What is mental health and why is it so important?

Welcome to “A Virtual Q&A with Shoppers Drug Mart Pharmacists”! Join our pharmacists as they answer your questions on various health and medication topics.

What is mental health and why is it so important?

If we were to define mental health, we would say it’s our psychological, emotional, and social wellbeing. It affects how we feel, how we act, how we relate to others, how we make decisions, and how we handle stressful situations. Mental health is a very important subject for all ages, so why is it an issue? It is an issue because mental illness is a growing global issue around the world and Canada is affected. So, we can say that there is 1 in every 5 Canadians who will experience a mental illness and or an addiction problem in any given year. We can say also almost 500,000 Canadians cannot attend work in any given week and any given year because of mental illnesses. That leads to loss of life quality, loss of productivity, loss of wages, not to mention the burden on the healthcare system. So, who is affected by mental health illnesses? Everybody - everybody is liable, everybody is affected, all ages, all educational levels, all social levels, all cultures, all genders. However, we see that it tends to affect younger populations and females more. Now that we said that, we also have to acknowledge that some people who would have chronic illness such as diabetes, chronic pain, people with cancer, people with cardiovascular disease, might develop mental illnesses. It is important to discuss mental health and mental illnesses because there is a stigma, the stigma is still there. So, there are many Canadians that are still concerned about the stigma or the perception of mental illnesses in their workplace and in their social settings that this will prevent them from seeking the appropriate resources to be able to get the help that they need. Because of that, we think that there has to be an action. We need to make mental health resources more available to everybody, especially to those who cannot afford it or with a lower income.

Whether you have questions about your prescription medications, over-the-counter products, immunizations, or other health concerns, our pharmacists are here to help.

The information provided is for personal use, reference and education only and is not intended to be a substitute for a physician’s advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult your healthcare professional for specific information on personal health matters.

This information included in this recording is correct as of November 10th, 2020.