World health Organisation

Mental health: a state of well-being

Updated August 2014

Mental health is defined as a state of well-being in which every individual realizes his or her own potential, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to her or his community.

A group of smiling young women, Lesotho

WHO/P. Virot

The positive dimension of mental health is stressed in WHO’s definition of health as contained in its constitution: “Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”

: From the World Health Organisation