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Understanding Mental Health Practice

Understanding Mental Health Practice

First Edition

December 2017 | 184 pages | Learning Matters
Mental health is a vast and fascinating subject but knowing where to begin can be challenging. This book focuses on the fundamentals of mental health care. It is packed full of ‘need-to-know’ information that will help students understand what is meant by mental health and wellbeing, be aware of the common mental health problems, as well as the typical interventions and treatment options available. The book focuses in on the most essential knowledge providing the ideal starting point for anyone looking to gain an initial understanding of mental health.
Mental and physical health and wellbeing
Suicide risk and mental health
Mental health assessment and care planning
Psychotherapeutic approaches to mental healthcare
Recovery from mental health problems

A clear, digestible introduction to the subject.

Miss Amy Allen
School of Health & Social Care, Nottingham Trent University
October 22, 2019

As a means to review the book, I decided to have two highly academic students to read a few chapters each and see how they found the book and here are the students' comments:
Student 1 = "Understanding Mental Health Practice". I found it to be a good introduction to mental health practice. The case studies helped to contextualise the content and the activities helped to consider how theory applies to practice.
Student 2 = I found the book to be a good introduction to mental health concepts and I think it will stand me in good stead for future placements. I would recommend it to students as it discusses, what I found to be, the dominating issues and approaches currently at the forefront of mental health practice.
It introduces therapeutic approaches alongside pharmacology in treating common mental health issues, assessment and care planning and suicide risk and recovery, all of which I encountered on a daily basis during my placement.

In my opinion, the author has a clear agenda and ideology concerning mental health practice and, while I agree with it, it does present as very idealistic and students reading it before experiencing practice might feel disappointed if they are expecting something similar. Maybe it is outside the scope of the book but perhaps a chapter addressing the direction of travel to the author’s vision would have been comforting. It has a feel of ‘I’ll tell you what you lot should do’ without any hint that these ideas have been developed and stress tested though application.

In summary, I would certainly recommend it to students as it introduces many of the concepts and much of the vocabulary readers will encounter in the field and perhaps it will stimulate a conversation about alternatives to the current system of mental health practice.

Raymond Ndengeya (Reviewer):
Concluding remarks from : As a Mental Health Lecturer I find this book to be a good vehicle to transmit the message of the mental health agenda, as it should be. It gives students a basis to assess their placements on and stimulate discussions aimed at improving patient outcomes and services. It is rich in terminologies and techniques as well as processes that should help students form a solid foundation in mental health theory.
Clear examples and case studies certainly help students form a mental picture of the concepts.
Highly Recommendable.

Mr Dzingai Raymond Ndengeya
Learning and Development, Isle of Man Department of Health
November 28, 2018

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ISBN: 9781473966543

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