A new survey, commissioned by Public Health England (PHE) has found that half of adults feel that the pandemic has impacted negatively on their mental health and wellbeing.
Of the people surveyed, significant numbers said they had been experiencing more anxiety (46%), stress (44%), sleep problems (34%) and low mood (46%) over the course of the pandemic.
To support people during this time, PHE has launched Better Health – Every Mind Matters with tips and advice to help adults look after their mental health and wellbeing – and help support others such as family and friends, and children and young people.
Every Mind Matters Mind Plan
The campaign encourages people to get a free NHS-approved Mind Plan from the Every Mind Matters website. By answering five simple questions, adults will get a personalised action plan with practical tips to help them deal with stress and anxiety, boost their mood, sleep better and feel more in control.
The Every Mind Matters website also includes practical tips and support on how adults can deal with uncertainty, how to cope with money and job worries and how to look after both their own and their family’s mental wellbeing while staying at home.
The Better Health – Every Mind Matters website also has a range of dedicated support and resources to help parents look after the mental wellbeing of their children and for young people to care for their own mental health.
Some tips for dealing with uncertainty include;
Take stock of how you feel: Put time aside to examine your current situation and consider how you really feel, perhaps talking it through with someone you trust
Focus on the short term: The further we look into the future, the easier it is to get overwhelmed by long-term uncertainty. Instead, try to focus on the day-to-day, and think about what’s in your power to do right now
Acknowledge what’s working: Even when it might feel like everything is up in the air or going wrong, there will be some things, however small, that do not change. It could be a close relationship, our favourite meal or a song that means something to us
Reframe your thoughts: In difficult times like this, it can be easy to get caught up in negative thoughts, feelings and actions. For most people, at this time, feeling uneasy is an understandable response to the uncertainty present in everyday life. It can be helpful to step back, examine the evidence for your thoughts and explore other ways of looking at the situation
Find a new rhythm: Routine and structure can be a powerful way to regain consistency and reduce uncertainty. Make time to de-stress and wind down each day – build in positive activities like exercise, relaxation, hobbies, speaking to friends or spending time with those close to you, and think about a positive sleep routine
Cllr Sean Donnelly, Cabinet Member for Health and Social Care, said:
“We’re all dealing with a lot of uncertainty right now so taking care of our mental health and wellbeing is really important.
“If you’ve been struggling with your mood, stress, anxiety or sleep taking the Every Mind Matters mind plan quiz is good idea. It will give you a personalised mental wellbeing action plan with simple tips and advice.
“You’ll also find other expert advice and practical ideas to help look after your mind on the Better Health Every Mind Matters website and we have lots of information about local mental health support including for children and young people as well as adults.”