February 24, 2024

South West News

South West News from Gloucestershire to Cornwall

Mental health support available on Blue Monday – and every other day of the year

Help is available for anyone experiencing mental health difficulties on Blue Monday – and any other time of the year.

This is the message from Public Health Cornwall and the NHS Integrated Care Board (ICB) who are reminding residents that it’s okay not to be okay and they don’t have to suffer in silence.

It comes ahead of the third Monday in January (on January 16 in 2023), said to be the most depressing day of the year due to a combination of bad weather, long nights and the post-Christmas comedown.

Mental health support is always available

The Covid-19 pandemic and ongoing cost-of-living crisis have also seen more and more people struggle with their mental wellbeing.

Surveys carried out by Healthwatch Cornwall show the number of people with possible or likely anxiety or depression has consistently increased over recent years.

In 2020, 13% of respondents were likely to be suffering from anxiety or depression. This increased to 15% in 2021 and then 21% in 2022.

Cornwall Council and its partners across the health and social care system offer a range of services, schemes and materials that can help.

These include:

Visit www.cornwall.gov.uk/mentalhealth for more information and to see what else is available.

Dr Richard Sharpe, Public Health Consultant at Cornwall Council specialising in mental health, said:

“Feedback from across our communities suggests people are feeling more anxious but may not be coming forward for help and support with their wellbeing.

“This is why it is crucial that people know help and support is available if they find themselves struggling with their mental health and wellbeing.

“If they can, I would urge people generally to take time to relax, eat well, stay hydrated, and maintain a healthy and active lifestyle that includes good quality regular sleep patterns.

“You can also help friends, family or neighbours by asking them how they are really feeling. There is help on how to have these conversations on our website here.”

Cllr Dr Andy Virr, portfolio holder for adults and public health, said:

“Times are especially tough at the moment which will undoubtedly have a significant impact on people’s mental health and wellbeing.

“People can visit our mental health web pages for information on all the support that is available, and also check out www.cornwall.gov.uk/costofliving for details on the support available to help people get through the current cost of living crisis.

“Remember, it’s okay not to be okay, and if you’re struggling with your mental health then speak out and get help.

“If you are worried about your own or someone else’s mental health call the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly 24/7 NHS mental health response line on 0800 038 5300. It’s free to access by anyone, any age, any time, day or night.”

You can also visit the Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (CFT) website for information on mental health services in Cornwall.

Press release issued on January 13, 2023.