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Mental health video series: OISE News hits the streets to test your mental health knowledge

Dr. Katreena Scott gives the facts in Mental Health Matters: How much do you know? 

By Lindsey Craig

May 25, 2017


OISE News hits the streets to test your mental health knowledge. Watch the playlist above as we reveal our video series and questions. (OISETube)

If a little boy seemed sad all the time and kept asking to leave class because he had a stomach ache, what would you do if you were his teacher?

Should you call his parents? Suggest he might be facing a mental health problem? Talk to him? Send him home?

Find out the answer to this question and more in the OISE News video series, Mental Health Matters: How much do you know?

Questions highlight misconceptions

Featuring OISE’s Dr. Katreena Scott, speaker at OISE’s May 30, 2017 Jackson Lecture, the four-part video series highlights common myths and misconceptions about mental health in young people.

In the videos, OISE News takes to the streets of Toronto and asks people a series of multiple choice questions. Dr. Scott, Canada Research Chair and psychologist, then weighs in with the answers, adding further insight to the equation.

Here's a snapshot:

Question 1: In Canada, at what age period do most mental health problems begin?

A) There is no majority age at which it begins
B) 70% of mental health problems begin during childhood or adolescence
C) 60% of mental health problems begin in early adulthood 

Question 2: In Canada, which youth are 14 times more likely to commit suicide and have substance abuse problems?

A) Kids who are LGBTQ
B) Kids who have a parent with a drug/alcohol addiction
C) Those who are in low-income families

Question 3: The following is a sign that a child may be facing a mental health problem:

A) Difficulty concentrating on work
B) Frequent absences
C) Fighting on the playground
D) Seems sad, cries a lot
E) All of the above

Question 4: If a child seems sad all the time and often asks to leave class because of a stomach ache, what should a teacher do?

A) Contact the parents and recommend mental health treatment
B) Ensure other kids don’t start copying the student
C) Talk to him/her 
D) Send the child home with a note that he/she wasn’t feeling well

U of T student: ‘Keep doing what you’re doing’

One of the people interviewed was University of Toronto student Tiancheng Qu. He said the questions made him think carefully about important issues, and some of the answers surprised him. He also noted he had a friend affected by mental health issues.

“It’s great you’re doing this, keep doing what you’re doing,” he said of the series and lecture.

It’s that kind of response Dr. Scott hopes to generate at OISE’s signature event, titled, Mind the Gap: Schools and Our Mental Health System.

“Mental health is a crucial topic to address. It impacts all aspects of our society – and as this video series highlights, there’s a lot that’s misunderstood. People need to be informed. This lecture is an important part of that process,” she said.

According to the Mental Health Commission of Canada (CMCC), 15-25 per cent of children and youth – or 1.2 million Canadian children – suffer at least one mental health problem or illness. That can include depression, anxiety, eating disorders and substance abuse.

“Mental disorders represent the most common and disabling condition affecting young people, and therefore have major implications for students and schools. We need to do something about this,” Dr. Scott said.

Jackson Lecture to create important dialogue

With youth mental health taking centre stage at this year’s Jackson Lecture, OISE Dean Glen Jones said it will be an important opportunity to educate and engage on a topic of increasing concern.

“This year’s event will make a major impact in terms of creating awareness around issues in mental health of our young people. We’re pleased and proud that Dr. Scott is generating important dialogue on a topic that affects so many in our school system and society.”

To view the video series, click on the video above. Test your knowledge as the series unfolds with a new video each day on Friday, May 26, Monday, May 29 and Tuesday, May 30.

For more on the Jackson Lecture, please visit the event Facebook page