Let's talk mental health
NEAS Clinical care manager, Andy Dowson talks about his mental health and that it is ok to speak up if you are struggling.
Today is World Mental Health Day, a day for global mental health education, awareness and advocacy. Mental health problems can affect anyone, any day of the year and today is a great day to show your support for better mental health and start looking after your own wellbeing.
Independent research by MIND shows that members of the emergency services are even more at risk of experiencing a mental health problem than the general population, but are less likely to seek support.
Clinical care manager from NEAS Andy Dowson is telling his story about battling with his own mental health in the hope that it might help someone else to cope.
Father of 5, Andy still struggles with the loss of his brother over 40 years ago and began to notice how tough he and his wife were finding things about six years ago. It’s been a long challenging road back to a place where Andy and his wife now feel that they can recognise the bad days better and work together to keep talking and do the things that will help to move past them.
In his words, “I think we have the most privileged job in the world; people ask for help from me and my colleagues in the most vulnerable times of their lives - they invite us into their homes to help. But I’ve always felt like a below average Jo and I’ve not given myself credit for the things I’ve done to help people. “
Andy wanted to share his story with others because along his journey and in the course of his work he has come across people who might benefit from hearing a story that may resonate with them and give them the courage to do something to help themselves.
Andy concludes, “I feel at the moment as though I control the black cloud more than it controls me and that’s why I’ve written down what hundreds and thousands of other people are feeling like, in case it helps someone else. If you’re willing to take that step there’s an army of people who are willing to help you.”
To read Andy’s full story, visit his blog page that is set up to raise awareness of mental health issues amongst men. In the UK, 75% of those who seek treatment for depression are women, yet suicide is the biggest killer of men aged between 20 and 49. Read Andy's blog: https://www.mentellhealth.org/your-stories-1/2018/8/14/tricks-of-the-trade?rq=Andy%20dow.
If you would like to get involved on social media, there are some useful tag's available: @WMHDay @mindbluelight #WorldMentalHealthDay @TimetoChange #WMHD18 #AskTwice
For tips for looking after your mental health, visit: https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/tips-for-everyday-living/wellbeing/?ctaId=/get-involved/world-mental-health-day/slices/wellbeing/#.W7ySlIWcGUk