What is Mental Health & Wellness?
Mental health, emotional or behavioral issues can interfere with your ability to reach your potential.
Morgan Health Centers offers a wide range of services to support our clients’ health and well-being.
“Mental health” and “mental illness” are increasingly being used as if they mean the same thing, however they do not. Everyone has mental health, just like everyone has health. In the course of a lifetime, not all people will experience a mental disorder or illness, but everyone will struggle or have a challenge with their mental wellness (i.e., their mental health) just like we all have challenges with our physical wellness from time to time.
Similar to someone who feels unwell but may not have a serious illness, people may have poor mental health without a mental illness. We all have days where we feel a bit down, or stressed out, or overwhelmed by something that’s happening in our lives. An important part of good mental health is the ability to look at concerns and issues realistically. Good mental health isn’t about feeling happy and confident 100% of time and ignoring any problems. It’s about living and coping well despite your concerns and issues.
Professionals who provide guidance, support, and treatment for mental, emotional, and behavioral disorders or obstacles are generally classified under four terms: social workers, counselors, therapists, and psychologists. Some of these terms are used interchangeably in conversation, though they are not technically the same. We offer confidential mental health and psychiatric services including counseling, therapy, groups, psychological evaluations and more.
Types of Mental Health Crises
Mental health crises are experienced by people of all ages, cultures, and socioeconomic conditions, and may or may not be related to a specific mental disorder or illness. A mental health crisis begins with an dramatic event or change in a person’s life that intensifies into feelings of emotional overwhelm. The role of the mental health clinician is to assess if the person is experiencing a situational mental health crisis or a mental health crisis affected by a mental disorder or illness.
Situational mental health crisis is not a diagnostic term. It is a phrase give to a person who’s comping mechanisms are affected due to their circumstances – in the absence of a mental health illness. Situational mental health crises stem from a struggle to come to terms with dramatic life events or changes. Crises may be common and the person will overcome the crisis on their own. An extreme mental health crisis requires intervention and support from the person’s family, friends and/or therapist. Recovery is possible once an individual comes to terms with a new situation.
Mental disorders or mental illnesses are conditions that affect your thinking, feeling, mood, and behavior, they affect that way you think, feel, behave, or interact with others. Mental disorders may be occasional or long-lasting (chronic) and can affect your ability to relate to others and function each day. A mental health crisis may be affected by a mental disorder. The mental disorder or illness may MAKEWORSE the mental health crises and
Some key differences between situational and clinical crisis will determine the type of treatment the person needs and the severity of the condition. No type of crisis is more “real” than another. Both can present significant challenges and threats to mental health and wellness. However, knowing which type of crisis is at the root of correct treatment and recovery.
Addressing major life changes, such as divorce or seeking help in managing a mental health condition, like depression? Do you have a specific goal or issue that you would like to work on? Looking for group therapy with your family, spouse, or peers; individual therapy to address obstacles in your life; or clinical therapy to address a mental disorder through medication? Whatever the reason, it takes courage to attend therapy and dedication to see it through. Getting help can promote self-actualization, empower self-growth, improve relationships and reduce emotional suffering.
Mental crises develop in four phases:
Initial threat. People are faced with a problem or conflict. In an effort to lower their anxiety, they employ various defense mechanisms, such as compensation (using extra effort), rationalization (reasoning), and denial. If the problem is resolved, the threat disappears, and there is no crisis.
Continuing threat becomes a crisis. If the problem persists, people in crisis become increasingly distraught and their anxiety grows to serious levels. In crisis now, they become disorganized and have difficulty thinking, sleeping and functioning. They initiate trial-and-error efforts to solve the problem and restore emotional equilibrium.
Crisis intensifies to panic. When trial-and-error attempts fail, their anxiety intensifies to severe and panic levels and the person is immobilized with fear. Some people in crisis redefine the problem, attack it from a new
angle, and try again to find a solution.
Serious disorganization and assault. If the problem is not resolved and new coping skills are ineffective, anxiety may overwhelm the person and lead to serious disorganization, depression, confusion, violence against others,
or suicidal behavior. Adjustment disorder with depressed mood is another name for this emotional state.
» More about the Four Mental Health Crisis Phases
● Psychological/psychiatric assessment and diagnosis
● Medication consultations
● Medication follow-up and support
● Medication therapy
● Short-term counselling groups (this item is listed under both categories)
● Psychological short-term therapy
● Faculty consultations
● Peer support
● On-line self help modules
● Short-term counselling groups (this item is listed under both categories)
● Psycho-educational skill building groups
● Supportive counselling, sub-clinical issues
● Awareness and stigma campaigns, training to empathize/identify issues
● Debriefing and support for staff and students witnessing/experiencing trauma
● Program collaboration, community/preventative
● Bridge counselling – facilitating transitions
● Collaborative referrals and consultations
● Short-term care, including individual counselling
● Individual appointments
● Intake, triage, and early intervention
● Crisis management
● Emergency appointments
Will be of benefit to the student’s overall functioning, complementing their care within a learning environment.
Non-clinical services include:
Screening, evaluation of best course of action
Clinical assessment, formal diagnosis
Clinical Services include:
Long-term or high intensity care
Crisis intervention and support, including individual or group
Situational Mental Health Crises
Medical evidence shows a genuine reciprocal connection between the mind and body. Our goal is to utilize this connection to help you be your personal and professional best.
The goal of counseling is to use talk therapy to help clients work through the issues that affect them in negative ways. Counselors listen, provide feedback, and counsel. They do not provide answers; they help you find answers for yourself.
Common Stressors precipitating a common mental health crisis include:
- Losses – Bereavement, separation, divorce, financial losses, loss of status, reduced physical capacity.
- Life Changes – New job, moving house, entering university, marriage retirement, caring for another, developmental stage (eg. adolescence).
- Problems with – Relationships including divorce, accommodation, work, finances, legal system.
Normal reactions in a common mental health crisis:
- Dizzy/shortness of breath
- Scattered/erratic thought process
- Abdominal pain
Many people experiencing a extreme mental health crisis achieve strength and recovery through participating in individual or group treatment. There are many different treatment options available. There is no treatment that works for everyone – individuals can chose the treatment, or combination of treatments, that works best.
- Loss of appetite
- Sleeping Issues
- Substance Use
» More About Situational Mental Health Crises
Mental Health Disorders & Illness
Just as it’s possible to have poor mental health but no mental illness, it’s entirely possible to have good mental health even with a diagnosis of a mental illness. That’s because mental illnesses (like other health problems) are often episodic, meaning there are times (‘episodes’) of ill health and times of better or good health. When we talk about mental health, we’re talking about our mental well-being: our emotions, our thoughts and feelings, our ability to solve problems and overcome difficulties, our social connections, and our understanding of the world around us. With the right supports and tools, anyone can live well—however they define well—and find meaning, contribute to their communities, and work towards their goals.
Mental disorders or mental illnesses are conditions that affect your thinking, feeling, mood, and behavior, they affect that way you think, feel, behave, or interact with others. Mental disorders may be occasional or long-lasting (chronic) and can affect your ability to relate to others and function each day.
There are many different mental illnesses, and they have different symptoms that impact peoples’ lives in different ways. Sometimes it’s difficult to find out which mental illness may be causing your symptoms. But taking the time and effort to get an accurate diagnosis will help determine the appropriate treatment. The more information you have, the more you will be prepared to work with your mental health professional in understanding what your symptoms may represent.
While not a comprehensive list of every mental disorder, the following list includes some of the major categories.
- Anxiety Disorders
- Bipolar and Related Disorders
- Depressive Disorders
- Disruptive / Impulse Control Disorders
- Dissociative Disorders
- Impulse Control
- Mood Disorders
- Neurodevelopmental Disorders
- Neurocognitive Disorders
- Obsessive-Compulsive Disorders
- Psychological Eating Disorders
- Schizophrenia Spectrum & Other Psychotic Disorders
- Psychological Sleep Disorders
- Somatic Symptom Disorders
- Stress-Related Disorders
- Substance-Related & Addictive Disorders
- Trauma & Stress Related Disorders
A psychological evaluation is a mental health assessment, where a professional, such as a family doctor, psychologist, or psychiatrist checks to see if you are experiencing a mental health problem. For psychologists, an assessment like this helps determine the exact nature and extent of a person’s mental illness.
Dr. Robin Wand, PsyD. offers the following psychological evaluations.
- Anxiety & Depression
- Cognitive Issues
- Mood/Personality Disorders