Mental health and wellbeing strategy: consultation

We want to hear your views on what a new mental health and wellbeing strategy for Scotland should look like. We have asked a series of questions, and your answers to these will help us write the final strategy.

Questions – Part 1


In this consultation, we talk about "mental health", "mental wellbeing", "mental health conditions" and "mental illness". We have explained below what we mean by each of those terms. We want to know if you think we have described these in the right way, or if we should make changes to how we are describing them.

"Mental Health"

Everyone has mental health. This ishow we think and feel about ourselves and the world around us, and can change at different stages of our lives. Our mental health is affected, both positively and negatively, by lots of factors, such as our own life circumstances, our environment, our relationships with others, and our past experiences, plus our genetic make-up. Being mentally healthy is about having good mental health, as well as addressing mental health problems. Having good mental health means we can realise our full potential, feel safe and secure, and thrive in everyday life as well as to cope with life's challenges.

1.1 Do you agree with this description of "mental health"? [Y/N]

1.2 If you answered no, what would you change about this description and why?

"Mental wellbeing"

Mental wellbeing affects, and is affected by, mental health. It includes subjective wellbeing (such as life satisfaction) and psychological wellbeing (such as our sense of purpose in life, our sense of belonging, and our positive relationships with others). We can look after our mental wellbeing in the same way as we do our mental health – and having good mental wellbeing can stop our mental health getting worse. The Royal College of Psychiatrists defines wellbeing 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'.

1.3 Do you agree with this description of "mental wellbeing"? [Y/N]

1.4 If you answered no, what would you change about this description and why?

"Mental health conditions" and "mental illness"

Mental health conditions are where the criteria has been met for a clinical diagnosis of mental illness. This means that a diagnosis of a mental illness has been given by a professional. Mental health conditions can greatly impact day to day life, and can be potentially enduring. These include depression, generalised anxiety disorder (GAD), panic disorder, phobias, social anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), as well as bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and other psychosis, among many more.

How mental illness affects someone can change from day to day. The professional treatment and support that each individual needs can change too.

Someone may have an acute mental health problem or mental health condition that has not yet been diagnosed, but they can still be unwell. Their diagnosis may also change over time.

1.5 Do you agree with this description of "mental health conditions" and "mental illness"? [Y/N]

1.6 If you answered no, what would you change about this description and why?



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