When we are mentally and physically well, we are able to:

  • do things we like to do,
  • feel motivated
  • realise our own potential
  • cope with everyday stresses and strains (resilience)
  • thrive and work productively and fruitfully
  • make a contribution to our community
  • socialise

When an individual is not mentally well there are a number of changes that occur, these include:

  • changes in thinking, behaviour, moods and emotions
  • changes in our physical wellbeing such as sleeping and eating
  • changes in our social wellbeing and how we interact with others
  • loss of confidence
  • and more ……

Medical Diagnosis

There are many different diagnosis of mental ill health. However the main categories include the following:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Bipolar (Manic Depression)
  • Psychosis – Schizophrenia, Personality Disorders, Dissociative Identity Disorder
  • Many others……

Signs and Symptoms

There are many different signs and symptoms of mental health difficulties. These can impact on the indivdual at many different levels including:

  • Emotional – sadness, anger, anxiety, irritation, low confidence and self-esteem, lack of motivation and more.
  • Thought – negative thoughts, racing thoughts
  • Physical and physiological – lack of sleep, digestion, racing heartbeat, raised blood pressure, muscle tension, headaches, tiredness, dizziness and more.
  • Social – lack of enjoyment, social disengagement.

Some symptoms are more often associated with certain diagnosis, for example, extreme low mood is associated with depression but can also be present in other diagnosis. Others such as feeling anxious may persist across all diagnosis. Hearing voices, hallucinations and delusions tend to be associated with psychotic disorders.

An individual may be affected to the point that they are unable to deal with everyday strains and stresses and to continue with normal routines.


Medical and social research seems to suggest the presence of a number of triggers that may lead to mental illness. These can include family history, traumatic experiences such as bereavement or abuse, and things we learn through our childhood and adult experiences, for example fear of dogs.

Medical Treatments

Medication – There are many different medical treatments including tablets and injections. These include Antidepressants, Tranquilisers and Antipsychotic medications.

Talking Therapies – Counselling, Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT)

Always talk to your GP to consider the different options and what may work best for you.


There are many different steps we can, and should, take to look after ourselves. These include:

  • Therapy – Counselling, CBT, Hypnotherapy
  • Meditation – Mindfulness, Yoga, Relaxation, Deep Breathing Exercises.
  • Thought Management – Positive thinking and behaviour
  • Physical Exercise – Physical activity e.g. walking, swimming, gym, cycling
  • Socialising – Talk to friends and family, group activities
  • Faith & Spirituality
  • Seek Support

Who Else Can Help

NHS Services – GPs, MyWellbeing College, First Response
Community & Voluntary Organisations such as Sharing Voices, Samaritans and Guideline.

Organisations That Can Help