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Understanding Mental Health

Good mental health is important to the wellbeing of adolescents, but what is it and why is it so important?

Mental health describes social and emotional wellbeing. You need good mental health in order to develop healthily, do the things you want to do, enjoy life, build strong relationships, adapt to change, and face life's challenges. Having good mental health can strengthen your ‘resilience’ to cope with difficult situations, not just during your youth as having good mental health during adolescence usually helps with your resilience and wellbeing for the rest of your life.

What is resilience?

Everyone faces difficult times or crises; this is a normal part of life. Resilience is the ability to adapt, "bounce back" and return to the same level of ability and activity as before the difficult period. If you are resilient, you can usually learn from difficult situations which helps you to grown emotionally and develop stronger ‘coping mechanisms’ and ‘life skills’.

‘Coping mechanisms’ and ‘life skills’ are the strategies we use when we are faced with difficult times and which help us manage painful or difficult feelings and overcome problems. Having healthy and positive coping mechanisms and life skills protects our mental health and helps us get the best out of life!

And the great news: all young people have the ability to strengthen their coping and life skills, resilience and mental health.

This page will give you lots of useful advice and tips on how to do this but first, let’s check your knowledge on mental health in our quiz below.

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