Good mental health is not simply the absence of diagnosable mental health problems, although good mental health is likely to help protect against development of many such problems.
Good mental health is characterised by a person’s:
- ability to learn
- ability to feel, express and manage a range of positive and negative emotions
- ability to form and maintain good relationships with others
- ability to cope with and manage change and uncertainty.
Did you know?
- 1 in 6 of us in the UK struggle with mental health issues at any one time.
- Each year 1 in 4 of us will experience a mental health problem such as anxiety or depression.
- 1 in 100 of us will have a severe mental health problem, and personal financial stresses resulting from the current economic climate are a major cause of anxiety and depression.
- At least 30% of GP consultations are for a mental health problem, but this is the tip of the iceberg as many people never seek help and only 25% of common mental illnesses are treated at all.
- Around 750,000 people in the UK over 65 have some form of dementia.
- Dementia is also associated with other mental illnesses.
How can I help myself?
You can help keep yourself in good mental health by:
- Keeping active
- Eating well
- Drinking sensibly
- Talking about how you feel
- Keeping in touch with friends and loved ones
- Asking for help when you need it
- Taking a break
- Doing something you’re good at and enjoy
- Accepting who you are
- Caring for others
Visit Mind in Cambridgeshire for services that support those recovering from mental health challenges.
Visit Lifecraft to find a range of activities such as art, singing, meditation, and a women's group which help our users in their recovery.
Visit Action for Happiness: Bringing together people who want to play a part in creating a happier society for everyone.
Arts on prescription: Sessions for 2014 include: Cambridge, March, Huntingdon, Cambourne and Wisbech.
Books on prescription and mood boosting books.
View a short video five steps to mental wellbeing.
Exercise on referral scheme
The exercise referral scheme helps people in Cambridgeshire become fitter and more active.
The scheme can benefit a wide range of conditions including high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, osteoporosis, mobility problems, depression and cardiac conditions.
Find out about the scheme in your area:
Locally we have produced guidelines for the mental health referral options available for people with mental health problems.
We have launched the STOP suicide pledge campaign.
Referral options guidelines
Patients with mild to moderate mental health problems, such as depression and anxiety can request treatments from the relevant health professional.
For tips on staying mentally health see:
Physical activity and exercise are good ways to promote and protect our mental health. Experts believe that exercise releases chemicals in your brain that make you feel good.
Regular exercise can provide the following benefits:
- Increased self esteem
- Increased concentration and motivation
- Less tension, stress and mental fatigue
- A natural energy boost
- Improved sleep
- A sense of achievement
- Less anger or frustration
- Promote a healthy appetite
- Lead to a better social life
- Provide fun
The Mental Health Foundation has podcasts and videos for more information on exercise and mental health.
Focus on living with schizophrenia
There is more media misinformation about schizophrenia than about any other type of mental health problem, and therefore lack of knowledge and understanding. Here are some important facts:
- The incidence is 1 in 100 people during their lifetime across all populations.
- It is a condition which affects thinking, feeling and behaviour and causes people to have abnormal experiences (e.g. delusions, hearing voices & hallucinations).
- The symptoms can be disruptive and have an impact on day-to-day tasks, such as going to work, maintaining relationships and caring for yourself or for others.
- A diagnosis of schizophrenia does not mean ‘split personality’.
- Some people think that people who hear voices are dangerous, but actually people with schizophrenia are more likely to harm themselves than other people.
- Early diagnosis and treatment can prevent complications and improve the chance of recovery. Although currently there is no cure, it can be treated and managed with medication and supportive therapies.
The Mental Health Foundation has more information about schizophrenia:
- View Hearing voices
- Read Barry's story about how self-management helped him to cope with schizophrenia
- Watch David's video about his experience of hearing voices
Read more about living with schizophrenia
Local support services for mental health
- Dial 999: For an ambulance and other emergency services. 24 hrs a day, 365 days a year. During daytime hours you may prefer to contact your GP or local A&E Department if an ambulance is not required
- Samaritans: 08457 90 90 90, 24 hrs a day, 365 days a year. Minicom/textphone: 08457 90 91 92
Email: [email protected]
- Lifeline: 0808 808 2121, 7pm to 11pm, 365 days a year. Cambridgeshire Mental Health Helpline. Freephone from a BT landline
- Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Foundation Trust (CPFT): 0800 052 2252 out of hours number for existing CPFT service users only. Mondays to Fridays, 5pm to 10pm, Saturdays, Sundays and Bank Holidays, 8am to 10pm.
- Mind in Cambridgeshire Cambridge office 01223 311 320, Huntingdon office 01480 470 480.