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Mental health, art and creativity: re-discover the child within

Mats Niklasson (Mats Niklasson is based at Vestibularis Clinic, Center for Sensorimotor Research, Kalmar, Sweden)

Mental Health and Social Inclusion

ISSN: 2042-8308

Article publication date: 17 May 2022

Issue publication date: 29 June 2022




The purpose of this paper was to investigate, using a “dipole model” of the brain as the foundation, if there could be a common denominator between the different concepts of mental health, art and creativity.


After a discussion of the three concepts of mental health, art and creativity, respectively, they were elaborated and compared in contrast to Bergström’s “dipole model” of the brain with the aim to look for a common denominator.


The findings tentatively suggest that playfulness over the lifespan might be a common denominator for the gaining and keeping of mental health.

Research limitations/implications

The author presents his personal perspective on these topics. There are many contrasting ways to view them.

Practical implications

A recognition of the importance of lifelong playing might contribute to improved mental health.

Social implications

Allowing a more playful behaviour through the lifespan could have a healthy impact for a society.


This conceptual paper might possibly add to the present literature through its emphasis on the importance of lifelong playfulness, which is suggested to be added within the frames of the concepts of mental health, art and creativity.



Niklasson, M. (2022), "Mental health, art and creativity: re-discover the child within", Mental Health and Social Inclusion, Vol. 26 No. 3, pp. 292-298.



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