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Wellness Indicators

The mental health continuum identifies a spectrum of health concerns, whether mental or physical, that may impact on person throughout their life.

The model goes from healthy adaptive coping (green), through mild and reversible distress or functional impairment (yellow), to more severe persistent injury or impairment (orange), to significant impairment (red).

Mental Health Continuum

  • Being well or unwell is NOT black and white.
  • The aim is for a person to be flourishing, healthy and performing at their best and NOT just having an absence of illness.
  • Mental health is not fixed. A person can move back and forth along their own personal continuum over time, in response to different stressors and experiences.
  • Personal knowledge and skills in promoting own wellbeing (self-care) will also influence their mental health at any point in time.
  • Experience says that symptoms can be observed commonly during normal life challenges. If identified and addressed early, symptoms are more likely to be temporary and are easier for a person to return to their normal health functioning.

Actions to take at each phase of the continuum

Adapted from: Royal Canadian Mounted Police Mental Health Strategy