Deviation from ideal mental health

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  • Created by: izzy
  • Created on: 13-06-13 18:39

Deviation from ideal mental health (DIMH)

This definition stands out by not defining abnormality directly, but instead attempting to define a state of ideal mental health. Deviation from these ideals would then be defined as abnormality. Jahoda introduced the first systematic approach in 1958, listing a number of characteristics she felt indicated ideal mental health. These are listed below (Vaillant, 2003):

  • an individual should be in touch with their own identity and feelings
  • they should be resistant to stress
  • they should be focused on the



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