What Is Mental Health?
We all have mental health. Mental health is good when we can manage difficult or painful thoughts and feelings, and do things we care about or enjoy, and be kind to ourselves. Our mental health is caused by how we think, feel and behave AND it affects how we think, feel, and behave. Ways that mental health impacts on how we behave is in our coping behaviour, how we interact and form relationships with others, as well as our daily functioning.
Our mental health can vary and be dependent on a number of factors, which may include;
What is a Mental health problem?
At any point in our lives we will experience anxiety, low mood, or other mental health problem. Most people are able to overcome this and it does not impact on their ability to live their lives. If it does have an impact and is getting in the way of their functioning, then it has become a problem.
The vast majority of mental health problems are caused by ruminating about the past, worrying about the future and getting stuck inside judgements of ourselves and other people. A mental health problem can affect that way people think, feel, behave, and interact with others.
If this keeps getting worse and more areas of life become affected, then a mental health problem can become an illness, such as depression.
Mental illness typically has more of an impact across many areas of an individual’s life than episodes of poor mental health which may be situation specific or time limited.
Anyone of any age, sex, race, ethnicity, background, religion, ability, appearance, culture, caste, education, economic status, spirituality, sexual orientation can experience mental illness.
How to have good mental health and wellbeing.
It is important to practice the basics of wellbeing consistently. Young people may need help establishing routines that maintain wellbeing:
Psychological skills for maintaining good mental health
How adult caregivers can support a young person struggling with their mental health:
Ensure you have support for yourself; ask for help or let someone know if you are struggling either with your own emotional and mental health or if you are struggling with supporting a young person.
Role model that you are human too; normalise and validate that we all have thoughts and feelings and can experience difficulties and struggles with our emotional and mental health.
Share information; joined up working between adult caregivers (e.g., home and education) ensures consistency and containment for young people.
Be calm, consistent , clear and boundaried, as well as kind and compassionate.
Remember that your verbal and nonverbal communication and responses will have an impact on how a young person thinks, feels and behaves.
Work with a young person to help them better understand , express and communicate how they are thinking and feeling.
Coping / need support
Nature (type) of Difficulties
What To Do
Young Minds Parents Helpline: 08088025544
Family Lives Helpline: 08088002222
Need specialist intervention / crisis management
Now showing: Video 1 of 5
Video description: CARE (Coping And Resilience Education) skills - a 45 minute workshop for adults on understanding young people's emotions and how to support them with emotional resilience and mental health
Video description: Alfred & Shadow - A short story about emotions (education psychology health animation)
Video description: We All Have Mental Health
Video description: Guided Mindfulness: Passing Clouds - Dr Natalie Roberts
Video description: Guided Mindfulness: Leaves on a Stream