Social Determinants of Mental Health

  • Francisco Javier Carod-Artal


Determinants of mental health include not only personal attributes but also social, economic, cultural, political, environmental and other factors. Social determinants of mental health (SDMH) are those conditions in which people are born, grow, live, work and age that impact health and well-being, and the health systems that they can access, which are shaped by economic, social, environmental policies, and politics. Poverty, low educational level, gender discrimination, unhealthy lifestyle, violence, physical ill-health, unemployment, social exclusion and human rights violations are recognized factors associated with poor mental health. A multilevel framework that includes life-course approach across life stages, community- and country-level contexts have been proposed. Gender differences were found; mental disorders affect more deeply females compared to males at every level of household income. The delivery of an SDMH approach requires action across multiple sectors including education, health, welfare, transport and housing. Mental health is a business of all, and participation of government, social institutions, community and service providers are required.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Neurology DepartmentRaigmore HospitalInvernessUK
  2. 2.Health Science FacultyInternational University of Catalonia (UIC)BarcelonaSpain

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