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Britain’s deepening mental health crisis means 20 million people are suffering in silence every day. Disturbing statistics reveal a third of adults fail to make time to speak about their troubles. A quarter worry they will be judged if they open up while a third believe more accessible mental health support services would help.
The stark findings from mental health charity Mind come on Time to Talk Day, almost three years after Britain was plunged into lockdown.
Chief executive Sarah Hughes said: “We know talking about our mental health can help us feel less alone, more able to cope and encouraged to seek support if we need to.
“Yet our research found nearly a quarter of us aren’t because we’re worried we’ll face stigma.”
The mental health emergency gripping Britain sees more than one in five adults blighted by depression.
Probable mental illness among children has rocketed to one in six while three in five people’s condition worsened while waiting for support, with four per cent saying they attempted to take their own life.
Mind wants a 10-year, cross-government mental health strategy.
Experts say without immediate action, a perfect storm of the Covid pandemic, cost-of-living crisis and crippled economy will see the grim picture deteriorate.
The crisis prompted the Express to launch our By Your Side campaign to fight for better mental health provision to slash waiting times and suicide rates.
There are now around 1.6 million people on waiting lists for mental health support, while another eight million are unable to get help.
In 2021, there were more than 5,000 suicides registered in England.
Suicide is the biggest cause of death in men under 50 and around three-quarters of fatalities each year are men. Every 90 minutes someone takes their life in Britain.
Mind said even though two-fifths of people say it is important to talk about mental health, 33 per cent never make the space or time to speak about it.
The NHS aims to ensure more than 35 per cent of young people who need support can access services.
But with an increasing number of children and young people developing mental health problems, services are drowning under demand with thousands on waiting lists while their mental health deteriorates.
Therapy has allowed me a safe place to be vulnerable
As with the wider mental health landscape, there remains so much stigma around therapy, writes campaigner Rohan Kallicharan.
It is a word which can evoke feelings of shame, embarrassment and fear, but that should not be the case. Therapy is a brilliant tool in looking after our mental wellbeing and it has played a significant part in rebuilding my life.
Being able to open up and be vulnerable, simply to talk, is so empowering when we face challenges.
Therapy has allowed me a safe space to do just that. As well as being listened to, therapy has allowed me to be challenged in my thinking.
I am more self-aware and can understand the triggers for my anxiety, depression, or manic states.
Through therapy, I’ve been able to make sense of the extreme behaviours that can occasionally underpin mental ill health, in my case Bipolar Disorder Type 1. In doing so I have been able to look in the mirror with love and compassion instead of fear.
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