Deep Dives: Why is #MentalHealth Trending?

2023, Health, Climate + Environment

For our first Deep Dive, SFU Public Square questioned the democratization of mental health. The demand for mental health services has surged among young Canadians since the onset of the pandemic, but with long wait times, limited availability by service providers, a lack of affordable options, and many other barriers to access, people are not finding the care they need.

This Deep Dive explored the driving force behind this increased need for counselling and therapy and question the various factors motivating this surge in demand. Additionally, the conversation considered the presence of #MentalHealth on social media and the digital dimension of care – such as the presence of therapists and psychologists online and mental health going viral on platforms such as Instagram and TikTok. Finally, the commercialization of mental health care was discussed, with online services such as ‘BetterHelp’ or virtual life-coaches finding mainstream success.  

About Deep Dives

Deep Dives is an opportunity to delve into timely, controversial, and important topics that are being discussed in the public discourse. By bringing together knowledge holders with lived experience, SFU faculty, journalists and members of the media, storytellers, and students, Deep Dives will feature conversations on trending subjects.  

Billed as more than a lecture series, we envision Deep Dives as a collaborative discussion with audience and participants rather than a traditional presentation, allowing for a more dynamic learning experience for all.

Future potential topics for Deep Dives include urban isolation and building community in a post-COVID Vancouver; censorship in the 21st century; artificial intelligence and its biases; voluntourism and ethical travel in a time marked by climate change; the burden of contraceptives on women and investing in male birth control; the rise of the far-right and nationalism in Canada; and so many more!