What can I do to look after my mental health and wellbeing during the COVID-19 pandemic?
During these uncertain times, it’s especially important that we all take simple steps to look after our mental health and wellbeing.
The Five Ways to Wellbeing sets out the simple steps we can all take to look after our mental health and wellbeing. You can also read useful ‘tips for everyday living’ on the MIND mental health charity website and find practical ways to look after your mental health on the Mental Health Foundation website.
You can also find specific resources on how to look after your mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic here.
I need support for my mental health. Where should I start?
Accessing CTM wellbeing support (for CTM staff)
CTM staff wellbeing (for CTM staff)
Online self-help resources from Public Health Wales
You can also find specific resources on how to look after your mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic on the Public Health Wales website. This includes details of online courses, apps, books, leaflets and websites. To access this information, please click here.
SilverCloud online mental health therapy courses
People across Wales can now access free online therapy without needing to go through their GP.
People aged 16 and over experiencing mild to moderate anxiety, depression or stress can sign-up for a 12-week course of SilverCloud online therapy via their smartphone, tablet, laptop or desktop computer.
The roll-out of direct access to online therapy for Wales’ entire 16+ population recognises that people need immediate help in managing their mental health and wellbeing as the impact of COVID-19 continues to be felt, and reduces barriers to accessing this support.
To sign up or find out more, visit https://nhswales.silvercloudhealth.com/signup/.
Mental health helplines
The free CALL Mental Health Helpline for Wales is available 24/7 and offers confidential advice on a range of mental health related matters as well as a comprehensive list of support services in your local area and information on how to access them.
Telephone: 0800 132 737
Or text ‘help’ to 81066
Speak to your GP
If you are feeling out of control emotionally, or are worried that you may have a mental health problem, there are a number of places you could go to first, including speaking to your GP.
GPs are continuing to provide support during the COVID-19 pandemic through a combination of face-to-face, video and telephone consultations.
Your doctor can:.
- Talk about your problems.
- Check whether your problems have a physical cause.
- Give you medicine for depression, anxiety and other conditions.
- Refer you to an appropriate service
Remember: If you think your doctor may be too busy to talk through your problems, you can arrange with the receptionist for a long appointment. Or you could write everything down in a letter and send it to your doctor.
Some GP surgeries offer a quick referral to a service called ‘Active Monitoring’, where you could get help to tackle issues such as Anger Management, Depression, or Anxiety. This service is generally weekly for 5/6 weeks and aims to give you the tools to manage your own mental health, especially if certain feelings and worries recur.
What if these services don’t work? What next?
Many people’s mental health support needs can be met through their GP, self-help group, or through online therapy. But some people may require further support. You may find yourself referred to the Primary Care Mental Health Team or to a Community Mental Health Team.
If you are referred to either of these services, this does not mean that your problems are worse than other peoples are, or that you will take longer to get better. It just means that you may need more specialist help to support you to recovery.
Specialist mental health services, including Community Mental Health Teams, Home Treatment Teams, Primary Care Mental Health Team and inpatient services, have continued to provide support during the COVID-19 pandemic. You will normally need a referral from a healthcare professional to access these services.
For further information, please click here for Frequently Asked Questions for people who are already known to mental health services.