Skip to main content Skip to Navigation Skip to Footer
page banner image

Mental Health

If you are experiencing an emergency, call 911, or go to your local Emergency department.

What is mental health?

Everyone has mental health and your mental health is just as important as your physical health.

Mental health is a state of well-being which is necessary for living a healthy life and is important in overall health. Mental health is a balance of the mental, physical, spiritual, social, economic and emotional aspects of life that gives everyone—even the most vulnerable or mentally ill—an opportunity to live as a whole and healthy individual.

Mental health and mental illness are not the same. Many believe that mental health and mental illness are at opposite extremes. However, these are separate but interconnected concepts. We should consider them as two distinct continuums. The mental health continuum model illustrates that a person without a mental illness is not necessarily in good mental health, and vice versa. It’s also important to understand that everyone lies somewhere along the mental health continuum.

Why is mental health so important?

Mental health is an essential part of overall health and well-being.

Mental health affects a person’s coping skills, self-esteem and resiliency. These are key attributes that contribute to one’s ability to handle difficulties in life, move forward in a positive way after experiencing an undesirable situation, as well as fosters a sense of confidence and self-worth. It is also helpful in creating healthy relationships with those around you, interacting within your community as well as understanding and voicing your needs and wants.

Not only does having positive mental health improve one’s emotional strength, it also has the potential to improve one’s physical health and the outcomes of both physical and mental illnesses.

Improve your mental health with the Five Ways to Well-being

There are a many elements that influence a person’s level of personal well-being, and the things we do and the way we think can have the greatest impact. To help improve or support your mental health, try including the Five Ways of Well-being into your daily life. The Five Ways to Well-Being is a set of five simple, free, and achievable actions which can improve well-being in everyday life. 

Five Ways to Well-being

How the 5 ways to wellbeing work together to contribute to good functioning

Connect: Talk and listen. Be there. Feel connected.
Feeling close to and valued by others is a basic human need that contributes to positive mental health and well-being. Feeling connected to those around you also acts as buffer against mental illness.

Take Notice: Appreciate the little things that give you joy.
Taking notice is to be present in the moment. Being mindful is associated with positive mental states, and heightens self-understanding. This allows you to make positive choices which are consistent with your values, about your life priorities.

Be Active: Move your mood. Do what you can. Enjoy what you do.
Daily physical activity has vital benefits to your physical health. Being active is also associated with lower risk of depression and anxiety as well as an increase in overall well-being and diminished negative thoughts.

Keep Learning: Embrace new experiences. See opportunities. Surprise yourself.
Learning has a positive impact on a person’s sense of well-being especially when the learning is linked with personal motivations and values.

Give: Your time. Your words. Your presence.
There is an association with a greater sense of self-worth, positive feelings, happiness and life satisfaction in those who actively participate in social and community life by helping, sharing and giving together.

Adapted from:
Five Ways to Well-being –Simple Steps to Improve Your Mental Well-being developed by the Southern Health and Social Care Trust, Northern Ireland 2013.
Five Ways to Well-being’ Foresight Report developed by the New Economics Foundation 2008.


Mental Health Supports and Additional Information

  • Wellness Together Canada: Mental Health and Substance Use Support provides a variety of mental health and substance use high-quality resources.
  • Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) is a nationwide organization that promotes mental health and supports people recovering from mental illness. 
    1-705-267-8100 or 877-693-4270
  • NAN Hope Nishnawbe Aski Mental Health and Addictions Support Access Program. Phone support available 24/7.
  • Kids Help Phone offers free, 24/7, confidential crisis support and counselling for children and teens. Call 1-800-668-6868 or text 686868.
  • Talk for Healing is a culturally grounded, fully confidential helpline for Indigenous women. Phone lines are open 24/7.
  • Timmins and District Hospital Crisis Line 24/7 crisis line.
    1-705-264-3003 or 888-340-3003
  • Regional Warm Line offers confidential peer support across northeastern Ontario for those experiencing mental health challenges and illness. Services are available from 6 p.m. to midnight.
    1-866-856-9276 (warm)
  • About Kids Health offers resources to parents on how to promote children’s mental health and well-being as well as information on mental health conditions.
  • Togetherall offers free online mental health and well-being support services
  • Bounce Back is a free skill-building program for those 15 years and older to assist with managing symptoms of depression and anxiety.
  • ConnexOntario provides free and confidential health information by telephone, online chat, or email, for people living in Ontario who are experiencing problems with alcohol and drugs, mental illness or gambling. Services are available 24/7.
  • Good 2 Talk offers support to post-secondary students who have concerns that impact their mental health and well-being.
  • Hope for Wellness Helpline offers immediate mental health counselling and crisis intervention to all Indigenous peoples across Canada. Services are available 24/7 in English, French, Cree, Ojibway or Inuktitut. Call 1-855-242-3310 or chat online.
  • Employee Assistance Program provides employees and their families with access to accredited professionals to deal with life’s challenges. Ask your employer if they offer this type of program. 
  • NEDIC provides information, resources, referrals and support to people living in Canada who are affected by eating disorders through our toll-free helpline and live chat. Our outreach and education programming focuses on the awareness and prevention of eating disorders and is available online across Canada.
  • Sheena’s Place offers group-based support to people aged 17+ affected by an eating disorder or disordered eating. They have professionally-facilitated groups that are free of charge and participants do not require an eating disorder diagnosis or referral to register. They are committed to inspiring hope, reducing stigma, raising awareness and offering meaningful help and information at all stages of recovery.