Telford and Wrekin health bosses say now is the time to talk about mental health

Telford and Wrekin Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) are encouraging local residents, especially those who are experiencing mental health problems, to take part in ‘Time to Talk Day’. 

The national awareness day, which takes place on Thursday, 2 February, encourages people to talk and listen about mental health. 

Conversations about mental health change lives. At the moment, too many people with mental health problems are made to feel isolated, ashamed and worthless by other people’s reactions. The central idea of the day is “It’s #timetotalk because if you say something, you realise how many people around you haven’t, and needed to.” This means that by talking about mental health, we can help remove this feeling of isolation, and help people get the treatment they need.

Talking about mental health is important for a variety of reasons:

  • It is one of the best ways to prevent mental illness
  • It helps break the stigma around mental health and can make it easier for those affected to seek treatment
  • It can be part of the cure. For example, talking about depression is a good first step towards overcoming it

But talking about mental health doesn’t need to be difficult. It can be as simple as making time to have a cup of tea or go for a walk, and listening to someone talk about how they feel. Being open about mental health and ready to listen can make a positive difference to someone’s life. 

Dr Shailandra Allen, the CCGs GP Lead for Mental Health said: “We are working hard to put mental health on a par with physical health, and the NHS has made great improvements to services over the last decade. However, this change also needs to take place at home. 

“It’s really important to get people talking about mental health, because it helps to identify when there is a problem, and by breaking the silence, you’re breaking the stigma around mental health. Removing this stigma can help remove the isolation that people with mental illness feel, and can give them the support they need to seek treatment.”

Whatever the hour, every conversation, every text, every share means more people are reached and more lives are changed. You can even join in online. The hashtag, #time-to-talk, will be used on Twitter throughout the day to raise awareness regarding the importance of talking about mental health. 

If you are worried about your mental health, you can find more information at NHS choices. Here you can find information about symptoms, treatments and services near you, just visit: http://www.nhs.uk/livewell/mentalhealth/Pages/Mentalhealthhome.aspx