Mental Health First Aid Supporting Older Adults (Virtual)

Course Materials

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The Mental Health Commission of Canada reports that one in every five Canadians experiences a mental health or substance use problem within a given year. While people often know a lot about physical illness, most people have less knowledge about mental health or substance use problems. This lack of understanding often leads to fear and negative attitudes towards those living with these problems. It prevents people from seeking help for themselves, and from providing appropriate support to people around them.

Canada, like other industrialized countries, has an aging population. As of July 1, 2015, there were more people aged 65 years and older in Canada than children under the age of 10. By 2030 nearly one in four Canadians will be an older adult.

With the World Health Organization defining health as, “not merely the absence of disease but rather a state of complete physical, mental and social well‑being”, it is important to acknowledge that as a person ages, their physical, mental, and social health will change. These three dimensions of health are interdependent and can impact each other positively and negatively.

Recognizing an older adult’s declining mental well-being, or mental health crisis, and providing mental health first aid may reduce harm and can support recovery, resilience, and an improved quality of life.

Course Objectives

Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) is the support provided to a person who may be experiencing a decline in their mental well-being or a crisis.

Participants will learn how to…

  • recognize signs that an older adult may be experiencing a decline in their mental well-being or a mental health or substance use crisis
  • have conversations that encourage an older adult to:
    • talk about their mental well-being
    • discuss professional and other supports that could help with recovery to improved mental well-being
    • reach out to these supports
  • assist in a mental health or substance use crisis situation
  • check in with one’s own mental well-being and take action as needed
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Training Includes

  • 1 Module
  • 14 Topics
  • 1 Quiz
  • Training Certificate