The Link Between Mental and Financial Health (MNP 3 Minute Debt Break)

2024-01-12  3 minute read

Lifestyle Debt


he close link between mental and financial health is undeniable. Compromised mental health not only impacts personal well-being but also has significant economic implications. Similarly… financial stress can severely affect mental health.

Mature couple calculating bills at home using laptop

In Canada, financial worries are a common issue. Approximately 46% of Canadians are just $200 away from financial insolvency, and 27% report incomes insufficient to cover their bills and debts. Understandably, this situation leads to significant stress and mental health challenges for many. A Statistics Canada survey reveals that 43% of those struggling to meet financial obligations exhibit moderate to severe anxiety symptoms.

Financial concerns, such as loans, credit card debts, mortgages, childcare costs, and rising living expenses, affect Canadians across all income brackets. These stressors can profoundly impact mental health and well-being. In the office of  MNP, we often see clients whose mental health has deteriorated due to financial pressures. The cycle of debt, affordability issues, and mental health can become perilous if not addressed.

In addition, financial instability can lead to detrimental coping mechanisms like overspending, which increases feelings of guilt or shame. This behavior can harm savings, increase debt, and negatively affect credit scores. Statistically, individuals facing mental health challenges are less likely to be employed, also negatively affecting their financial security. Mental illness's economic burden in Canada is estimated at $51 billion annually, considering health care costs, lost productivity, and reduced quality of life. Each week, at least half a million  employed Canadians cannot work due to mental health problems.

These statistics underscore the economic and social costs of mental illness, emphasizing the challenges individuals and families face. Enhancing mental health benefits everyone.

But… there are steps you can make to take control of your financial and personal well-being! Obtain your credit report and score. Record your debts in detail. And create a basic budget based on your income and expenses. This process is crucial for gaining perspective on your financial situation.

The Mental Health Continuum Model can be a useful tool for understanding financial stressors' impact on mental health. Look for this model online. It uses color codes from green (positive well-being) to red (high distress) for self-evaluation. And… after you received your results, It’s important to recognize when to seek help. 

For individuals looking for personal support, the Canadian Mental Health Association can be a great place to access the right insights, tools and resources to begin the journey towards mental health and wellness. You can also obtain a free and confidential assessment of your financial situation with a Licensed Insolvency Trustee at MNP LTD. As the only government-regulated debt professionals, MNP provides a full range of debt-relief options, including Consumer Proposals, informal debt settlements and Bankruptcy.

Remember, seeking help is a sign of strength, not weakness. It’s the first step towards a healthier, debt-free future.

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