over others of which you may be aware.)

Mental Health

Introduction

Mental health refers to the psychological and the emotional well-being of an individual. A mentally healthy person is one that is properly adjusted to the emotional and behavioural requirements of the necessary stresses and conflicts associated with daily living. In other words for a person to be deemed mentally healthy, he or she must be ‘sound’ in the cognitive and affective aspects of his mental state. It is also seen as the absence of any sort of mental disorder. A mentally healthy person operates at an acceptable level of behavioural and emotional adjustment in his activities and interactions. Some of the characteristics of a mentally healthy person is zest for life and a balanced approach to the various activities and areas of operation that constitute daily living. The World Health Organisation (W.H.O) has a standard definition for mental health which incorporates all of these aforementioned qualities. It must be mentioned, however, that there are various definitions of mental health and their precise statements are affected by cultural differences and competing professional theories about mental health.

Mental health vs Mental Disorders

The World Health Organisation’s report indicates that close to 50 percent of the total population of the world are victims of one form of mental disorder or the other. This is consequent upon the view of mental health as an unstable continuum rather than an absolute level of psychological wellness. Definitions of mental health are at best subjective. Some definitions are constructed in terms of happiness, others around the ability to function socially and contribute effectively to society. However, most definitions centre around three main things: the ability to live ‘fully’ and creatively, be emotionally and properly adjusted, and to be flexible in handling life’s inevitable challenges. When these three key aspects were used to analyse the global population, it was realized that almost half of the population suffered from one form of mental disorder or the other. There are numerous forms of mental disorders that devastates the world’s population. Mental disorders are placed in various classes such as anxiety disorders, depression, mood disorders, psychotic disorders personality disorders and bipolar disorder. Anxiety disorder is very common and it includes panic disorder, phobias and post-traumatic stress disorder.

Factors that could affect an Individual’s Mental Health

There are several factors that may cause a person to develop a mental disorder. One of these is genetic inheritance and family history. Life experiences such as stress or trauma as well as substance abuse could also destabilise an individual’s mental health.

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