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J Ment Health. 2014 Feb;23(1):25-30. doi: 10.3109/09638237.2013.841866.

Meanings of well-being from the perspectives of youth recently diagnosed with psychosis.

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Prevention and Early Intervention Program for Psychoses, Douglas Mental Health University Institute , Montreal, Quebec , Canada .



The phenomenon of well-being has attracted a surge of attention in mental health policy, clinical practice and research internationally. Yet, the definitions of well-being remain elusive, and there is limited understanding on its meanings from the perspectives of youth mental health service users.


This study explored the meanings of well-being from the perspectives of youth mental health service users diagnosed with psychosis in the past 3 years.


Using a qualitative approach, we conducted semi-structured interviews and participant-photography elicited focus groups with 17 youth recruited from an early intervention program for psychoses and a mental health program specializing in the delivery of psychiatric services to street youth. Analysis combined the methods of constructivist grounded theory and narrative inquiry.


The findings illustrate five key themes in participants' conceptualizations of well-being: multidimensionality; active oriented states; social environment; identity; and normality. Dimensions of well-being identified in participants' accounts include: psychological, physical, emotional, moral/virtuous, financial/material, spiritual, and social aspects.


Our heuristic framework for conceptualizing well-being, grounded in the narrative accounts of youth participants, can inform the future planning and design of interventions, research, and outcome measures pertaining to the well-being of youth recently diagnosed with psychosis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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