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World Mental Health Day is this Saturday, 10th October – I can’t believe that a year has passed so quickly! World Mental Health Day is an annual event to give us all an opportunity to think about mental health and remove the stigma attached to mental health challenges and illness.
This year’s Mental Health theme set by the World Federation of Mental Health is Mental Health for All – Greater Investment, Greater Access.
The following is a quote from Dr Ingrid Daniels, President of The World Federation for Mental Health:
“The world is experiencing the unprecedented impact of the current global health emergency due to COVID-19 that has also impacted on the mental health of millions of people. We know that the levels of anxiety, fear, isolation, social distancing and restrictions, uncertainty and emotional distress experienced have become widespread as the world struggles to bring the virus under control and to find solutions.
The current worldwide pandemic arose against an already dire mental health landscape that saw mental health conditions on the rise across the globe. About 450 million people live with mental disorders that are among the leading causes of ill-health and disability worldwide (WHO’s World Health Report, 2001). One person in every four will be affected by a mental disorder at some stage of their lives.
The World Health Organization (2018) states that every 40 seconds someone dies by suicide. For every suicide, there are many more people who attempt suicide every year. A prior suicide attempt is the single most important risk factor for suicide in the general population. Suicide is the second leading cause of death among 15 to 29-year-olds while 79% of global suicides occur in low- and middle-income countries.”
We will all know people in our local networks that are finding the current ‘living’ rules tough to cope with and could be experiencing feelings of isolation and anxiety which could bring mental health issues to the fore. That could even be you! If you do know someone, or if that person is you, please try and pick up the phone, check in on them, send an email, text or social media message etc. Just don’t go it alone or leave them to it.
Most of us are now working in a ‘remote’ environment much more frequently and I have personally found it very helpful to be able to reach out to co-workers for support, whether it’s a work related discussion or a quick personal catch up. Staying in touch is vital to supporting mental wellbeing and one another.
If you’re not comfortable chatting to a work colleague on the subject, then there are several external bodies that can help. The links below cover the areas our offices are based but there is support available worldwide:
“What is the bravest thing you‘ve ever said?” asked the boy. “Help”, said the horse. “Asking for help isn’t giving up” said the horse. “It’s refusing to give up.“