Mental Health

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1. Evaluate two different views on the nature of mental well-being and mental health: The term well-being can be used in different ways The New Economic Foundation describes well-being as how people experience their own lives. It is more than the absence of problems and illness, personal and social factors, and it is not just about happiness but enabling individuals and communities to do well in life and flourish.

In 2011, the Government defined mental health as “The art and science of promoting well-being and equality and preventing mental ill health through population based interventions to: reduce risk and promote protective, evidence based interventions to improve physical and mental well-being; and create flourishing, connected individuals, families and communities. ”The strategy defined well-being as: “A positive state of mind and body, feeling safe and able to cope, with a sense of connection with people, communities and the wider environment. ”

2. Explain the range of factors that may influence mental well-being and mental health problems across the life span, including:

Biological factors: Since various biological factors can affect mood and behaviour, psychiatrists often evaluate these before initiating further treatment. For example dysfunction of the thyroid gland may mimic a major depressive episode, or hypoglycaemia (low blood sugar) may mimic psychosis. Genetics, early environment, neurobiology, and psychological and social processes appear to be important contributory factors to the disorder schizophrenia.

What happens during pregnancy can have affect on how the baby’s brain develops. For example if a mother is taking drugs while she is pregnant, or if she gets a virus (like the flu). There have been reports that suggest vitamin and mineral deficiencies such as Vitamin D, zinc and certain fatty acids may also be related to our mental health. Social factors: things that are going on around us, and how we feel about them can have a big impact on our mental health, things such as where we live, our place of work, whether we have close family and friends and how and where can we relax.

Psychological factors: Your psychological state can influence your mental and emotional state, particularly if you are are coping with traumatic and abusive past or current experiences. Significant life events, like bereavement, divorce or if you have self-destructive thought patterns and perceptions, can impact on your mental health. For example post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety and in more extreme cases Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID – in the past referred to as multiple personality disorder) are all mental health conditions that are commonly found in people who have been abused.

3. Explain how the following types of risk factors and protective factors influence levels of resilience in individuals and groups in relation to mental well-being and mental health: Risk factors including inequalities, poor quality social relationships: When we face difficult times our support networks become very important – those who do not have close friends or families, or those who do not live near the people who support them may find it increasingly difficult to cope alone.

People coming from poor, uneducated backgrounds with the lack of knowledge and understanding of the importance of these relationships are suffer and increased disadvantage. Protective factors including socially valued roles, social support and contact: Whether you enjoy your work, or feel you are under too much pressure, are unable to find employment or hold down a job, can all put pressure on your mental well-being. The physical environment where we live can be very stressful, particularly when there are problems with neighbours, or if there are high crime rates and other such issues.

4. Explain the steps that an individual may take to promote their mental well-being and mental health: Numerous support groups are available for people affected by mental illness directly or indirectly, they can be found on the internet or through your GP If you experience problems concerning your mental health the first step of action should be to contact your GP, you can also find advice on government websites People known to have history of mental illness running in the family should take extra cautions, reduce other risk factors such as stress if possible Balanced, healthy life style is always a bonus.

It is important to find and practice the things that makes us happy and relaxed as an individual to be able to recharge and deal with the day to day life 5. Explain how to support an individual in promoting their mental well-being and mental health: To make the individual aware of the support system available out there To establish the individual`s problems and needs Therapies e. g. cognitive behavioural therapy etc. Reinforce the positive things and values

6. Evaluate a strategy for supporting an individual in promoting their mental well-being and mental health: Set up a care plan Constantly re-evaluate the care plan to make sure it is relevant and up-to-date and the goals have been achieved or person is making progress towards them Reward Maintain good work Work through set backs

7. Describe key aspects of a local, national or international strategy to promote mental well-being and mental health within a group or community: 2011, The Government Mental Health Strategy: There isn’t a government department which doesn’t have a role to play in achieving a transformation in support for people with mental health problems, whether it’s supporting veterans returning from Afghanistan, or ensuring that Police Officers are able to support people with a mental health problem who have been victim of a crime. It’s a wide ranging document as you’d expect, and sets out six clear objectives to be achieved over the coming years. By tackling stigma, improving public mental health, and providing high quality recovery focussed mental health services, you can start to see what is and should be possible.

Young people receiving early intervention, people with mental health problems having access to talking therapies wherever they are in the country, working environments supporting staff. The strategy makes it clear that mental health has a “parity of esteem” with physical health. The message to health and social care commissioners is clear-mental health services are no longer an easy cut — in fact, you should be spending more in increasing access to talking treatments.

It also begins to move mental health into the realm of public health, rightly recognising that local authorities have an important role to play in preventing poor mental health amongst the population, just as they have a role to play in preventing obesity, smoking and alcohol problems. 8. Evaluate a local, national or international strategy to promote mental well-being and mental health within a group or community: See question

7. 1. 1 Describe the main types of mental ill health according to the psychiatric (DSM/ICD) classification system: mood disorders, personality disorders, anxiety disorders, psychotic disorders, substance-related disorders, eating disorders, cognitive disorders

Mood disorders –bipolar, depression

Anxiety disorders – hydrophobia, claustrophobia

Psychotic disorders – schizophrenia

Substance related disorders – drug addiction

Eating disorders – anorexia, bulimia

Cognitive disorders – paranoia

1. 2 Explain the key strengths and limitations of the psychiatric classification system You are able to put a name to the illness and receive treatment. However each persons experience of mental distress is unique and it can be misinterpreted especially if there are cultural differences between doctor and patient. The classification system relies on symptoms and this is why this can be a little general.

1. 3 Explain two alternative frameworks for understanding mental distress Medical model, psychodynamic model, social model, behavioural model.

1. 4 Explain how mental ill health may be indicated through an individual’s emotions, thinking and behaviour.

The individual may start to lose touch with reality and you may also see emotions such as indifference and anger manifesting as the individual starts to get frustrated with treatments or misunderstanding. Due to thinking patterns being interrupted decisions maybe made which are not great. Emotional signs – crying (alot! ); facial expressions (sadness or despair) – sometimes emotions may be inappropriate (laughing in situations where this is not appropriate – at a funeral for example) and sometimes emotions may be up and down so that a person may be described as extremely moody.

Thinking – this is something people around the person will not see – the individual with disordered thinking may have difficulty concentrating or organising their thoughts. They may become paranoid and deluded or in denial about just how bad things are. Behaviour – the affected person may hoard clothing, newspapers and other items which can clutter their home to the point that they become a danger to themselves or others, they may wash their hands constantly and check repeatedly that they have locked doors or windows before going out; they may become forgetful and fail to turn up for appointments etc.

Performance Criteria Supporting Evidence Progress

2. 1 Explain how individuals experience discrimination due to misinformation, assumptions and stereotypes about mental ill health People with mental health problems say that the social stigma attached to mental ill health and the discrimination they experience can make their difficulties worse and make it harder to recover. Mental illness is common. It affects thousands of people in the UK, and their friends, families, work colleagues and society in general. One in four people will experience a mental health problem at some point in their lives.

Around one in ten children experience mental health problems. Depression affects around one in 12 of the whole population. Rates of self-harm in the UK are the highest in Europe at 400 per 100,000. 450 million people world-wide have a mental health problem. Most people who experience mental health problems recover fully, or are able to live with and manage them, especially if they get help early on. But even though so many people are affected, there is a strong social stigma attached to mental ill health, and people with mental health problems can experience discrimination in all aspects of their lives.

Many people’s problems are made worse by the stigma and discrimination they experience – from society, but also from families, friends and employers. Nearly nine out of ten people with mental health problems say that stigma and discrimination have a negative effect on their lives. We know that people with mental health problems are amongst the least likely of any group with a long-term health condition or disability to: find work be in a steady, long-term relationship live in decent housing be socially included in mainstream society.

This is because society in general has stereotyped views about mental illness and how it affects people. Many people believe that people with mental ill health are violent and dangerous, when in fact they are more at risk of being attacked or harming themselves than harming other people. Stigma and discrimination can also worsen someone’s mental health problems, and delay or impede their getting help and treatment, and their recovery. Social isolation, poor housing, unemployment and poverty are all linked to mental ill health.

So stigma and discrimination can trap people in a cycle of illness. The situation is exacerbated by the media. Media reports often link mental illness with violence, or portray people with mental health problems as dangerous, criminal, evil, or very disabled and unable to live normal, fulfilled lives. This is far from the case. Research shows that the best way to challenge these stereotypes is through firsthand contact with people with experience of mental health problems. A number of national and local campaigns are trying to change public attitudes to mental illness.

These include the national voluntary sector campaign Time to Change. The Equality Act 2010 makes it illegal to discriminate directly or indirectly against people with mental health problems in public services and functions, access to premises, work, education, associations and transport.

None 2. 2a Explain how mental ill health may have an impact on the individual including:  psychological and emotional

None 2. 2b practical and financial

None 2. 2c the impact of using services

None 2. 2d social exclusion

None 2. 2e positive impacts See above but also.

Mental ill health may mean a loss of a job and in so doing they are excluded and may have to move to areas of depravation where the services are not as good as in other areas. A client can have a positive impact in the sense that they can develop a new social network away from the risks which caused mental health.

None 2. 3a Explain how mental ill health may have an impact on those in the individual’s familial, social or work network including: • psychological and emotional – the person suffering from mental health problems may not have emotional support as people may not understand or sympathise with him or his family.

None 2. 3b practical and financial – it is difficult to get work when suffering from mental health and this may cause problems with money/financial.

None 2. 3c the impact of using services – doctors or nurses maynot fully understand mental sufferin and services may not beNone 2. 3d• social exclusion – the stigma in some communities eg African can mean others don’t keep in touch in case they catch mental illness.

None 2.3e positive impacts – the family become a lot more sympathetic and there may be help finally availablee Mental health also affects families and there is financial instability .

Some patients lose homes and the family has to move he burden of caring for a mentally ill individual often falls on the patient’s immediate family or relatives. Families and caregivers of individuals with psychological disorders are often unable to work at full capacity due to the demands of caring for a mentally ill individual, leading to decreased economic output and a reduction in household income.

Loss of income and the financial costs of caring for a mentally ill person put these households at an increased risk of poverty. Family members may also experience significant and chronic stress due to the emotional and physical challenges of caring for a mentally ill family members. Although the experience of caring for mentally ill relatives varies among families and cultures, a 1999 review article reported that family caregivers’ largest challenges were providing assistance with daily activities (e. g. providing transportation, offering financial assistance, helping with housework, cleaning, and money management) and stress associated with care (e. g. concerns about possible violence, embarrassing behaviors, and intra-family conflict).

2. 4 Explain the benefits of early intervention in promoting an individual’s mental health and wellbeingNone This can bring about quick recovery so its important to be able to identify mental illness early.


  • World Health Organization. Department of Mental Health, and Substance Abuse. Mental health atlas 2005. World Health Organization, 2005.
  • Abuse, Substance. “Mental Health Services.” Administration Office of Applied Studies. Preliminary results from the (1996).
  • Jahoda, Marie. “Current concepts of positive mental health.” (1958).
  • World Health Organization. The World Health Report 2001: Mental health: new understanding, new hope. World Health Organization, 2001.
  • Warr, Peter. Work, unemployment, and mental health. Oxford University Press, 1987.

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