Mental health

The relationship between physical and mental health adversely affects individuals’ quality of life as well as society as a whole. The World Health Organization (WHO) states that ‘health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity’ and further emphasizes that ‘there is no health without mental health’. The well recognised inextricable links between physical and mental health explain the increased risk of developing poor mental health on top of suffering from a physical disorder, or mental disorders leading to poor physical health. The scheme in Figure 1 illustrates as an example how at every stage of a physical illness, mental health may be affected.

Figure 1: A brief summary of the overlap between physical and mental health before, during and after treatment of a physical disorder.

The overview in Figure 1 includes a number of aspects that contribute to the interplay of mental and physical health:

We describe on the following pages in greater detail the diverse overlaps between oral and maxillofacial conditions and mental health as well as interventions and management of mental-health problems associated with oral and maxillofacial conditions.

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