Just like physical health, our mental health changes. We go
through periods when we don’t feel as mentally well.
Ask any adult in your life, and they’ll be able to tell you
about times when their mental health has fluctuated – it could be because of
the loss of a loved one, a challenge at school or work, or various other life
circumstances that may feel out of our control.
We all have mental health
Everyone has mental health. It might be helpful to think
about mental health as a range or continuum. On one end is the optimal,
on-top-of-the-world mental health. On the other is poor mental health.
Not everyone has a mental illness. Mental illness, like
mental health can fluctuate. On one end of the continuum is no diagnosable
mental illness (minimal or no symptoms). On the other end is severe mental
When the mental health and mental illness continuums are put
together, they create a “dual continuum” (see below).
It’s also helpful to know that people who have diagnosed
mental illnesses can still feel mentally well. And similarly, people who don’t
have a diagnosed mental illness can have low mental health and need help.
That’s why getting treatment and support is essential.
We like this video from CAMH that explains how mental health works. You might find it helpful.