Concept: Mental Health Indicators for Children
Last Updated: 2018-03-13
Mental Health Indicators
1. Mental DisordersConsiderations in Defining Mental Health Indicators
The following list identifies the different categories and components of the mental disorders used in this research:
- Externalizing disorders include at least one of the three following disorders: ADHD, conduct disorder or substance use disorders. See the Externalizing Disorders glossary term for more detailed information.
- Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a neurobehavioural developmental disorder that is characterized by a persistent pattern of impulsiveness, hyperactivity and absence of attention in children. See the Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) concept for more detailed information.
- Conduct disorder is characterized by a repetitive and persistent pattern of dissocial, aggressive or defiant behaviour, which is enduring and more severe than ordinary childish mischief or adolescent rebelliousness. See the Conduct Disorder concept for more detailed information.
- Substance use disorders are characterized by the excess use of and reliance on a drug, alcohol or other chemical that leads to severe negative effects on the user’s health and well-being or the welfare of others. See the Substance Use Disorders / Substance Abuse - Measuring Prevalence concept for more detailed information.
- Mood and anxiety disorders consist of a broad group of mental disorders including depressive (depressed mood and lack of interest in activities), bipolar (elevated mood and increased energy), and anxiety disorders (excessive fear, anxiety or worry and often avoidance). See the Mood and Anxiety - Measuring Prevalence concept for more detailed information.
- Psychotic disorders are a broad group of disorders characterized by extreme impairment of the ability to think clearly, respond emotionally, communicate effectively, understand reality and behave appropriately. Included in this group is schizophrenia, delusional and psychotic disorders. See the Psychotic Disorders - Measuring Prevalence concept for more detailed information.
- Schizophrenia is characterized by difficulty in distinguishing between real and unreal experiences (delusions and hallucinations), thinking logically, having normal emotional responses to others and behaving appropriately. See the Schizophrenia - Measuring Prevalence concept for more detailed information.
- Any mental disorder consists of having at least one of the following disorders examined in this report: externalizing disorders (ADHD, conduct disorder, or substance use disorders), mood and anxiety disorders, and psychotic disorders (including schizophrenia). See the Mental Disorder / Mental Health Disorder / Mental Health Illness Classification concept for more detailed information.2. Suicidal Behaviours
Two indicators are used to investigate suicidal behaviours:
- Suicide is defined as self-inflicted injury or poisoning as the primary cause of death.
- Attempted suicide is defined as being hospitalized for accidental poisoning followed by a consult to psychiatry or for self-inflicted injury.
See the Suicide and Attempted Suicide (Intentional Self Inflicted Injury) concept for more detailed information.3. Developmental Disorders
Children with developmental disorders have greater difficulty than most children with intellectual and adaptive functioning, and having had these difficulties from a very early age. This includes mental retardation, chromosomal anomalies, Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) and Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). ASD is also examined separately.
See the Intellectual Disability (ID) (Mental Retardation) / Developmental Disability (DD) / Developmental Disorders concept for more detailed information.
- Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) have difficulty with social communication and interaction as well as restricted and repetitive patterns of behaviour, interests or activities.
See the Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) - Measuring Treatment Prevalence concept for more detailed information.4. No Disorders
No disorders is defined as not having any of the mental disorders, suicidal behaviours and developmental disorders that are defined above.