Don’t suffer in silence – raising awareness of mental health support for all

Some of us find it hard to talk about how we’re feeling. The pandemic has affected all of us in different ways and for many, it has been a difficult time.

This World Mental Health Day, which falls on Sunday 10 October, people are being reminded that it’s now more important than ever to know what mental health support is available and how to access it.

The theme for this year is ‘Mental Health in an Unequal World’ and aims to raise awareness of the inequalities facing those affected by mental health.

Mental health issues can affect any of us at any point in our lives. Although women are more likely to report suicidal thoughts, men are three times more likely to die by suicide. Evidence suggests that people from Black Asian and Minority Ethnic communities are at higher risk of developing a mental health problem in adulthood but are less likely to receive support for their mental health.

This is why Buckinghamshire Council and our partners in the Suicide Prevention Group and our Champion the Change Hub are promoting good mental health for all.

Carl Jackson, Deputy Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing said: "Most of us will feel sad, worried, angry or fed up at times. Some might just feel ‘out of sorts’ and dismiss it whilst others can find they are so worried that it affects them in their day to day activities.

"You do not have to be at your lowest to ask for help. It is better to talk to someone you trust about how you are feeling and not wait. There is so much support for someone experiencing a mental health problem. There will be something that works for you.”

“If you have noticed a relative, friend or colleague isn’t their normal self, please just check in with them. Ask if they’re really OK and be prepared to #AskTwice if they just say ‘I’m fine’.”

If you need to speak to someone, the Bucks 24/7 Mental Health Helpline is a great place to start. Anyone concerned about their mental health or that of a loved one can ring 111 at any time, day or night to speak to an NHS mental health professional. They are ready to listen and support adults and children who need advice urgently to ensure they get the right help at the right time.

There are plenty of other ways to find support locally:

If you have concerns that you or someone you know is about to act on suicidal thoughts call 111 or 999, or go to the nearest Accident and Emergency Department. In Buckinghamshire this is at Stoke Mandeville Hospital.

Find out more about how Champion the Change are working to end mental health stigma.

There is further information and advice, including support for people bereaved by suicide, on the Buckinghamshire Mind website.