If you feel as though you are suffering with mental health problems, you are not alone. In the UK approximately 1 in 4 people will experience an issue with their mental health each year.
What you may not consider is how your psychological wellbeing can impact your physical health. Extensive research has shown us that our aches and pains can be directly impacted by our mental state, and that characteristics such as anxiety and stress can intensify the pains that we feel in any given area of the body, even when the physical changes occurring in the tissues can be relatively minor.
This is why, rather than focussing solely on the physical factors, physiotherapists and other healthcare professionals now adopt what is termed a biopsychosocial approach to treating pains. This involves considering both the psychological and social factors of an individual, and how addressing these might be key to the treatment of their problems.
On this page you will find a wide range of links to resources that will help you assess, self-manage and improve your mental well-being. There is also information on to how to access professional support if, for whatever reason, you feel you need it. Your GP practice team will also be able to support you and help you access additional support; many practices have their own specialists with whom you can make an appointment directly to discuss your concerns.
Get your mind plan: By answering 5 simple questions, this will generate some personalised and simple ideas to help you maintain or improve your mental wellbeing, and how to seek additional help if required.
Self-help guides: This will take you to some excellent self-help guides covering issues including low mood, anxiety, alcohol, bereavement and controlling your anger.
Managing your mental well-being, it can be easy to underestimate the impact your mood or worries are having, or dismiss them as unimportant. This link takes you through a list of questions similar to those your health professional may ask to establish whether you may benefit from additional support and advises you on how and when to seek help.
Self-referral to talking therapies: steps2change provides talking therapies for people 16 years and older experiencing problems with anxiety, depression, stress, and offers help with issues like bereavement or the impact of a traumatic event. If you feel that you would like to access talking therapies you don't need to make an appointment with your GP or healthcare professional. You can self-refer to our service by completing an online self -referral.
If you are concerned about your mental wellbeing, your GP surgery is there to help. Health professional are just as concerned for your mental well-being as your physical health and can help you work out the best plan to tackle your concerns. Many surgeries offer direct access to a specialist mental health practitioner; ask when you contact them to make an appointment.”
What is mindfulness? This link explains what mindfulness is and how it may be helpful in managing your mental wellbeing.
Online mindfulness resources:
Below are some online mindfulness resources you may find useful:
1. Steps to change mindfulness relaxation sequences.
2. Mindful breathing exercise video, Every Mind Matters:
Need help now: If you feel that you can no longer cope and are in need of immediate advice or support to help with your mental health please see the details in this link for a list of support that is available right now.