World Mental Health Day

This year’s theme set by the World Federation for Mental Health is suicide prevention.

What are mental health problems?

Our mental health is just like our physical health: everybody has it and we need to take care of it.

Mental health problems affect around one in four people in any given year. They range from common problems, such as depression and anxiety, to rarer problems such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

Prevention is something that we can all individually help with. A short conversation with another person can sometimes be enough to make the difference between life and death for them.

Suicide prevention: WAIT

Prevention is something that we can all individually help with. A short conversation with another person can sometimes be enough to make the difference between life and death for them.

The advice ‘WAIT’ is one good way to remember how you can support another person who may be suicidal. It stands for:

Watch out for signs of distress and uncharacteristic behaviour

e.g. social withdrawal, excessive quietness, irritability, uncharacteristic outburst, talking about death or suicide

Ask “are you having suicidal thoughts?”

Asking about suicide does not encourage it, nor does it lead a person to start thinking about it; in fact it may help prevent it, and can start a potentially life-saving conversation

It will pass – assure your loved one that, with help, their suicidal feelings will pass with time

Talk to others – encourage your loved one to seek help from a GP or health professional such as The Tomorrow Project.

 

Seeking support for yourself

Samaritans offer a 24-hours a day, 7 days a week support service. Call them FREE on 116 123. You can also email jo@samaritans.org

Papyrus is a dedicated service for people up to the age of 35 who are worried about how they are feeling or anyone concerned about a young person. You can call the HOPElineUK number on 0800 068 4141, text 07786 209697 or email pat@papyrus-uk.org

NHS Choices: 24-hour national helpline providing health advice and information. Call them free on 111.

C.A.L.M.: National helpline for men to talk about any troubles they are feeling. Call 0800 58 58 58.

Support After Suicide Partnership offers practical and emotional support on their website for people bereaved and affected by suicide.

The Tomorrow Project offers free therapeutic support to anyone struggling with suicidal thoughts. We also support anyone bereaved by suicide.

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