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Time to talk and break the silence around mental health

by Gemma Melling

Time to Talk Day 2020 will take place on Thursday, 6 February.

Throughout the day, residents are encouraged to talk about mental health, showing that such conversations aren’t difficult.  This makes Time to Talk Day the perfect opportunity to get your community talking about mental health.

Mental health problems affect one in four people, yet many people are made to feel isolated, ashamed and worthless because of this. Time to Talk Day encourages everyone to be more open about mental health – to talk, listen and change lives.

For some reason, there is a stigma around mental health and by encouraging people to talk about it will help to break down these barriers.

Find it difficult to talk about mental health? Try this game:

Talking about mental health doesn’t need to be awkward. This year, the popular game ‘Would you rather?’ is being used to help break the ice and get the conversation flowing. Examples include:

Would you rather have the neck of an ostrich or talk to a friend burying their feelings?

Would you rather be stuck in a spider’s web or talk to a friend who feels trapped in their thoughts?

About Time to Talk Day

Time to Talk Day  is run by Time to Change and aims to help to spread the word that you don’t need to be an expert to talk about mental health. Time to Change is the UK’s biggest programme to challenge mental health stigma and discrimination and is run by the charities Mind and Rethink Mental Illness.

So whatever you’re doing on Thursday, 6 February, ensure you make the time to talk about mental health.

Councillor Sean Donnelly, Cabinet Member for Health and Social Care, said: “With one in four people experiencing a mental health problem each year, it’s really important that you show someone you’re there when they need you.  Time to Talk Day is the perfect time to start that conversation, and keep it going.  Text a friend, chat to a colleague or organise a get together – start a conversation about mental health. Listening is just as important as talking.”

Further information is available on the Time for Change website.

If you have concerns about your own mental health, or that of a friend or family member, please speak to your GP.