Journal of Depression and Anxiety

Journal of Depression and Anxiety
Open Access

ISSN: 2167-1044

+44 1223 790975


The Medicine Wheel and Resilience within an Indigenous Community in Northern Ontario

David Danto

This article addresses Indigenous mental health in a particular Indigenous community by using a strength-based, medicine wheel model in an attempt to organize and interpret participant narratives through a culturally sensitive approach. Some Indigenous communities in northern Ontario struggle with a host of mental health issues including high rates of suicide, substance abuse and depression. We avoid mentioning any communities by name, to protect the confidentiality of participants. A challenge for this study, as for the bulk of research within Indigenous communities, was the “outsider” status of the researchers themselves. The medicine wheel identifies four central themes: Physical health, intellectual health, spiritual health and emotional health. By organizing our qualitative analysis along these lines, we sought to frame the results in culturally appropriate terms, and thereby set the stage for community conversations regarding mental health.