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The Difference Between Social-Emotional Mental Health and Mental Health - JIS Online

The Difference Between Social-Emotional Mental Health and Mental Health

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As school leaders continue to implement social-emotional learning (SEL) programs, everyone must understand what this type of curriculum is about and how it differs from student mental health. There is much confusion around the differences and similarities between these two subjects, and they are not necessarily mutually exclusive.

In a school setting, the term “social emotional mental health” refers to students’ ability to develop the skills needed to have positive social relationships, manage their emotions and make responsible choices. When children have strong social-emotional skills, they are better able to learn in the classroom and succeed academically. On the other hand, children with fewer skills are more likely to have problems in school and have poor self-esteem and low motivation.

Nurturing Well-Being: A Deep Dive into Social, Emotional, and Mental Health

The mental health of family members and caregivers also impacts children’s social-emotional development. Undetected and untreated depression in a mother or other caregiver can negatively affect the child’s development. Likewise, young children who witness domestic violence or other forms of abuse can have lasting negative effects on their social-emotional well-being.

Mental health can be treated in many ways, including through therapy and medication. But it’s also crucial that people have access to supportive networks and healthy activities like exercise, good nutrition, restful sleep, and spirituality. Research shows that social support is linked to lower levels of anxiety, depression and suicide. It can even help a person overcome serious symptoms such as delusions or self-injury, which are often a sign of severe mental illness.

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