Article

Mental Health Promotion

Vikki Vandiver and Nikki Hozack

in Public Health

ISBN: 9780199756797
Published online February 2011 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/obo/9780199756797-0113
Mental Health Promotion

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Increasingly, promoting mental health is seen as an integral part of public health. The promotion of mental health is anchored within the larger field of health promotion, yet it has a notable place alongside the prevention of mental disorders and the treatment and rehabilitation of people with mental illnesses and disabilities. Mental health is promoted through processes that enable people to function well and/or that remove barriers that impede them from having control over their own health and mental well-being. Mental health promotion can apply to the individual or to the whole population in the context of everyday life. Mental health promotion is about building on the existing strengths, assets, skills, resources, networks, social and community supports, and relationships that enhance our sense of competence and belonging. Mental health promotion is about providing the opportunity for people to experience personal mastery through activities that lead to increased self-esteem, quality of life, and social connectedness. As an activity, mental health promotion is often sociopolitical: reducing unemployment, improving housing and schooling, advocating for social justice by working to reduce stigma and discrimination. To be successful, mental health promotion efforts must identify mental health needs, set priorities, and influence and implement solutions, often at the community level. This article identifies a variety of resources that pertain to the definition of mental health promotion and the research, policies, programs, economics, and special populations that benefit from mental health promotion.

Article.  5392 words. 

Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology

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