Mental health affects us all. How we think, how we feel and how we
live our daily lives. The illness refers to a wide range of conditions that
relate to how a person feels, perceives a situation and behaves. These range
from mild levels to really quite severe depending on the strength of the
illness, of which there are over 200 classified forms.
If you have poor mental health you may find that the ways you
react to certain situations and feel about things becomes difficult, and in
some cases impossible. The same as if you had a physical illness, a broken
wrist would affect your daily tasks such as driving, lifting and even eating.
The majority of people would see their Doctor and undertake appropriate
treatment. However, mental health hasn’t always been looked upon in the same
Looking after your mental health is just as important as taking
care of your physical health.
know the Facts and Figures
Mental health has become mainstream in the press and media over recent
years, with more and more people opening up about their past and current
difficulties with their mental health. However, few of us know how to
differentiate between one disorder to another.
- Depression – Around 3 million people in the UK are diagnosed with depression every year, making this the highest and most common form of mental illness not just in the UK but also worldwide. The mental health charity, Mind, have researched that more than half of these people will or have tried to commit suicide because of their illness.
- Anxiety – In a lifetime, most people will have the feeling of anxiousness whilst coping with stressful events or changes, particularly if it has a big impact on your life. 25% of anxiety sufferers are between the ages of 13 and 18 years old. Spotting any early signs of anxiety is essential, especially for young people in order to support them and prevent further mental health illnesses.
- Bipolar – Bipolar is a type of depression that is often characterised with mood swings from one extreme to the other. From feeling really high to crashing to a depressively low mood.
- Stress – Most of us have, or certainly will experience some strain of stress in our lifetime. 85% of UK adults are experiencing stress regularly. Although stress is not a psychiatric diagnosis, it can cause and aggravate underlying mental health problems such as depression and anxiety. An individual may think that this is well controlled but added stressors can potentially pull these issues to the surface.
It has been noted that 1 in 5 people will
call in sick due to workplace stress. Although it may not feel so at the time,
starting a conversation about mental health doesn’t have to be difficult. More
than 60% of employers said that they would like to do more to improve staff
wellbeing but need specialist guidance of how to do so in the correct and most effective
Spot the Signs
Early intervention is key in the diagnosis of a mental health illness and supporting someone that may be struggling to come to terms with the illness. Many people suffer in silence when they have a mental health condition and reports show that just 21% of people with a mental health condition are actively in employment. By tracking absence, employers can identify when people are taking regular days off sick or more days than usual. This could be the first sign that there may be underlying mental health conditions.
now, before it’s too late
Statistics from ‘The Shaw Mind
Foundation’ show that within the UK, mental health problems in the workplace
cost the economy approximately £70 billion annually.
Training and resources focused around mental health are there to help enforce a workplace culture that encourages continuous development and self-improvement of staff, and in turn will help to maintain and control the mental health of your staff.
Acorn Occupational Health can provide the following services:
Well-Being Audit (Stress Audit)
This is a questionnaire based anonymous stress audit for businesses. It
enables the employer to understand whether there are significant issues
regarding employee well-being. It considers the most prevalent stressors in the
organisation, whether they are real or perceived and an employee’s ability to
cope. A report is then
produced for the employer that offers advice regarding approaches that may
reduce stress in the workplace.
BOUNCE Back Workshop
Acorn have recently launched a ‘BOUNCE Back Workshop’ which helps individuals with their mental health and resilience. This is a 1-day course where individuals will be given an understanding of stress, how to identify its potential sources, maintain focus in difficult situations and how to remain calm, in control and emotionally balanced. It also gives managers the correct advice in order to provide the appropriate support to employees and colleagues. All of the tools taught on the workshop enable an individual to ‘bounce back’ from setbacks that might occur at any stage.
Stress / Resilience Training
does stress look like? What exactly is stress? This training covers
the effects of stress and how you as an individual or an employer can learn to
help. It also covers personality types along with the factors affecting how someone reacts to pressure and how employers can
help to support these situations.
Well Persons Medical
This is a comprehensive medical
assessment where employees are reassured that they are in good health, or that
early action could prevent ill health. Dependant on your requirements, the
medical can include blood pressure, pulse, urinalysis, mental health review,
vision, cholesterol and glucose checks, a musculoskeletal review, weight and
advice about lifestyle, diet and fitness.
EAP (Employee Assistance Programme)
Acorn’s Employee Assistance
Programme (EAP) is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, online and on the
telephone. Designed to answer your questions immediately or to refer you to the
most appropriate advisor, counsellor or source of information. The service
includes legal, financial, consumer and personal advice and it is all
Acorn can arrange counselling
referrals with trained professionals who complete therapies such as Cognitive
Behaviour Therapy. We can also arrange appointments with Psychiatric
specialists, depending on the individual’s requirements.
Whether it is yourself that is dealing
with a mental illness or have an employee who is suffering, it is key to recognise
that with the right guidance and help, a mental health illness is one that can
Don’t ignore your concerns, start your recovery now. For more information on the services that Acorn provide, please contact the team on 01260 277797 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.