World Mental Health Day tomorrow (10 October) is arguably the most important one yet as coronavirus continues to impact negatively on all our lives.
Research by mental health charity Mind suggests more than 16, 000 people said their mental health has deteriorated during the pandemic; many people have developed new mental health problems and existing issues have been exasperated.
So Police Mutual is encouraging Federation members to use tomorrow as the first step to improving their own, or someone else’s, mental wellbeing.
Ross Hume, Police Mutual’s relationship manager, explained: “Coronavirus has brought changes, challenges and worries for us all and the effect of months of lockdown and loss cannot be underestimated.
“We know from research that emergency service workers were already twice as likely as the public to identify issues at work as the main cause of their mental health problems, yet less likely to seek help, but front-line key workers have been at the cold face of the fight against coronavirus so the need for mental health and psychological support for many of them is expected to increase in the coming months and years.”
Police Mutual has also produced a mental health fact sheet to coincide with Mental Health Day. It has tips and ideas on how to make positive changes to improve mental health and suggests members make the best they can of the ‘new normal’ by creating their own routines of enjoyable activities, whatever they may be, and spending time looking after their own physical and mental wellbeing.
It also includes links to support organisations such as Mind and Anxiety UK and details on the Police Mutual Health Assured app.
Ross added: “Making a positive change for your own, or someone else’s mental health, is more important now than ever before. But sometimes it’s difficult to know where to start so do just one thing tomorrow, whether it’s going for a walk, learning a new skill or doing something creative. Take the first step to getting support for yourself, or reaching out to someone else.
“Whatever you’ve been through this year, take 10 October as an opportunity to show your support for better mental health and make that positive change.”