Public Health England (PHE) is encouraging adults to look after their mental health as they do their physical health through its new Every Mind Matters campaign – launching as a pilot exclusively in the West and East Midlands today, for World Mental Health Day (Wednesday 10 October).
The new campaign highlights that while we can all feel stressed, anxious, low or have trouble sleeping, there are simple actions we can take to manage them and prevent these issues from becoming more serious.
It encourages people to visit the Every Mind Matters guide, a free NHS-approved online resource, which provides expert advice, practical tips, and experiences from real people to help manage these issues and those of others.
Each year, around one in four people in England experience a mental health problem and the proportion of diagnosable common mental health conditions has increased by 20% in 20 years.
A new survey1 of adults across the West and East Midlands conducted for PHE also shows nearly three quarters (70%) of people in the West Midlands report experiencing one or more of low mood, anxiety, stress and trouble sleeping frequently or occasionally.
Stress is the most common response, with over half (51%) of people in the West Midlands experiencing this frequently or occasionally, compared to 49% for sleeplessness, 44% for low mood and 38% for anxiety.
The survey also found that two thirds (64%) of adults in the West Midlands say they look after their physical health on a weekly basis, but less than half (45%) look after their mental health as regularly.
These figures highlight the importance of helping people to better understand and take action on their own mental health.
Having good mental health can help us feel and function better, have more positive relationships with those around us and deal with and manage difficult times now and into the future. Over time, having good mental health may also reduce our risk of physical health problems.
Dr Lola Abudu, Director of Health and Wellbeing with PHE West Midlands, said: “With the pressures of modern life, it’s normal to feel stressed, anxious, low or have trouble sleeping some of the time. But when these become overwhelming or frequent they can manifest into a more serious problem. It’s just as important to take action to look after your mental health, as you would your physical health. Our campaign helps you take your mental health into your own hands, so you can protect and improve your own mental health and that of others.”
Chief Superintendent Sean Russell, director of implementation for health and wellbeing at the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) said: “We are delighted to be a campaign ambassador for Every Mind Matters, encouraging and helping people to look after their mental health. We have been a key partner in engaging employers across the region and the Every Mind Matters online guide will be a component for accreditation for the Thrive at Work scheme, rewarding employers for improving employees’ health and wellbeing.”
The Every Mind Matters guide also offers support for social anxiety, trauma, obsessions and compulsions or panic attacks and provides information for people wishing to help friends, family and colleagues experiencing mental health problems.
Every Mind Matters has been developed in conjunction with leading charities, academics and clinicians and is endorsed by leading experts in mental health.
It is being promoted to adults across the Midlands with new TV, radio and online adverts; and is being supported by a range of public sector, charity and commercial partners.
To access the Every Mind Matters digital platform, including expert-led videos, and create your own action plan to help look after your mental health, visit: https://www.nhs.uk/oneyou/every-mind-matters/