Welcome to our all-new monthly spotlight on an organisation or resource that can help us all in our quest for better health!
The April spotlight's on......Sane, Mind and Samaritans - 3 mental health and emotional support organisations
Read on for all the details and/or download your personal copy here
What are they?
All these organisations are charities which provide help and support for mental health. In each case, their websites will tell you more about them but here is our overview.
How can it help me with living with diabetes?
Diabetes can often bring with it emotional issues – for example anxiety at the time of diagnosis, worry about the future, fear of complications, relationship or work problems. Sometimes diabetes comes along when you already have a mental health diagnosis or experience, and vice versa. It’s quite common for anxiety and depression to develop when you have diabetes, for example.
All of these need help and support, but it can be that the medical needs of your diabetes tend to take centre stage, with less attention to your mental and emotional health. So one way these organisations can help is to reverse this and help you prioritise your mental and emotional health in more detail, talk about your feelings and reactions to having diabetes and / or look at treatment and therapy options, depending on your situation.
Another way they can help is by providing you with information to help make sense of your feelings and to better understand any mental health problems you have or develop. In the case of Mind and Sane, discussion forums help you to get and give support to other people and they have a range of practical services you can access. In the case of Samaritans, you can call any time of the day or night, so you can be confident of getting someone to talk to about your feelings, even ‘out of hours’.
How can it help me with working with diabetes?
Most obviously, knowing about these organisations and how they help, will help you to pass on this information to people with diabetes you are in contact with, when you think they may need the kind of support they offer. In turn, this will help people to look after themselves and get support that may not be easy to access or provided in the NHS, for example, counselling or therapy, advice on preventing relapses, detailed information about treatment options. They can provide a useful point of contact between your scheduled consultations, perhaps.
As a health professional or staff member, you will have skills which are valued by these organisations among their volunteers. It may be that you are looking for a new outlet for your skills and volunteers in these organisations are always being sought. In turn, you may also gain new skills and perspectives from volunteering, which can help in your NHS work with diabetes.
Finally, working in diabetes can be stressful and bring its own effects on your mental health and emotions. These organisations are for everyone and their resources and services may offer you ways to help you look after yourself in order to carry on caring for others.
Our 3 top reasons to give a try:
1. They can provide additional support, information and services, which help both people with diabetes and health professionals
2. Emotional and mental health issues are often the ‘poor relation’ in diabetes care. These organisations can help to change that and give people ‘somewhere to go’
3. All the organisations are highly respected, freely accessible, respect confidentiality and anonymity and, in the case of Mind and Samaritans, have a local presence
Any down sides?
None that we can think of: among these 3 organisations, there seems to be something for all of us.
That’s it for now! Hope you like our take on Mind, Sane and Samaritans, and watch out for another ‘Self Health Spotlight’ in May!