A North Lincolnshire based health trust which provides a range of services across the borough to people experiencing difficulties with their mental health has issued the following advice for residents who may be experiencing more than just the winter blues over the Christmas period.
Graeme Fagan, North Lincolnshire Director for mental health services for Rotherham Doncaster and South Humber NHS Foundation Trust (RDaSH), said: “For some people the festive season brings increased levels of anxiety and stress, and for others it may intensify feelings of loneliness, sadness and isolation.
“It’s important for people to know there is always someone to talk to and to seek help when it’s needed. In the first instance North Lincolnshire residents should try and speak to their GP or ring the out of hours on call GP.
“In an emergency situation, where you, or someone you know has concerns about their immediate mental health, you should ring our Crisis Team on North Lincolnshire 01724 382015.”
The Trust also has specialist mental health staff, working in the Emergency Department at Scunthorpe Hospital, who support the hospital staff and offer advice and assistance when people, both adults and children, are admitted.
Patients are assessed and offered a range of different support, depending upon their individual needs. This can include one-to-one support and counselling, group support and access to the Trust’s Talking Therapies service via the website http://iapt.rdash.nhs.uk
Another alternative is calling The Samaritans free on 116 123. There is also the Rethink helpline available 24 hours a day on telephone 08088 010442. However, if anyone has actually harmed themselves they should attend Emergency Department immediately.
Cllr Ralph Ogg, cabinet member for Adults and Health at North Lincolnshire Council, said: “Support is available for people to improve their mental health and wellbeing all year round. However, Christmas time can be a difficult time for some people, especially those living on their own. We are encouraging people to talk about how they are feeling and get help from their GP or contact a helpline.
“Evidence suggests there are five steps you can take to improve your mental health and wellbeing. Trying these things could help people feel more positive and able to get the most out of life. Further details can be found at www.nhs.uk/conditions/stress-anxiety-depression/improve-mental-wellbeing/.”
There are a number of national helplines that also offer support, a list of useful links can be found in the ‘Support and advice’ section via the following link: http://www.rdash.nhs.uk