This page is for information purposes only. Please call 111 if you are worried about your health and well-being, or 999 in an emergency. There are also details of other organisations available listed on this page.
What is mental health?
Mental health is on a continuum, it’s something we all have, and any one of us can be affected at different times in our lives. The research suggests that 1 in 6 of us showed symptoms of poor mental health in just the last week, with 1 in 4 of us either having, or being close to someone with, a diagnosable condition.
There are lots of different causes of poor mental health, some of them external, some of them internal. Loss and bereavement, especially since the pandemic, is one example of something that happens to us (external) when we would expect our mood to be low; it’s important we normalise some of our reactions to life changing events. There are things we can do to help ourselves (internal) like knowing when we’re not ok, or engaging in self-care – but there are also things organisations and communities can do to help each other.
Unfortunately, even in the 21st century and certainly in the UK, we still find it hard to talk about how we feel. Even though mental health is now higher on the national agenda, people worry what others will think if they disclose that they’re struggling. This is one reason why it’s important to mind our language and be kind to our mind when we talk about mental health.
There are organisations that are available to help if you’re going through a difficult time, some of them are listed on this page and there is a larger list of links here.
If you are worried about someone, there are some tips further down, but if you’re worried about someone you can also ring 111 to talk through your concerns. You could also signpost them to agencies like Samaritans who are available 24/7, 365 days a year. In an emergency, always call 999.
The Samaritans are available 24/7, 365 days a year on 116 123.
You can also text ‘SHOUT’ to Give Us a Shout on 85258
To find psychological services in your area, visit the NHS website. You may also find the BACP directory of therapists helpful (fees may apply)
If it’s a young person you may find YoungMinds helpful.
If you’re having trouble accessing your GP, Healthwatch may be able to help. There is also an article about visiting your doctor in difficult times here
For a fuller list of links click here
If you are worried about your health, call 111. In an emergency call 999.
How to Help Someone You’re Worried About
There is a fuller article on this here, but here are also some listening tips from Samaritans here, and some further insight below.
You can start by asking if someone is ok, and if they say “I’m fine” it’s ok to ask twice – you could ask “are you sure you’re ok?” or “how are you really?”. Even if they’re not ready to talk yet, this lets them know that you’ll hold a space for them when they’re ready. If they do open up, it’s also important to thank the person for trusting you with what they’ve said; it will have taken a lot of courage to talk about how they feel. You can also suggest avenues of support like their doctor or other agencies that are listed on this page. Try to resist the urge to ‘fix’ though, sometimes people just want someone to listen.
It’s also important that you take care of yourself when you’re worried about someone else. Make time for self-care and create boundaries in terms of recognising how you can – and can’t -realistically help; definitely don’t make promises you can’t keep.
If you don’t know the person that well, but you think someone is in danger, then ring the emergency services. You can report on 111 for health related advice or ring 999 in an emergency.
Managing Uncertainty (Article) – How to Create a Not Knowing Plan. You may also find this video – Managing a Panic Attack -helpful
Mental Health First Aid England – My Whole Self
Self-Soothing with Mindfulness (video)
The Self-Care Check In (video) as featured in Answers In The Dark
You might also like Monday Mojo™ – feel good motivation for the week ahead.
For information about services available on this topic, including mental health awareness and organisational wellness training, click here
This page is for information purposes only. Please call 111 if you are worried about your health and well-being, or 999 in an emergency. You could also contact other organisations available to help like the ones listed on this page.