10th-October-World-Mental-Health-Day-PictureIt’s not only the mad people who wander the streets dressed in rags, talking to themselves, that have mental health issues. People will be surprised to learn that a lot of seemingly healthy and sane people have mental health issues. (source: gistus.com)

mental-health-poster-2Concern is growing in our society about the number of children and youth who are experiencing mental health problems. Most estimates suggest that 15 to 20 per cent of children and youth struggle with a mental health problem. This could mean that in a classroom of thirty students, five or six students may be experiencing a mental health problem, and three or four of them may have a problem that significantly interferes with their daily life. Every day, educators see students who are struggling – students who engage in challenging behaviour and act out, or who are withdrawn and anxious. Such behaviour may signal problems that can interfere with students’ achievement at school and their social functioning. Children and youth can display a range of behavioural and emotional problems that may have a negative impact on their well-being and interfere with their functioning at school, at home, in the community, and in social settings. Child and youth mental health problems can be classified into two broad categories: internalizing problems, which include symptoms like withdrawal, anxiety, fearfulness, and depressed moods; and externalizing problems, which are characterized by such behaviours as aggression, defiance, rule-breaking, and destructive behavior.

Causes of Problems

-multiple genetic and environmental factors, interacting over time

-problems in the brain’s early development, genetic influences, chemical imbalances, and brain trauma

-cognitive and psychological disturbances, prenatal and postnatal challenges, severe life stress, problematic relations with peers, conflicts within the family, alcohol and drug use, and parent and family characteristics such as a family history of mental illness

may all contribute to problems. (SOURCE: edu.gov.on.ca)

depression-posterConversation Questions

Do you know anyone who has experienced any mental health issues?
Have you ever experienced mental health issues?
Have you ever supported someone through a mental health issue?
Would you support someone through a mental health issue?
Do you feel that there is enough support systems in place to help people suffering with a mental health issues?
Have you or anyone you know experienced or witnessed stigma surrounding mental health?


(Mindmap, videos and questions -SOURCE: hannahcwmediaproduction.wordpress.com)

Mental Health Problems among Students


Anxiety Problems

Many children and adolescents typically experience worries and fears from time to time, and these worries and fears can change as young people progress through different developmental stages. For example, young children often become distressed when separated from loved ones, and adolescents worry at times about “fitting in” with peers as they explore their identity during the stressful adolescent years. The school setting itself can trigger anxiety for many students. Many common situations, such as test-taking, giving a speech, trying out for a team, interacting with other students, or participating in class, can make students feel nervous.


View more

Mood Problems: Depression
and Bipolar Disorder


black-dog1In general, “depression” is the term we use to describe a feeling of sadness,
irritability, or loss of interest in activities that the person has typically enjoyed.
Most children and youth will, from time to time, experience feelings of sadness
as they move through life. These feelings may be related to temporary setbacks,
such as receiving a bad mark, having a disagreement with friends, or not making
a sports team. Feelings of this type usually do not last long and, as children and
youth mature, they learn a range of coping strategies to deal with and adapt
to such difficulties. However, when sadness, irritability, or lack of interest are
associated with more long-lasting issues, such as sustained conflict with peers,
lack of engagement in activities, ongoing academic struggles, or difficulties at
home, there may be a need for supports or intervention. Read more


Bipolar disorder is a major mental illness that is associated with lifelong consequences
for the individual. In adults, bipolar disorder may be characterized
by episodes of mania or hypomania (e.g., elation, grandiose thoughts, racing
thoughts) alternating with episodes of depression. Read more

Other Disorders


Schizophrenia is a mental disorder characterized by abnormal social behavior and failure to understand what is real. Common symptoms include false beliefs, unclear or confused thinking, hearing voices that others do not hear, reduced social engagement and emotional expression, and a lack of motivation. Read more

Bulimia nervosa

Bulimia nervosa, also known as simply bulimia, is an eating disorder characterized by binge eating. Binge eating refers to eating a large amount of food in a short amount of time. Read more

anorexia_nervosa_2_by_avitalikAnorexia nervosa

Anorexia nervosa, often referred to simply as anorexia, is an eating disorder characterized by low weight, fear of gaining weight, and a strong desire to be thin, resulting in food restriction. Read more

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

Obsessive–compulsive disorder (OCD) is a mental disorder where people feel the need to check things repeatedly, perform certain routines repeatedly. Read more

Signs of Mental Health problems

-Lack of concentration


-Criticising often

-Eating incessantly

-Substance abuse

-Appearance issues



-Childishness Read more  

Mental health stigma

What is stigma?

Why do we stigmatize mental illness?

How does stigma affect people’s lives?

Mental health stigma can be divided into two distinct types: social stigma is characterized by prejudicial attitudes and discriminating behaviour directed towards individuals with mental health problems as a result of the psychiatric label they have been given. In contrast, perceived stigma or self-stigma is the internalizing by the mental health sufferer of their perceptions of discrimination. Read more

A collection of TED Talks (and more) on the topic of mental health.