Complete Mental Health in South Australian Youth: Prevalence, Measurement, and Promotion

  • Anthony Venning
  • Jaklin Eliott
  • Lisa Kettler
  • Anne Wilson

Abstract

From a positive psychological perspective, a focus on developing an individual’s strengths rather than exclusively focusing on the symptoms of mental illness is a better way to promote a sustainable mental health. With this in mind, the Complete State Model of Mental Health (Keyes CLM, Lopez SJ, Towards a science of mental health. In: Snyder CR, Lopez JL (eds) Handbook of positive psychology. Oxford University Press, New York, pp 45–59, 2002) was adopted to examine both mental health and mental illness within Australian adolescents (13–17 years; N = 3,913). Normative scores for the Adult Hope Scale (Snyder et al, J Pers Soc Psychol, 60:570–585, 1991) were established, and results suggest that the prevalence of mental health has been overestimated, and that the presence of hopeful thinking is a better predictor of mental health than the absence of mental illness. This research helps to redirect the focus of mental health policy and practice in Australia by highlighting the importance of a positive focus in developing strategies to promote a sustainable mental health and reduce the burden of mental illness, both in adolescence and beyond.

Keywords

Mental Health Mental Illness Positive Emotion Goal Pursuit Sustainable State 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anthony Venning
    • 1
  • Jaklin Eliott
    • 2
  • Lisa Kettler
    • 1
  • Anne Wilson
    • 3
  1. 1.School of PsychologyThe University of AdelaideAdelaideAustralia
  2. 2.School of Population HealthThe University of AdelaideAdelaideAustralia
  3. 3.School of NursingThe University of AdelaideAdelaideAustralia

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