Exploring Canadian undergraduate students' mental health literacy and its influence on psychological distress and help-seeking behaviour

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Horne, Karissa L.
University of Lethbridge. Faculty of Education
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Lethbridge, Alta. : University of Lethbridge, Faculty of Education
Despite having mental health literacy (MHL), the prevalence of psychological distress (PD) among university students continues to remain an area of concern. Understanding the relationship between MHL attributes and PD and Help-Seeking Behaviour (HSB) can offer further insight into what knowledge is important for undergraduate students to possess to have a positive impact on their mental health. While many studies have reported a relationship between MHL and help-seeking behaviour, there were mixed findings between MHL and PD. Thus, the current study aimed to explore the extent to which Canadian undergraduate students demonstrate MHL, and its influence on their levels of PD and HSB. A total of 335 participants completed an online survey. Over half of the students demonstrated heightened symptoms of anxiety, depression, and stress. The results indicated that Canadian undergraduate students demonstrate a relatively high level of MHL. Moreover, the findings suggested that some attributes of MHL have a significant relationship with PD and HSB, while others do not. Further research is warranted to better understand the influence of MHL on PD and HSB.
mental health literacy , Canadian undergraduate students , psychological distress , help-seeking behaviour , university students , student mental health