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What is mental health?

What exactly is "mental health"? What are the differences between “mental health” and “mental illness”? There are many ways to understand mental health based on our experiences, families and cultures. It’s not just about illness. We all have a state of mental health all of the time. A public health approach to mental health helps improve the mental health of all children and families, not just those with diagnoses. Watch this video to learn about a public health approach to mental health and well-being. Use the discussion questions to start conversations with others.


Video Discussion Questions

Interested in leading others in conversations about mental health? Use these discussion guides to start a conversation about this video.

Mental health resources for professionals and students

Children's mental health case studies — These online, interactive tools encourage practitioners, instructors, graduate students, and community partners to collaborate together and explore how to respond effectively to mental health needs.

Children's mental health ereviews — Each online eReview issue summarizes research and gives practical ideas for use in community settings.

Annotated bibliographies — Find articles, books and other resources about mental health as it relates to stress, nutrition, poverty, sleep, and many other topics.

Reviewed in 2020

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