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HEALTHY KNOWSLEY

Mental Health Awareness Week

Mental Health awareness week runs from 14 to 20 May.  This year’s theme is stress and with the busy lives people now lead, it’s not surprising that approximately 16 million people nationally experience a mental health problem each year and stress is a key factor in this.

Life changes such as moving house, getting married or coping with bereavement can all cause stress. So too can problems such as unemployment, poor housing, noisy neighbours, relationship problems and difficulties at work.

All too often we have too many things on our ‘to do list’, which can make us feel overwhelmed and pressured and this can easily turn into stress.

Everyone’s stress triggers are different, and everyone reacts differently to stress. It can affect how you think, feel, behave and how your body works.

Common signs of stress include sleeping problems, sweating, craving for food or loss of appetite, difficulty concentrating, anxiety, irritability, low self-esteem, constant worry, a bad temper and headaches.

You can’t always stop the stress from happening, but how you react to it is really important.
Everybody has a time when they feel at their best. Identify your best time (you may be a morning or an afternoon person) and use it to carry out important tasks that need the most energy and concentration. Make a list of things you have to do on any given day. These are your priorities - everything else can be left until later. Arrange these priorities in order of importance and try to stick to that order.

Once you’ve finished a task, take some time to relax and remember to reflect on what you’ve achieved that day. Don’t spend time about worrying about what still needs to be done.
Keeping active, such as going for a walk, can also help to have a positive impact on your mood.

To find out more, visit www.mentalhealth.org.uk

Posted by Matthew Ashton, Director of Public Health for Knowsley and Sefton on May 11th, 2018

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