Public Health England (PHE) is encouraging adults to look after their mental health as they do their physical health through its new ‘Every Mind Matters’ campaign – launching as a pilot exclusively in the Midlands today (Wednesday) which marks World Mental Health Day.
The new campaign highlights that while we can all feel stressed, anxious, low or have trouble sleeping, there are simple actions we can take to manage them and prevent these issues from becoming more serious. It encourages people to visit the Every Mind Matters guide, a free NHS-approved online resource which provides expert advice, practical tips, and experiences from real people to help manage these issues and those of others.
According to recent statistics, each year around one in four people in England experience a mental health problem, and the proportion of diagnosable common mental health conditions has increased by 20 per cent in 20 years.
A new survey of adults in the Midlands conducted for PHE also shows nearly three quarters (73%) of people in the East Midlands report experiencing one or more of low mood, anxiety, stress and trouble sleeping frequently or occasionally.
Stress is the most common response, with over half (55%) experiencing this frequently or occasionally, compared to 54% for sleeplessness, 47% for low mood, and 41% for anxiety.
The survey also found that more than two thirds (69%) of adults in the East Midlands say they look after their physical health on a weekly basis, but less than half (47%) look after their mental health as regularly.
These figures highlight the importance of helping people to better understand and take action on their own mental health.
Having good mental health can help us feel and function better, have more positive relationships with those around us and deal with and manage difficult times now and into the future. Over time, having good mental health may also reduce our risk of physical health problems.
Matt Day, Consultant in Healthcare Public Health at Public Health England in the East Midlands, said: “With the pressures of modern life, it’s normal to feel stressed, anxious, low or have trouble sleeping some of the time. But when these become overwhelming or frequent they can manifest into a more serious problem.
“It’s just as important to take action to look after your mental health, as you would your physical health. Our campaign helps you take your mental health into your own hands, so you can protect and improve your own mental health and that of others.”
Juliet Hassard, Assistant Professor in Occupational Health Psychology at the Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences at the University of Nottingham, said: “The campaign and associated toolkit provides a wealth of evidence-based resources and advice, which can be used by anyone and everyone to begin the process of enhancing their own mental health and overall wellbeing.
“This is a vital and important step forward in promoting the mental health of individuals in the Midlands, but also nationally.
“Central to this campaign is the concept of empowerment. Empowering anyone and everyone to invest in their own mental health and overall wellbeing, just as they would their physical health; through developing their own knowledge, skills and repertoire of effective self-care activities and behaviours.“
The Every Mind Matters guide also offers support for social anxiety, trauma, obsessions and compulsions, or panic attacks and provides information for people wishing to help friends, family and colleagues experiencing mental health problems.
Every Mind Matters has been developed in conjunction with leading charities, academics and clinicians and is endorsed by leading experts in mental health.
It is being promoted to adults across the Midlands, and is being supported by a range of public sector, charity, and commercial partners.
• To access the Every Mind Matters resources, visit: www.nhs.uk/oneyou/every-mind-matters/