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World Mental Health Day, 10 October 2013

User AvatarPosted by Bobbie Walkem-Smith at 08/10/2013 08:16:45

As we begin to feel a wintery chill in the air and the nights begin to draw in, it’s quite common for some of us to feel a bit low. For most, the feeling will pass. After all, it’s perfectly natural for our mood to change depending on the time of year and the ups and downs of everyday life.

But, if a low mood doesn’t go away, it may be a sign of depression. It’s important that people suffering from depression or indeed, any other type of mental health problem, seek help as soon as possible.

If you suffer from mental health problems, you’re not alone - it is likely that one in four of us will suffer with some type of mental health illness during our life. That’s why supporting people with mental illness is a key priority of NHS Canterbury and Coastal Clinical Commissioning Group.

As an organisation with responsibility for local people’s healthcare we are committed to helping people access timely and appropriate support, as close to home as possible. Whether it’s an older person with dementia, someone self-harming, or a new mum suffering with post-natal depression – the message is: there is help available.

World Mental Health day, which takes place on 10 October, is an annual event to help raise awareness of mental health issues. The aim is to get everyone talking openly about mental illnesses and the treatment and preventions that are available to us all. To celebrate the day locally, GPs from across the Canterbury and Coastal area will be coming together to hear talks from Kent and Medway NHS Social Care Partnership Trust on self-harm, and the Armed Forces Network on veteran mental health.

We believe it is vital that mental health is an issue that we proactively talk about and would encourage others across the area to do the same, to help overcome the stigma that is sometimes attached to mental health illness.

If you have been struggling to cope with your emotions or life is feeling too difficult, please don’t suffer in silence. These are the signs that you may need help. Contact your GP to make an appointment (out-of-hours call NHS 111), or alternatively visit the Live It Well website, www.liveitwell.org.uk – which is full of guidance and information on local mental health services. It also provides information on self-referral for talking therapies.

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