I was going to publish this blog at a later date but in light of ‘Mental Health Awareness’ day yesterday I thought this was a more opptune time.
‘According to the Mental Heath Foundation, every year in the UK 70 million workdays are lost due to mental illness, including anxiety, depression and stress related conditions. This means mental illness is the leading cause of sickness and absence from work’ – Counselling Directory
Mental illness has different shapes and forms. Some people don’t even realise they suffer from a form of mental illness until they come out the other side. Some people are really good and well practiced at hiding the pain and sadness they feel inside that nobody would know they are suffering.
1 in 4 people will experience at least one diagnosable mental health problem. It can happen to anyone, it doesn’t matter where you live or what you do or how much money you may earn every one is potentially susceptible to a form of mental illnesss.
‘Anxiety is considered one of the most common mental health problems. In 2013 there were 8.2million cases recorded in the U.K alone’
I personally have suffered from anxiety which effected me so much my doctor recommended medication. It was a hard time for me and my family as they saw the sadness and fear I was dealing with. During the worst time of my anxiety I literally felt as if I was in a black hole filled with fear and panic with no way out. Some days I wasn’t able to go to work & some days I would have panic attacks whilst out with friends. It was a very frustrating time for me, I just wanted to feel like my old self. I just wanted to be normal.
One day it got so bad, I couldn’t go to work and I had just had enough with trying to battle these feelings. I wanted it all to end.
This is when I decided I needed professional help and went to my GP. I discussed how I was feeling with my doctor and he asked various questions about my home life and life in general. But I had no answer to give him as to why I was feeling this way or what caused it. Looking back now I would say it was a mixture of work stress, a really hard break up that had happened months before & unresolved issues from my younger days. All these feelings and stresses I had pushed to the back of my mind just erupted.
I was fortunate to have a doctor that was patient and empathetic who listened to all my concerns and worries. He sent a referral to Mind Matters and prescribed me medication to use when I was having an anxiety attack. The medication worked and made me feel much better. It helped me get back to my normal self. My experience with Mind Matters was really positive, they were efficient and understanding and reassured me that if I relapsed into my bad anxiety faze they were always there to talk to.
Today I am off the medication and anxiety free. I know my triggers and how to calm my nerves without the use of medication but I know it’s always there if I really need it.
Depression can be caused by various different reasons for many people. It can cause people to feel so down they don’t know what the purpose of living is any more which in some cases can lead to suicide.
‘Suicide is the leading cause of death among young people aged 20-34 years in the U.K. and it is considerably higher in men, with around three times as many men dying as a result of suicide compared to women’ – Mental Health Foundation
The Mental Health Foundation say that men are more likely to commit suicide because they are less likely to talk about depressive feelings or suicidal thoughts compared to women. I really believe that young boys and teenage boys should be encouraged discuss their feelings rather than being told to be a ‘big boy’ or ‘man up’.
Expressing feelings of sadness or worry are nothing to be ashamed about and there should be more open talks about how you feel in schools and colleges. Children and young adults to should be encouraged to talk to their parents/guardians, teachers or even use helplines if they need some one to talk to. Especially in this age of social media where the use of online bullying is increasing.
I encourage every one to openly talk about how they feel, listen to others and be empathetic because you never know when some one can be truly in need of some one to talk to.
Don’t forget to take time out of the hustle and bustle of every day life and check yourself and your Mental Health!
If you are suffering from a mental health problem and would like to discuss it please contact your GP or click the links below;