Social determinants of mental health


Good mental health is integral to human health and well being. A person’s mental health and many common mental disorders are shaped by various social, economic, and physical environments operating at different stages of life. Risk factors for many common mental disorders are heavily associated with social inequalities, whereby the greater the inequality the higher the inequality in risk.

It is of major importance that action is taken to improve the conditions of everyday life, beginning before birth and progressing into early childhood, older childhood and adolescence, during family building and working ages, and through to older age. Action throughout these life stages would provide opportunities for both improving population mental health, and for reducing risk of those mental disorders that are associated with social inequalities.

You may also access this publication through the WHO's website.

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This publication, “Social determinants of mental health", will describe population-based strategies that can be implemented through health and non-health sectors to reduce the impact of social determinants on mental ill-health and to promote mental health.

This publication will be available in the first quarter of 2014. You may access its executive summary here.

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