Mental illness or mental disorder

The terms ‘mental illness’ and ‘mental disorder’ are often used interchangeably and describe a wide range of mental health and behavioural disorders which vary in duration and/or severity. Those with a mental illness often have differences in their thinking, mood or behaviour associated with significant distress and impaired or reduced functioning. Examples include: mood disorders (like major depression and bipolar disorder), psychotic disorders (like schizophrenia), and anxiety, personality and eating disorders. In the ACT more than 75,000 people aged 15 – 85 years can experience a common mental illness in any one year.