Enduring mental health: Prevalence and prediction.

Published

Journal Article

We review epidemiological evidence indicating that most people will develop a diagnosable mental disorder, suggesting that only a minority experience enduring mental health. This minority has received little empirical study, leaving the prevalence and predictors of enduring mental health unknown. We turn to the population-representative Dunedin cohort, followed from birth to midlife, to compare people never-diagnosed with mental disorder (N = 171; 17% prevalence) to those diagnosed at 1-2 study waves, the cohort mode (N = 409). Surprisingly, compared to this modal group, never-diagnosed Study members were not born into unusually well-to-do families, nor did their enduring mental health follow markedly sound physical health, or unusually high intelligence. Instead, they tended to have an advantageous temperament/personality style, and negligible family history of mental disorder. As adults, they report superior educational and occupational attainment, greater life satisfaction, and higher-quality relationships. Our findings draw attention to "enduring mental health" as a revealing psychological phenotype and suggest it deserves further study. (PsycINFO Database Record

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Schaefer, JD; Caspi, A; Belsky, DW; Harrington, H; Houts, R; Horwood, LJ; Hussong, A; Ramrakha, S; Poulton, R; Moffitt, TE

Published Date

  • February 2017

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 126 / 2

Start / End Page

  • 212 - 224

PubMed ID

  • 27929304

Pubmed Central ID

  • 27929304

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1939-1846

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0021-843X

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1037/abn0000232

Language

  • eng