08 October 2017

World Mental Health Day 2017

10th October is World Mental Health Day and it's a day for global mental health education, awareness and advocacy against the social stigmas associated.

At SP Services we believe it's really important to raise mental health awareness. We're very pleased to be supporting a number of events both locally in Shropshire and across the UK this month.

Mental health is something that can effect people from all walks of life, from the military, to emergency staff, to members of the public. We all know someone who suffers with some degree of mental health illness. Those suffering with mental health issues is on the increase.

There are many statistics about mental health that most people are not aware of. For example, did you know that it is estimates that 1 in 6 people (in the past week) experienced a common mental health problem? Mental health and behavioural problems eg depression, anxiety and drug use are reported to be the main drivers in disability world wide, causing over 40 million years of disability in 20-29 year olds.

If you support someone with a mental illness, you may face practical and emotional problems from time to time.

  • There is no ‘one size fits all’ for supporting someone with a mental illness.
  • Everyone is a different individual.
  • It can help to understand the diagnosis and how it affects the person. Setting out roles and responsibilities together can be useful.
  • Be patient – getting better can take time. Sometimes, a short amount of time, sometimes a very long time.
  • The person you know may have very challenging and complex behaviour. This can cause a lot of stress between you and the person you are caring for. But, there is ALWAYS help available.
  • Encourage the person you’re supporting to be independent and take part in everyday activities.
  • If you live together setting out house rules can be beneficial.
  • Make a crisis or emergency plan. Its something you won’t want to do, but its something that you should have.
  • Remember that you are not to blame if things get difficult, and sometimes they will.
  • Make sure you look after yourself and your own wellbeing. You have to look after yourself in order to fully support someone else.

There is a stigma attached to mental health, especially regarding medication. There is an assumption that taking medications like mirtazipine (and others) to help with the effects of mental health issues, is ‘giving up’ or ‘choosing the easy way’. The truth is that because of the negative labels placed on those diagnosed with a mental health issue, they are more likely to discontinue their treatment because they are embarrassed, ashamed or afraid. This is the point where we need to stand up, as a community, and take a stand against these stigmas. It would be thought to be irrational if a person suffering from a chest infection refused medication, because they felt it made them seem ‘weak’.

Sometimes it feels like no one is there, you feel alone and helpless. But there are people there to help.

Samaritans - Whatever you are going through, call us free, any time, from any phone on 116 or 123. -

Mind - Blue Light Programme - Mind is delivering the Blue Light Programme to provide mental health support for emergency services staff and volunteers from ambulance, fire, police and search and rescue services across England and Wales -

Referenced information:


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