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Mental Health Definition for Families

What is Mental Health?

Definitions of mental health and related concerns vary from person to person, as many different factors, such as culture, affect a personal definition.

There are some main points that are common to most definitions of mental health or mental wellness, such as:

  • Being able to do daily tasks without much difficulty. That can mean going to school or work, or being part of a family, team or group without feeling overwhelmed and having a hard time coping.

  • Being able to deal with day-to-day stresses, such as tests at school, chores at home or tasks at a job.

  • Having some meaningful and trusting relationships with friends and family or people at school and/or work.

  • Feeling a degree of satisfaction with life – generally feeling okay – and believing that challenges that do occur are not too difficult to handle.

 

Concerns with Mental Health

It can be difficult to know whether your child’s or teen’s emotions or behaviours are a normal part of growing up or if they are something to be concerned about. Understanding typical child and teen development can help you determine this – check out the Facts for Families page for more information.

If you’re concerned about your child’s or teen’s mental health, it’s good to know that generally most mental health concerns are short-lived and typically don’t affect all areas of their life. With the right support and treatment, kids and teens can recover from mental health concerns.

To make sure potential mental health concerns don’t become overwhelming, it’s important to get help early. Ask your doctor if you have concerns. If you don’t have a doctor, talk to a trusted resource – another primary health provider or a teacher or school counsellor. You can also go to the Getting Help section of this website and follow the links to find help in your area.