The World Health Organisation (2014) defines mental health as ‘a unified state of mental, physical and social well-being, where a person can achieve their potential, is able to effectively contribute to the community, and can handle the stresses of normal life’.  

Enjoying good mental health and wellbeing helps us to deal with the stresses of everyday life. However 1 in 4 people is affected by a mental health problem in any year. Finding out more about some of the mental health problems people might face could help you to feel more confident when trying to support someone.  

Mental Health Problems 

There is a variety of mental health problems that a person can experience. The Time to Talk website provides further details on the following issues:  


The World Health Organisation's definition of mental health moves beyond simply the absence of mental illness, but includes the presence of emotional, psychological and social wellbeing. People who enjoy high levels of wellbeing are described as flourishing. In this context, flourishing means that the person enjoys feelings of happiness, contentment and curiosity and is able to engage fully with what is going on around them. Flourishing also means functioning well in the world; the person experiences positive relationships, has some control over their life, and has a sense of purpose.

The Mental Capital and Wellbeing project identified the drivers to wellbeing, and the New Economics Foundation (NEF) named the Five Ways to Wellbeing to communicate these: Connect, Be Active, Take Notice, Keep Learning and Give. 

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